Archive:Board meeting 2018-07-17

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Summary of the Board meeting on Tuesday, 17th July 2018.



1. openSUSE Foundation and alternative organizations

The Board discussed the historical efforts by the Project to move towards a foundation or greater independence in the past. Previous motivations, such as the situation with past sponsors (Novell) were discussed and recognised to no longer apply to the current healthy relationship between SUSE & openSUSE. However situations like the sponsorship from Google for GSoC is one area identified where some sort of independent financial services would be beneficial for openSUSE. The use of service provides like SPI, Linux Foundation, and FFIS (and others) were actively discussed and will continue to be investigated. The Board agreed on the principle of being as transparent as possible with any project finances, while remaining compliant with any legal regulations and rules imposed by any sponsors or service providers.

The Board also discussed SUSE's recent acquisition with EQT. While the Board trusts and is reassured by SUSE's assurances of ongoing support, the Board did identify the risk of any subsequent owners of SUSE potentially changing the nature of SUSE's relationship with openSUSE. As SUSE currently have legal ownership of the openSUSE trademarks, any negative move by any future owners of SUSE could be of great negative impact to the openSUSE Project. The Board is therefore investigating the possibility of some sort of 'continuity agreement' between SUSE & openSUSE that would insulate and immunise the Project from such risks, while preserving the status quo the Project currently enjoys with it's healthy relationship with SUSE.

The opinion was raised that if either 'track' of these investigations lead to proposals that could be considered 'major constitutional change' of the Project, that such a change should be ratified by a Membership vote. There was no disagreement with this opinion.

2. openSUSE Asia Summit

The Board will be represented at the openSUSE Asia summit by Ana and Simon.

3. Contributor Conflict #1

The Board is currently dealing with a conflict between two contributors. Gertjan has volunteered to take the lead in mediating the conflict, but standard Board practice would demand an assistant. Richard & Simon both consider themselves ineligible to assist due to their working relationships with both contributors. Due to his skillset and expertise in similar areas to the contributors, it was suggested Christian would be a perfect candidate for assisting Gertjan. Christian agreed, with the expectation that most of the correspondence will be done via email to fit with everyones schedules.

4. Contributor Conflict #2

The Board discussed a historic and only partially resolved conflict reported from our IRC channels. Ana and Richard will be discussing the outstanding topics with the respective contributor.

5. oSC18 post mortem

The Chairman shared some details of SUSE's internal post mortem regarding their contributions to openSUSE Conference 2018. SUSE are taking steps to better organise such contributions to future openSUSE Conferences.

The Board also briefly discussed whether or not it is appropriate for the Board to identify and praise specific contributors by name, such as after exceptional contribution to openSUSE. This topic of debate remains open to be raised again in a future Board meeting.