Election to Board 2015 – Part II

Third-party article by Michael Reichert, one of the authors of German Wochennotiz and OSM contributor.

Editoral by Michael Reichert, a.k.a. Nakaner

Additions to Part 1

Some errors occured while writing part 1 of this blogpost. They have been corrected at part 1 meanwhile. But I list them here, too. I have also got some more information about Mikel which might influence your decision.

Mikel Maron

Mikel was founding member of Data Working Group but is not DWG member any more.

I wrote about him at part 1: “People who do not like HOT may note that Mikel contributed to OSM long before people thought about humanitarian mapping.” That’s not the full truth. He already thought about a humanitarian usage of OSM in 2005.

I wrote “he ‘would support periodic public board meetings’ and is in favour of open voting reporting”. That’s wrong. The has not decided yet, i.e. is the only candidate who does not fully support transparency.

HOT tried to register the trademark “Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team” in summer 2014 without asking OSMF beforehand. (OSMF owns the trademark OpenStreetMap. See also Frederik’s posting at OSMF-Talk mailing list) Mikels involvement in this attempt to register trademark casts a poor light on his handling of OSM’s interests.

Ilya Zverv

Ilya’s nickname is Zverik, not Zverv. 😉

“The corporate membership fees should be increased by the factor of 10 to earn more money and to promote it better.” is wrong. “The number of regular memberships should be increased by the factor 10 and better promoted.” is right.

I wrote that Ilya would be glad to have Mikel Maron being elected, too. He thinks that Mikel is good in aquiring money from large organizations and companies. That’s wrong. Mikel has never aquired any Pound for OSMF but he might be good as an organizer and has a lot of experience as a board member.

Gonzalo Perez

Gonzalo (aka Zalitoar, Wiki) is a Heavy Mapper 2.0 from Buenos Aires, Argentinia. He started contributing in 2008, his main contribution activity started in 2012. He was the main organizer of State of the Map 2014.

His manifesto is only two sentences long. That’s why I just full-quote it:

I wish to serve in a broader sense to the project. The projects and activities that we have done in South America in the last year boosted the growth of the communities in this part of the world, a strategy which I consider necessary and possible in other regions.

He has not answered any questions at the Q&A page at the wiki yet although the elections have already started. That’s why I simply cannot say anything good about him and cannot suggest you to vote him.

Martijn van Exel

Martijn (aka mvexel, wiki) is an Addicted Mapper from the Netherlands who nowadays lives in the Salt Lake City, Utah. He contributes to OSM since 2008 as mapper.

He was president of OSM US from 2012 to 2013. A few weeks ago he has been elected as OSM US board member (he wrote the naked truth at his manifesto of that election).

His manifesto is short (full-quote):

Bringing almost a decade of grassroots OSM experience and 4 years of US Chapter board experience to the table. Read my OSM diary to learn more about me. Please get in touch with me if you have questions, or to let me know what you want from the OSMF board. I work for Telenav on OSM. Ask me anything!

Martijn is member of OSMF License Working Group and Communication Working Group but not really active. He is employed at Telenav (the company developing Scout) and his programming activity is focused on tools improving OSM data (Missing Roads JOSM plugin, Traffic Flow JOSM plugin, Maproulette etc.) and support editing of OSM data.

He thinks that the board’s proceedings should be open but he does not answer the question if the voting should be open and if there should be board term limits.

He suggests that someone who becomes member of a local chapter should become a member of the OSMF automatically because people (his experience from U.S.) often do not know that OSM US and OSMF are separate organizations. (I think that this might be a little bit the fault of OSM US, too, which organizes larger events than the OSMF)

Asked whom the foundation should serve, he answers that OSMF should serve its members and if there are not enough mappers member contributing to OSMF, OSMF should aim to increase the number of signups by mappers.

OSMF should continue its work on the Community Guidelines and not leave ODbL related questions to “IANALs” (I am not a lawyer).

He “is entirely in favour” of paying staff.

Douglas Ssebaggala

Douglas (aka Douglo at osm.org/Douglaseru at the wiki) is a Casual Mapper from Uganda. His wiki user page links to his user page at the English Wikipedia but he did not edit anything at the English Wikipedia beyond his user page and the page of a local user group.

He is member of Local Chapters Working Group.

His manifesto is short and he only answered a few questions.

I have too few information about Douglas and that’s why I cannot form an opinion about him and cannot suggest that you to elect him.

Yantisa Akhadi

Yantisa (aka Iyan at osm.org, Yantisa at the wiki) is a Casual Mapper from Jakarta, Indonesia. He contributes to OSM since 2013. He gives talks about OSM and wrote a few posts at the Indionesian OSM blog.

His manifesto is mainly his personal history and feelings about OSM. He does not say anything about his vision, what he wants to do as a board member.

He works as HOT Team Project Manager in Indonesia. He “support[s] transparency in OSMF board’s but does not speak out if he supports open voting.

He has not answered all questions and I do not know how he thinks about paying staff.

Ryan Peterson

Ryan (aka SP!KE) is a Heavy Mapper 2.0 and has been contributing to OSM since 2011. Ryan was “General Manager of Navigation and OSM” at Telenav and nowadays works at Apple. He has been working with commercial map data for 16 years.

His manifesto ist located at his wiki user page. The first half of his manifesto is his personal history and bio. He wants to bring OSM data more into companies and non-profits and wants them to contribute to OSM by mapping.

Beyond editing his neighbourhood and editing for humanitarian purposes, he gave talks about OSM and did advertising. He did not contribute as developer.

He does not help in any working group but says that he wants to “help recruit relevantly-skilled participants”. Why doesn’t he help himself?

His answers to most questions are very short and contain little information. He writes that the boards work should be “open as much as possible, but confidential when required by issues at hand”. That’s an answer most candidates gave in a similar way.

He suggest to add an asterisk at the user pages at osm.org if the user is an OSMF member. (Note: Currently a blue asterisk is used to mark DWG members) A banner at osm.org might increase the number of members.

The OSMF should serve “the electorate/OSMF members, and secondarily, but extremely importantly, the OSM contributors, of any contribution type”, he says.
He supports board term limits because because it were always healthy to have new voices on a board.
He agrees with employing people by OSMF if volunteers needed to fill a necessary skill set are not available. Service providers and/or contractors as opposed to full time employees should be preferred.

As written above (and mentioned casually at his manifesto), he works at Apple. As far as I know from other sources, he is employed at the geodata department of Apple but he describes a possible conflict of interest at the Q&A wiki page as “unlikely”.


Edits (changesets) This row simply counts the number of changesets. Please note that iD user often have small/tiny changesets.

Code Contributions I count the amount of code contribution. I only count free software. More is better.

<b>Other Contributions (Tutorials, Talks, …)</b> This row counts other valueable contributions which do not fit into the categories above, i.e. tutorials, talks etc. More is better.

Communityfactor (WGs, PR,…) How much did the candidate contribute to working groups and local chapters? More is better.

Communication Channels How much community channels does the candidate listen to? How much does he contribute. I only count public channels (i.e. no Facebook and Twitter).

Diversity Candidates get good marks if they either represent a minority or balance the equality and representation of sub-communities or have fresh and new ideas to improve diversity.

Conflict of Interest Candidates with commercial background get bad marks here. If the candidate uses OSM at work but OSM is not important there (i.e. only as background channel), he gets neutral or good marks.

Transparency</b> Candidates get good marks if they support transparency. They only get best marks if they strongly support open voting.

Ideas for Community Involvement Candidates without ideas get bad marks. Candidates with new and fresh ideas get good marks.

Who to serve? Candidates saying OSMF should serve the project and its community get better marks. I do not like candidates who say OSMF should serve its members because companies can infiltrate their employees into OSMF (see this request by an employee of an OSM-related company who seems not to be a member voluntarily).

License violations? Candidates who clearly support the current mechanism (cases are handled at local level first and escalated to the License Working Group if nothing works) get good marks.

Imports/Remote Mapping Candidates which are critical of imports and remote mapping get better marks. (I am a German mapper 😉 )

Term limits? I do not score this question because it is so controversial. Therefore I just show the answer in short.

Role of board Candiates get good marks if they write that the board should not try to control OSM.

Paid Mapping Policy? Only candidates who realized the danger of paid editing and support a policy get a good mark. Please note that such a policy can be liberal!

Paid Staff Candidates who support paid staff without calling reasons get bad marks.

Trustworthy Candidates who betrayed the OSMF or might work more for their employers interest than OSM’s interest get bad marks.

I have used the latest version of the Q&A wiki page to generate this table. Therefore all answers which have been posted since Sunday are omitted.

NA = The candidate did not answer the question.


Question Ilya Zverev Peter Barth Guido Stein Mikel Maron Joseph Reeves Ryan Peterson
#Edits (changesets) 1990 2361 29 813 9079 1338
Code Contributions ++ o +
Other Contributions (Tutorials, Talks, …) o + o + + o NA
Working Groups, Local Chapters, semi-official blogs + + + + + NA
Communication Channels + + + + NA + + + + NA
Diversity + + + – – o – –
Possible prejudice/Conflict of Interest ++ + – – – – – – –
Transparency ++ ++ ++ + ++ NA
Ideas for Community Involvement + + + NA o NA
Who to serve? + + + + NA o + NA
License violations? + + + + NA + + NA
Imports/Remote Mapping + ++ NA o NA
Term limits? Yes Neutral NA Neutral Neutral NA
Role of board + + + + NA NA ++ NA
Paid Mapping Policy? + + NA NA o NA
Paid Staff + + NA o + NA
Question Wille Marcel Gonzalo Perez Martijn van Exel Douglas Ssebaggala Yantisa Akhadi
#Edits (changesets) 2426 1422 4221 383 339
Code Contributions + ? ++
Other Contributions (Tutorials, Talks, …) + ? + + ? o
Working Groups, Local Chapters, semi-official blogs + + + + NA o
Communication Channels + + NA + + NA o
Diversity + + ? + +
Possible prejudice/Conflict of Interest + NA – – – – – –
Transparency ++ NA ++ NA ++
Ideas for Community Involvement + NA o NA o
Who to serve? + + NA NA
License violations? + + NA o NA o
Imports/Remote Mapping ++ NA o NA ++
Term limits? No NA NA NA No
Role of board NA NA NA NA NA
Paid Mapping Policy? NA NA – – NA NA
Paid Staff NA – – NA NA


My Suggestion

Every voter assigns a preference (rank) to each candidate. You can also abstain from assigning a rank to all candidates (i.e. leaving some boxes empty). In this case you would dedicate the decisions to the other voters and there preferences would decide. If you really dislike a candidate, you should fill out all boxes and give the last rank to the candidate you dislike most.

I will put the following candidates on my first to fourth rank. I am currently not sure whom of the candidates will get which rank exactly and therefore the following list is not sorted:

  • Ilya Zverv
  • Peter Barth
  • Wille Marcel
  • Martijn van Exel