AssociationMembershipFeeMotion

This motion needs a proposer and a specific summary

Summary

The General Assembly shall set the annual membership fee to XXX.

Description

There is currently no membership fee in the AssociationArticles. To change this...

Voting results

(pending)

Discussion

  • I suggest there be some membership fee, even if just a nominal sum, so all active members will have some minimal skin in the game. -- IsaacLin - 22 Nov 2008 - 01:45
    • How about 10,00 Euro per year. -- MartinSeibert - 23 Nov 2008 - 19:13
    • In this case, we should also seriously think about a student/scholar tariff (50% discount?) -- MarkusUeberall - 11 Sep 2009
    • I agree, and suggest that we have a tiered dues structure. Not sure if Martin meant 10 or 1000 Euro. 10 is not enough and 1000 may be too much for independent consultants (some of whom may be important contributor/members). -- RaymondLutz - 11 Sep 2009
  • I suggest that some minimal skin in the game isn't enough of a reason to make joining more difficult for anyone. I 'vote' for zero fees, unless there are really strong justifiable reasons that make it necessary to limit membership to those that have spare cash (every year). Additionally, adding tiers, fees and so on adds to our costs - which requires a strong facts based reason too. -- SvenDowideit - 11 Sep 2009
  • Since there has been some concerns expressed about a possible takeover of the project, I thought it might be worthwhile considering having a bit of a barrier for membership. A secretly unfriendly faction could otherwise get enough people added as members to gain a majority position, with no cost to them, and then replace the board and amend the articles of association. (Perhaps this is sufficiently unlikely, but I believe it should be given some thought.) -- IsaacLin - 12 Sep 2009
  • I agree that a minimal membership fee should be there. @Sven: 10 Euro per year - that's 83 cent per month - not really something you'd call a major expense. You spent more on chocolate I guess wink Actually I'd even opt for a higher yearly membership fee. Have a look at other open source projects with an association and their membership programs. - MichaelDaum
    • Nice example Michael: http://ev.kde.org/supporting-members.php ... So you see, 8 companies have paid this kind of membership fees for KDE. Yes, 8 for KDE. How many do you think will pay the same kind of amount for Foswiki? Maybe 1 if we're lucky. Therefore, I'm totally aligned with Sven's opinion on that matter. -- OlivierRaginel - 18 Sep 2009
  • It is essential, in my view, that there be a membership fee. Contrary to what you might assume, having a nominal fee to join will help to keep costs down by avoiding spammer-style members who will enter memberships just to get their link on the page. From a legal standpoint as well, it is essential that a monetary transaction take place to mark the event. I am for a figure of perhaps 100 Euro per year and allow others to give more in a tiered structures if they want to or if it is obvious that we are dealing with mega-corporations who want to be seen participating at a higher level. Who cares if someone wants to donate more to the association to make sure it is successful? Therefore, you set up tiers like this:
    • Individual 100 Euro
    • Small Corporation 1000 Euro (i.e. < 50 million Euro / year revenue)
    • Medium Corporation 2500 Euro (>50 and <300 million Euro / Year)
    • Large Corporation 5000 Euro (>300 million Euro / Year)
There will be costs associated with running the association, such as server hosting, legal fees, room rental, etc. Having a simple structure like the one shown above is a reasonable way to provide for these expenses and avoid bogus members who are only in it to improve their google page standing. -- RaymondLutz - 14 Sep 2009
  • I support Raymonds proposal that there should be a membership fee. As individual I think I can raise 100 Euros per year. -- FranzJosefGigler - 14 Sep 2009
  • I believe a membership fee will mean the association will be minimal in size. People that loose their work or are students do not find 100 Euros a small fee. And a 10 Euro fee which everyone can raise is not worth collecting the money unless we grow large. I strongly recommend that we start off with a free membership and maybe in a year or two we can introduce a moderate membership fee in the 10-50 Euros per year for individuals. But let us nurse this association to get started. The fact that only 8 have bother voting for the date tells me that the association - if free - will start with 20-30 member. If we have to pay 100 I dount we will be 10. So let us put the bar low now. -- KennethLavrsen - 17 Sep 2009
  • People from countries with weak currencies may also find 100 Euros rather steep. Nevertheless, I support the argument for non-free membership. -- MichaelTempest - 18 Sep 2009

  • Remember what we do with the money. The primary purpose is definitely not to scare people. The money there to foster foswiki development. It will flow back to its members anyway, e.g. to organize developer sprint meetings. People will contribute to foswiki even without becoming a member, for sure. Members on the other hand do have a lot of rights, for instance to apply for funding, vote for board members, take care of foswiki a bit more than normal code contribution. So why should we give someone all these rights, like applying for refunding traveling expense, if he didn't put something into the pot himself? -- MichaelDaum - 18 Sep 2009
  • Ok, after a small discussion on irc, I think I've come to the conclusion that I'm strongly against requiring a membership fee for individuals. Perhaps its due to my not seeing any compelling reasons I would commit to paying money, when I already contribute my time and attention, or perhaps its because I would like to see more members. (Micha and other's, if its such a small amount, I'm sure you'd be willing to pay it for me (and other active developers?) -- SvenDowideit - 18 Sep 2009
  • I am against a member fee. Any amount larger than zero will create a barrier. We are not in the luxurious position to pick the most willing contributors - we need them all. And we need to remove all barriers to proceed from casual contributor to member with a say. As for a hostile takeover, 10 or 100 euros won't make that difference. -- ArthurClemens - 18 Sep 2009
  • I feel unable to judge one way or another. Here's the points I've been able to clarify to myself:
    • We can still develop the product without being members of the assocation. Do individuals really need/want to be members of the Foswiki association?
      • Probably not, unless they care about Foswiki beyond the code/product - Ie. supporting the association that holds the domains, pays hosting bills and making sure it continues to exist as a functional legal entity acting in the interests of the Foswiki community.
    • Does the Foswiki association need/want members (what does it get in return if not members' fees)?
      • Apart from funding, more members means more effort for special interests to influence or take control of the association.
      • More members probably means a more robust and certain existance.
      • More members probably means more productivity when it comes to things like attending trade shows/conferences, marketing efforts, etc.
    • Incidentally, I have roughly enough flyer points to make it to Brisbane, or maybe Auckland one-way wink -- PaulHarvey - 18 Sep 2009
  • I appreciate the point about prolific contributors providing equivalent value to a membership fee; I suggest that if a membership fee is adopted, the membership can vote to grant honorariums to members deemed to be key to the project, and that the honorarium be at least the value of membership fee. I understand the anxiety about barriers, but it may be nice to start building up funding for infrastructure, so the project will not be beholden to specific members (which too can cause issues in case of disagreements). -- IsaacLin - 18 Sep 2009
  • There should be a minimal fee for active membership (10 to max. 30€ per year) for the following reasons:
    1. Minimal because
      1. individuals should not be scared (students from other countries, etc.)
      2. we need a certain mass that can jump "relatively" easily over this "barrier"
      3. if the fee is that minimal honorariums shouldn't be needed
    2. Not equals 0 because
      1. active members have extra rights and duties (see articles: 4. a) Primarily, Active Members are expected to cooperate, participate in the General Assembly and exercise their voting rights)
      2. low investment should at least symbolize a continued interest
      3. of getting some guarantied finances for regular costs
    3. 50% off for students could still be done for active members (maybe not with 10€ but from 20€)
    4. We can still create a tier structure in which a company must pay more (100 to 500€ on the lowest level) if joining not via an individual members name but as a legal body with 1 dedicated employee as representative (see articles: 4. Types of Membership). They then could get at least the right to be mentioned a bit more prominently somehow, e.g. with a logo.
    5. Once some experience is there fees can still be adjusted in both directions.
    6. Note: The articles also define: 4. b) "Supporting Members" are natural persons or legal bodies that support the Association's purposes and make special contributions to the projects. They have the rights of Active Members except for any voting rights.
      1. There is no need of any fee for supporting members who also could be listed somehow. -- IngoKappler - 29 Sep 2009
Topic revision: r2 - 01 Feb 2012, OliverKrueger - This page was cached on 15 Aug 2019 - 14:57.

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