24 hours to rebalance the OSM Foundation's governance

The OpenStreetMap project is organized on an international level by the OpenStreetMap Foundation, under British law.

In recent years, the Board has gradually lost its balance. Over-representation of some areas and groups makes it difficult to maintain a balanced and diversity of government action and raises some conflict of interest issues.

On December 15 there are board elections, and everyone who was a member before November 15 can vote.

Some companies are paying employees to join, and there are rumors that they give voting instructions. Therefore, it is important that all kinds of mappers join in to balance things out. The Netherlands are currently under-represented with only 28 members; it is not proportionate to the size of the local community. By way of comparison, in the last few days, 17 employees from a single US company have joined.

This might not be anything sinister, but it’s worrying especially shortly before the board election, and getting the largest amount of OSMF members is the best safeguard of balance.

https://join.osmfoundation.org/normal-membership is the form. It costs £15 (about €17), it takes 4 minutes, it’s important and it’s too late in 24 hours. I am a candidate for the board election, but of course you distribute your votes however you want. Joost Schouppe, from Gent, is another excellent candidate.

Guillaume Rischard (Stereo), who’s recently used OpenStreetMap to cycle from Luxembourg to the Vaalserberg, and apologises for not speaking Dutch.

Representation in OSMF will never be proportionate as long as it remains pay-to-play.

I think it is strange that when I have given thousands of euros worth in voluntary work to OSM, that I still would have to pay 17 euro to vote for the board…

Yeah right, that would ease joining, but OSMF doesn’t live on social security.

edit: translation fix.

For everything OSMF, you should join the mailinglist: