News updates from the CWG social media team and the fundraising committee:
— On Friday, September 8, we reached €50,450.85 through the gifts of 1425 donors. This is after just one month of formal fundraising via osm.org and OSM social media. It’s an outstanding achievement.
– the average gift is about €35 which is terrific. The ability to inspire small donations from many people is a characteristic of a strong, healthy organization.
– membership in the OSMF is way up, as well. There were 365 new members in August (compared to 38 in July)
This money goes directly to supporting the data centers, our SRE, and other infrastructure.
CONGRATULATIONS to the whole community and to the teams who have worked on this initiative.
The comments at https://supporting.openstreetmap.org/donate are quite inspiring–check them out.
There is still a lot of work to be done to make sure that the OSM project has the financial stability it requires.
The funding dynamic in tech/geospatial is changing fast. Companies have fewer euro/dollars to give for “corporate social responsibility” in this year of volatile markets. The new foundation which I will not name, is affecting the dynamic of giving and creating uncertainty. As well, some aspects of fundraising are difficult to do as volunteers. For example, good fundraising requires very good financial reporting because donors expect accountability and gratitude. It requires list management and a strategy for communicating asks so that you don’t drive people crazy with spamming requests. It requires excellent storytelling and the ability to reach a couple of dozen unique, culturally distinct audiences.
CALL FOR VOLUNTEERS: we need help with: data analysis, social media storytelling, data visualization, and UI/UX. We need to improve our wordpress site (giving pages and blog) so that they are lightweight, load easily and make transactions very easy. We could also use someone with skills in CiviCRM.
If OSM can become self-funding, i.e., if its costs could be covered by the people who map and the small businesses, nonprofits and NGOS who use its data, there would be no dependencies on large corporations. The benefits of collaboration and co-development with large companies are real–but having a balance of support is the essence of a healthy organization.
If you have any time to volunteer to this fundraising work, let someone on the CWG or OSMF board know!
Here’s one more update: (it’s been a busy week)
The new guidelines for corporate membership are now public. You can look at them here:
Join as a corporate member - OpenStreetMap Foundation (osmfoundation.org)
And read about the “why” here at the blog:
OSM Foundation Announces New Membership Guidelines for Corporate Sponsorship | OpenStreetMap Blog
CALL TO ACTION: If you operate a small company or organization that uses OSM, or if you know people who do, please share these links. If you are connected to large companies who use OSM, please also share these links.
Becoming a corporate member of the OSMF is a very good way to “give back” and support the stability of OSM and the rates are quite low, when you think about how much data the value provides. It’s important for those who benefit and/or profit from OSM data to help make it accessible for all.