Debian as an Associate Member of the OpenInfra Foundation

From: Jeremy Stanley <fungi(at)yuggoth(dot)org>
To: spi-general(at)lists(dot)spi-inc(dot)org
Subject: Debian as an Associate Member of the OpenInfra Foundation
Date: 2021-12-10 18:50:10
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Early in the history of the OpenStack Project, Debian became a
Supporting Organization of the OpenStack Foundation. As I understand
it, Bdale Garbee (one of the SPI Directors at the time) signed a
logo agreement so that Debian could be included in the Supporting
Organizations list of the Web site. Debian continues
to hold the distinction of being the only community-maintained
OpenStack distribution included in the OpenStack "Marketplace" at (all the others
listed are backed by member companies of the foundation).

In an effort to increase accountability to its members and board of
directors for outreach activities involving other non-profit
organizations, as well as strengthen cross-organizational
relationships, the Open Infrastructure Foundation (formerly
OpenStack Foundation) has recently created a new non-paying
Associate Member organization class. As such, I'm writing to inquire
into the possibility of having Debian (or SPI on Debian's behalf)
become an Associate Member of the Open Infrastructure Foundation.

The process would be similar to that of the logo agreement signed
some years ago; there's no obligation for Debian or SPI, it's merely
a gratis extension of member organization benefits by the Open
Infrastructure Foundation to the Debian project and community,
including continued representation in the OpenStack Marketplace. I
brought this up with Debian Developers Thomas Goirand and Michal
Arbet (maintainers for most of the OpenStack packages in Debian) in
the #debian-openstack channel on OFTC last week, and they seemed
supportive of the idea, suggesting the next step was probably to
raise the topic here on SPI's general mailing list.

I know from the Organizational Structure page on the Debian site
that the project is already a member of similar organizations like
the GNOME Foundation and OSI. There are many DDs with prominent
leadership roles in the OpenStack project and Open Infrastructure
Foundation, present and past (including project team leaders,
technical committee members, foundation directors, even the current
chairperson for the board of directors is a DD), so I can almost
certainly get one or more of them to volunteer to serve as a liaison
given I'm not personally a contributing member of SPI (not yet, at
any rate).

Am I asking in the right place? Are there any initial concerns with
the proposal? And what would the next steps be? For reference, here
are more details on Associate Membership (I can also supply a copy
of the agreement text here on-list for review if that's preferable):

> The Associate member class is an Open Infrastructure Foundation
> ("the Foundation") member class that does not have a vote for a
> member of the Board of Directors to represent it, or a vote on any
> other matter. It was created on June 29, 2021 by a resolution of
> the Foundation Board of Directors, under the provision of section
> 2.1 of the Foundation bylaws.
> The Associate class is open to two types of organizations:
> non-profit organizations sustaining open infrastructure projects,
> and notable academic and public research institutions making
> extensive use of open infrastructure projects. The Executive
> Director of the Foundation has authority to admit and terminate
> members of the Associate Class.
> The Associate class does not require any membership fee. Members
> of the Associate class support the Foundation mission by
> associating their organization name with it and allowing the
> Foundation to promote that association. For non-profit
> organizations sustaining open infrastructure projects, the
> Foundation in return may reciprocate through membership in
> equivalent affiliate membership programs, engage in co-marketing
> opportunities or sharing events. For notable academic and public
> research institutions making extensive use of open infrastructure
> projects, they benefit in return from the Foundation support of
> their activities like any other Foundation member, through
> programs like job posting promotion or help in navigating our open
> source communities.

Jeremy Stanley, Open Infrastructure Foundation Staff


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