[Linux-aus] attracting and maintaining volunteers

Cameron Shorter cameron.shorter at gmail.com
Tue May 1 08:30:24 AEST 2018

On 30/4/18 7:07 pm, Linux Australia President wrote:
> We conducted an organisational SWOT analysis to know what to focus on 
> - no surprises - it raised issues of volunteer capacity, 
> sustainability, areas we need to address with policy, and platform renewal

Hi council,

Re attracting volunteers, I suggest it might be helpful to make it easy 
for people to make small contributions, in particular, by moving 
conversations into a public and open forum, such as this email list.

I've helped mentor a number of projects through the incubation process 
of the Open Source Geospatial foundation, which involves a checklist as 

Of particular note is:

/* The project uses public communication channels for decision making to 
maintain transparency. E.g. archived email list(s), archived IRC 
channels(s), public issue tracker./

You will find Open Source foundations have similar requirements.

I've observed that for a community the size of Linux Australia, the 
email list seems very quiet. It appears that decisions are being 
discussed and made in forums I don't have access to as a casual 
contributor. E.g. Offsite meetings.

While there is a place for offsite meetings, I feel they should 
complement rather than replace online forums which allow for casual 
contribution. E.g. Discuss complex topics at an onsite, but then follow 
up with all topics to be discussed on list, with a motion and vote on 
list, so everyone has the chance to contribute. (An example of this 
process is used by the OSGeo-Live project, like many others, and 
documented here: https://trac.osgeo.org/osgeolive/wiki/OSGeoLive%20PSC )

What do others in the committee and on this list think? Would it help 
with attracting volunteer engagement?

Cheers, Cameron

Cameron Shorter
Technology Demystifier, Learnosity
Open Technologies Consultant

M +61 (0) 419 142 254

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