Minutes of the Foundation Board meeting for Tuesday, October 9, 2018, 15:30 UTC
Next week's meeting is moved due to the Foundation hackfest, to October 19.
- Private minutes again (Philip)
- Neil's travel approval - Sustain Summit and Freenode.Live (Neil)
Review GitLab issues
- Private minutes again
See comment on issue #60: https://gitlab.gnome.org/Teams/Board/issues/60#note_341238
- Summary: Alexandre Franke has asked for the private minutes from May 29 to be published as an addendum to the private minutes from May 15 that we already published, because they show that he went on the record disagreeing with the outcome of the vote, since he was not present at the May 15 meeting.
- This seems unnecessary just for one line from the minutes. Alexandre could have replied to the email himself.
ACTION - Philip to reply to the published minutes with an addendum indicating Alexandre's dissent.
- Neil's travel approval (Neil)
Sustain Summit (https://sustainoss.org/) is a one-day event in London, which follows an unconference format. Attended by a number of people who are interested in free software and how to make it more sustainable. It's nearby and inexpensive, and Karen Sandler is going.
Freenode.Live (https://freenode.live) is a two-day event in Bristol, where Neil has a talk. It's pretty much the same thing as last year; lots of free software faces show up.
VOTE: Approve Neil's travel to Sustain Summit and Freenode.Live
- +1 unanimous, vote passed.
Review GitLab issues
- Kat: Neil, have you started looking at doing the sponsorship brochures for next year's conferences?
- Neil: not yet, normally we start in January
- Kat: have had trouble in the past requesting sponsorship from companies if they plan their spending on October
- Neil: if we do the brochure too early, we don't have the status of things like GNOME.Asia to put in the brochure.
- Questions about conference budgets (Allan)
- Allan: Last time we voted on the GUADEC budget, it was a bit ambiguous what we approved because of the low, medium, and high bands in the budget. I'm not sure at what level the GUADEC team intend to manage the budget.
- Kat: (speaking on behalf of the GUADEC team, not the board) What the GUADEC team understands is that we can spend up to the minimum right away even though the sponsorship hasn't come in yet, and to spend over the minimum we rely on Neil to communicate when sponsorship comes in. We will only go over the minimum when enough sponsorship has been received.
- Allan: That's completely different from our current conference spending policy.
- Kat: The conference spending policy should be revisited, based on our experiences last year.
- Nuritzi: We can take a look at policies at the hackfest. Kat, could you make a draft?
- Kat: has been drafting a new conference spending policy as part of the GUADEC preparations.
- Allan: We need to examine what the merits of the new policy are above the old.
- Kat: The current policy does not allow for making a loss at all, which is not good because it would mean that we would have no GUADEC rather than a small loss.
- Neil: The policy Kat described isn't completely different from the current policy. We could describe it as, the minimum sponsorship is what we consider to be minimally viable, without which we won't have a conference.
- Neil: we could have flowcharts to illustrate decision making based on how much money can be spent as it comes in for each sponsor.
- Discussion about what minimum and maximum spending means.
- Allan: It's odd that we seem to have a policy that we adopted last year, and a de-facto policy that seems to be different.
- Kat: As Neil said, it's not all that different, although it's differently phrased.
- Allan: The banding seems to create extra bureaucracy for the GUADEC team.
- Rob: The board could approve just a minimum and maximum expenditure, rather than three different projections, and the GUADEC team could basically act on their own discretion within those boundaries, prioritizing their expenses based on the sponsorship that comes in.
- Allan: That was what we intended with the conference spending policy.
- Philip: Only in this discussion did the issue become clear to me, so I think we could communicate it better in the spending policy.
- Allan: We also approved that GUADEC could make a loss, but that's ambiguous because the spending bands are linked to how much is raised.
ACTION - Allan to summarize the issue and write it on #81, and we can see based on that if the policy needs updating.