[Announce] [Linuxchix-announce] Resignation as coordinator

Mary Gardiner coordinator at linuxchix.org
Wed Jun 13 01:19:38 UTC 2007

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Hi everyone,

This is of course very difficult, but for various reasons I now believe
that I'm not an appropriate coordinator for LinuxChix, due to a fairly
major mismatch in goals. LinuxChix should be run by someone with a
better relationship with its current (implicit) goals.

Regarding the ongoing dispute over IRC administration, yes that's part
of it and has illuminated for me many of the ways that I'm not a good
fit for LinuxChix as coordinator, that many of my goals are best
achieved elsewhere.

I'm very pleased with many of the changes I've made to LinuxChix
infrastructure during my time as coordinator: particularly the new
website team under Brenda and the larger sysadmin team. I hope they will
serve LinuxChix well in the future.

-- What now? --

I do not have sole control over any LinuxChix infrastructure. As best I
know, the complete LinuxChix infrastructure is:

 - the linuxchix.org machine at OSUOSL, to which Dancer Vesperman,
   Charlotte Oliver, Joh Clarke (Sharrow) and Terri Oda have full access
   (contact sysadmin at linuxchix.org)

 - the mailing lists, to which the sysadmins have full access and
   several others have full web access

 - the linuxchix.org domain name, which is in my name and that should be
   changed, but to which the sysadmins already have full edit and change

 - the www.linuxchix.org website, to which Brenda Wallace and Angela
   Byron have full access (and the sysadmins could get it). They can be
   contacted at webadmin at linuxchix.org

 - the irc.linuxchix.org IRC server, Val Henson has supplied all
   relevant passwords to sysadmin at linuxchix.org

Val has removed herself and myself from the o:lines and other such
things on IRC, I still have considerable access to things like the box
and the website that should be removed, as I will not be volunteering
actively in the near future.

The coordinator at linuxchix.org address should be removed or pointed

Regarding leadership of LinuxChix in the future I suggest that the
volunteers list (open subscription, subscribe
http://mailman.linuxchix.org/mailman/listinfo/volunteers ) discuss it. I
will remain subscribed there until at least the end of the month and can
act as a tie-breaker if there seems to be sufficient call for it. I've
appended below my original two year programme for coordinatorship, I
still think many parts of them are worthwhile and LinuxChix is welcome
to my ideas.


-- Mary's original plan as coordinator, steal these ideas if you like --

First three months

Ideally I'd spend this time making no changes, but just talking to
people and listening to what they have to say about LinuxChix. It has
recently become apparent that actually there will be a bunch of things
being changed, or at least defined, during that time, such as the
website and perhaps the relationship between the IRC volunteers and the
coordinator.  The website effort in particular is bursting with energy.

However, in this time I'd mostly like to be talking and listening. I'd
particularly like to talk to the chapters, for reasons you will see in
my next mail but also to this group, about what they want LinuxChix to

Rest of the first year

This would be a time of focussing on improving and refining our existing
setup as much as possible: making sure we've identified all the things
about LinuxChix that volunteers should be managing, making sure there
are volunteers who manage them, and that new volunteers can start to
take on those tasks. Just as there shouldn't be only one person believed
capable of being coordinator, there also shouldn't be only one person
believed capable of any other role.

I see these as our core volunteer managed areas at the moment. I have
separated a few things currently done by one set of volunteers — eg,
both mailing list administration and social management is mostly done by
the same people — that don't *have* to be done by the same people.
 - mailing list administration (moderation etc)
 - mailing list social management (stopping flamewars, preventing off
   topicness etc)
 - IRC administration
 - IRC social management
 - courses administration (providing infrastructure to people running
 - running courses
 - systems administration
 - website maintainence (infrastructure)
 - website content (can be subdivided many times)
 - chapter administration (providing infrastructure to chapters, which
   is just the chapter listing at the moment)
 - sponsorship administration (Val does this at the moment, as our
   contact with Intel)

There's also one fairly obvious addition from the way the Australian
Linux community runs: people to work with the press.

I don't propose radically changing how any of these work. However, all
of them could benefit from documenting how they work, and some from some
additions to their process or to the number of volunteers doing them.

I or other core volunteers would also be aiming during this time to
specify any new projects that came out of the discussion in the first
three months, or that emerge from this documentation of what the
volunteers do. If I specify them, I would aim to hand them over to
someone else for implementation if at all possible, another core
volunteer might specify a project and do it herself.

The second year

With our processes firmly in place, and hopefully a new wave of
enthusiastic capable volunteers joining us to help us manage our various
areas of volunteer responsibility (I listed 12! wow!), I think this
would be a good time to start a discussion followed by work in
formalising LinuxChix in the sense of making us an organisation that has
a bank account, whatever that takes.

There are lots of reasons we have never done this, and they might
continue to hold. But all of the talk about incorporating or
officalising LinuxChix is really talk about having a bank account,
sponsors and processes to manage the funds therein. There *are* lots of
things we could do with money:
 - travel sponsorship for Chix
 - money for local or global Chix events
 - money for equipment needed for Chix projects, such as servers, other

There are other ways to do this (developing, for example, a relationship
with another organisation that could manage the money on our behalf,
accepting sponsorships, as with our hosting, in non-cash form) but since
it could be immensely beneficial, and it does keep coming up, so I do
nk that the next coordinator should seriously look at the problem,
scope the work, and make a decision (probably based on volunteer
enthusiam and ability) for the next few years of whether or not it's
actually going to happen.

It's entirely possible that this is actually more than nine months work
and could go into the new coordinator's tenure. But during this time I'd
at least like to have the work scoped and the pros and cons nailed down.

The last three months

At the beginning of this time, a new coordinator would be chosen. During
this time I would remain coordinator while the new coordinator
(probably) held her own introductory discussions and set up her agenda
for her own term. At the end of it, I would officially hand over, and
presumably remain around as a volunteer.
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