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Re: [board-discuss] Questions for the candidates to the board of directors of the Document Foundation


On Mon, Nov 2, 2015 at 4:38 PM, Charles-H. Schulz
<charles.schulz@documentfoundation.org> wrote:
Dear candidates to the board of directors of the Document Foundation,

1. Do you commit yourself to have enough time and the necessary
technological tools in order to participate to the regularly scheduled board
calls?
I have made the time in the past five years for the ESC, for the
Membership Committee, for which I wrote the 'technological tools', and
for the BoD.


2. Do you commit yourself to follow up and work on (at least) the main items
and actions you have volunteered to oversee or that have been attributed to
you by the board?

Yes, by 'volunteering' to do a task, by definition I commit myself to
doing it... No I do not commit myself to be designated volunteer and
be 'attributed' task without my consent. In practice I have a very
good attendance record, and I tend to deliver what I promise and try
not to over-promise.



3. What are your views on the foundation's budget? How should the money be
spent, besides our fixed costs?

There is no reason to exclude our 'fixed' cost of the analysis.
In fact, rampant increase of fixed/recurring cost is a concern to me,
as such can make it painful to adjust our expense level to a
fluctuating income stream.
as for how the money should be spent: as I said in my earlier statement:

+ Favor spending directed directly to support the community of
volunteer to have the tools needed to work, to be able to communicate
and interact with each other.
+ Favor project driven by volunteer committed to bring them to
fruition. In other work, helping those that are helping themselves

In other words: if you need resource to support your volunteer
efforts, you'll find a sympathetic hear.
If you just want money to be thrown at a problem, but are not willing
to actually do anything about it yourself... then I'm much, much more
reluctant.



4. Should we work towards broadening our pool of contributors, both
technical and non-technical?
Why the artificial divide ? and why the focus on this particular axe.
Of course the more _contributors_ the better. There are plenty of
activities that can benefit from even more contributors, all of them
are 'technical' in their own right, from Documentation to Coding, from
QA to l10n, from Infra to RelEng, each of these activities and plenty
others, need skills and hard work, each require the mastery of some
techniques.

In any case it is misunderstanding the role and power of the board, to
reduce the growing of the community to the Board's will.



5. Should the Foundation -as an entity distinct from the LibreOffice project
or the Document Liberation project- engage into growing its influence and
promoting and defending Free Software and Digital Freedom? It is, after all,
an integral part of its mission per its very Statutes.

It is a bit troubling when you answer your own questions.

Of course what the statues actually say is:
"spreading the philosophical and cultural ideals of FLOSS"

I certainly agree with that.



6. How do you view your (potential) role as a member of the board of
directors, given that this position does not give you any specific
functional role inside the LibreOffice or Document Liberation projects?

I view my role in the BoD as a steward. My goal is to make sure that
the 10's of thousand of 10 euros donations entrusted to us by
individuals all over the world are spent wisely and fairly -- within
the legal constraints imposed on the foundation -- on things that
support the community that make these projects exists and thrive.
The board is not a group of exalted visionaries. The board is an
administrative body whose function is to insure and orderly
functioning of the Foundation itself -- work which mostly consist in
administrative trivia.
The foundation's purpose is to provide a home to the community of
volunteers.. the volunteers are the one that bring visions and
direction by they collective work.
The BoD is not a 'leader' it is a 'Shepard'




7. What is the biggest problem of the foundation in your opinion? What is
its biggest opportunity?

Both boils down to the same topic.
On one hand the foundation benefit from a wide support by the public,
providing it with substantial financial support, on the other hand,
as a foundation we have some difficulties to 'execute'. We are a
volunteer and meritocratic organization. that means, to me, that we,
as a board, should support the volunteer that show up to work, and
discourage the make-a-whish attitude.

Norbert

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