Rich0's Gentoo Blog

The Foundation Activity Tracker

with 4 comments

If you haven’t noticed on gentoo-nfp, I’ve created an activity tracking page (with the help of David Abbot) to track periodic compliance activities for the Foundation.

Some have asked why do this, and why not simply use the Gentoo Calendar/etc to accomplish this?

My thinking is that the current tools do not go far enough. When the whole fiasco on the list about tax documents broke out a few months ago I started reading up and took more of an interest in these matters. What I’ve found is that truly staying on top of these kinds of activities involves a decent learning curve and quite a bit of organization. Even big corporations like Microsoft have let domains expire/etc. There are some activities that are just too important to allow to get lost in the shuffle.

My goal is for the activity tracker to turn into a one-stop-shop for any kind of recurring activity that the Foundation has to perform either due to strict regulatory compliance (like filing our taxes), or because it is just REALLY important (like renewing our domain name – though the scope of responsibility on that one is unclear to me).

The site is not going to be about work-in-progress or any kind of one-time events. I think that Bugzilla already is working fine for this. In fact, ideally I’d anticipate that any recurring activity like a tax filing would be associated with a series of bugs for each time it was performed.

Suggestions from the community are of course welcome. As anybody can see it is clearly a work in progress. However, I envision a day not long in the future where anybody can see an index of things that need to be done, when they need to be done next, and links to detailed pages on how to do them, and the results of having done them in the past. A volunteer wanting to take on some filing would be able to quickly learn everything they need to do it efficiently, freeing up Officers to supervise more. Or, when Officers do perform the work it will be done more consistently with fewer omissions, and links to tools, templates, and related materials will speed up the work.

And for the record, I think the volunteers managing the Foundation in the past few years have been doing a good job. This is hard work, and in any distributed organization staying on top of this is harder. In many cases they’ve inherited a bit of a mess and are doing their best to clean it up. The goal here is to make our problems and their solutions more transparent to all.

Once we’re done any concerned member of the community should be able to go down the list and audit us (well, to the extent we’re able to divulge things). If somebody notices a date coming up and no bug filed, they can file a bug or ping a trustee to make sure we’re doing our job. Sure, it might result in occasional embarrassment, but better that than serious non-compliance.

Written by rich0

July 19, 2011 at 4:24 pm

4 Responses

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  1. Thanks to you and David who are working on this — it is an clear need to properly run the Foundation. Also thanks to the Gentoo Artwork Project who are ensuring that the Gentoo artwork is properly managed. The Foundation is starting to look pretty professional 🙂

    Now I need to create one of these for myself… 🙂

    Best Regards,

    Daniel Robbins

    Daniel Robbins

    July 22, 2011 at 1:18 pm

  2. Off topic but what is the wordpress plugin you use for your comment entry? I really like it.

    — Travis (@gentoovps)

    September 3, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    • I’m just hosting on, and I don’t know that they even support plugins (at least not user-supplied ones). I don’t think I changed anything around the comment mechanism. Perhaps it comes with the theme (The Journalist).


      September 3, 2011 at 5:51 pm

      • Yeah, it looks like a only think for now … although there is some mention of it being released with their jetpack plugin sometime soon. Thanks.
        — Travis (@gentoovps)

        September 4, 2011 at 12:20 pm

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