Marspedia:Council Minutes 10/20/2017
Minutes for the Marspedia Governing Council's Initial Meeting - October 20, 2017
Susan Holden Martin
Rosalie Dieteman (was late but still present to vote on Bylaws!)
Election of Officers
Susan Martin was nominated by James Burk to be Chair of the Council.
Susan Martin was elected unanimously to be Chair.
James Burk was nominated by Susan Martin to be Vice Chair of the Council.
Bruce Mackenzie expressed his own reservations of James being the Vice Chair based on what he witnessed during the process where the bylaws were written. He felt James was "heavy-handed and pushed things without other people being up to speed." However he did not object to James being Vice Chair. Lucinda Offer mentioned the importance of people from other organizations stepping up to take leadership positions with Marspedia to keep things fair and even.
James Burk was elected unanimously to be Vice Chair. (Bruce Mackenzie abstained.)
Approval of Bylaws
The complete Bylaws were read by James Burk, with some additional commentary provided to provide details on the rationale for the exact wording of several sections of the Bylaws.
James Gholston reminded everybody that these Bylaws were not final and need to be approved at this meeting.
James Gholston mentioned that he doesn't consider himself an Ex-Officio member since he does not have an official office with Moon Society related to wikis. James Burk agreed to remove his Ex-Officio designation and make him a normal Voting Member of the Council.
James Gholston brought up that there is no provision for a Founding Organization to leave the Council and would still be subject to the prohibition of forking. James Gholston was not willing to propose new language for an amendment to the bylaws to address this issue. Bruce Mackenzie stressed that it is important for all of the organizations to work together. We discussed the need for bylaws language to handle if a Founding Organization pulled out and agreed to table this for now and have a separate meeting to address this issue.
Bruce Mackenzie mentioned his concerns that he would have preferred a memorandum of understanding instead of a bylaws document. He also would have preferred the council to be a bunch of individuals without any organizational affiliation. Susan Martin mentioned that since the Bylaws ask for the Founding Organizations to each designate one or more representatives to the Council, it makes sense to have us have affiliations.
The council unanimously approved the Bylaws as they were currently written.
Formation of Standing Subcommittees
James Burk made the following proposal:
Create an Editorial Subcommittee with the following marching orders: we need to determine what content is needed on the wiki, the process for assigning out & approving new content, and how the editorial committee can keep momentum, either through regular weekly working sessions or some of type of Slack-like tool. It would be great to redesign the home page as well to add some graphics and make it easy for new volunteers to plug in quickly.
Create a Technical Subcommittee with the following marching orders: first order of business is to review & secure who has permissions on the wiki and how to best organize the roles in Mediawiki. For example, we'll likely need a role for non-technical people that can edit protected pages but not necessarily be an admin of the whole wiki. Also we need to determine who has database & source code access. Right now it is only James Burk and Bruce Mackenzie, and we would give access to additional people that would work on the technical aspects of the wiki. Also, we can talk about how else to improve the wiki including the implementation of anti-spam bots.
Having no objections or discussion, these proposals were approved.
Bruce Mackenzie mentioned the opportunity for the other wikis to be hosted on the same server as Marspedia, which he will be suggesting to the Moon Society and they can decide what they want to do. There were no objections from this Council to this.
Bruce Mackenzie reported that he recently met with people from the Mars Initiative, but nobody from that organization was interested in working on Marspedia.
James Burk mentioned that anybody on the Council can join either or both of the subcommittees and more details on their formation & activities as well as the schedule for the next Council meeting will be provided to the Council eList soon.