[svlug] Rebuttal to "ISSUE: SVLUG's continued status with SBAY"
ikluft at thunder.sbay.org
Wed Feb 15 16:59:48 PST 2006
This is also at http://corp.sbay.org/board/svlug-con-rebuttal-20060215.html
This is a response from the sbay.org Board of Directors to Paul Reed's
message to SVLUG on Feb 13, 2006, "ISSUE: SVLUG's continued status with
SBAY". The message states only downsides of the merger between sbay.org
and SVLUG. We'll try to set the record straight and restore some balance
to the discussion.
One of the concerns brought up was that the sbay.org By-Laws (the
document we filed with the State of California which says how the
organization operates) have a clause in Article 12 covering SIGs which
haven't written a charter, treating their leadership as appointed
positions within sbay.org. The obvious solution is to finish writing
SVLUG's charter, so that rule won't be in effect any more. A charter was
started, trying to make an initial pass of writing down SVLUG's own
traditions. But it hasn't been finished yet because SVLUG's leaders didn't
respond when they were asked for input. After this issue is resolved, that
should hopefully become a priority again.
See for yourself...
Another concern was that sbay.org hasn't purchased liability insurance
yet. SVLUG has no urgent need for that right now (since its meeting
location does not require it), and hadn't requested it. The reason why
sbay.org does need to get it now has entirely come from the Stratofox
Aerospace Tracking Team and the Silicon Valley Wireless Users &
Experimenters (SVWUX), both of whom recently installed radio repeater
equipment on mountain sites. One of the reasons why this has taken some
time is because most insurance made for non-profit organizations is only
for 501(c)3 charities, not 501(c)7 hobby clubs. We continue to search and
will accept new leads if members are aware of any. If care is not taken,
premiums will end up more expensive, taking a bigger bite out of the
treasury, which will come from membership dues we'll begin collecting
(voluntarily) this year.
It's apparent that Paul main argument is "time's up", where no need or
deadline had been made before. There was no timeline for the incorporation
process other than to do things as they became necessary. Yes, there has
been procrastination - it's a volunteer group. The time to begin these
things has arrived because of the three other SIGs, not because of
anything SVLUG asked for or needed.
Where's the problem?
One of the complaints in the article is a complete puzzle to us. It said,
"...SVLUG is constrained by SBAY's charter in the types of activities it[s
members] can engage in." In reality, SVLUG hasn't been barred from doing
anything. And we don't expect that it would be. One member of both
sbay.org and SVLUG put it this way, "If SVLUG wanted to go to the Moon,
SBAY would call in Stratofox to support the launch." That's a far more
accurate description of how we'd try to approach this.
A question was asked at the Feb 1, 2006 SVLUG meeting, "Has SBAY done
anything abusive or wrong." Paul's answer: "Well... no." So that doesn't
seem to have been a problem.
Another question was asked, "What projects does SVLUG want to engage in
that we're barred from doing now?" With a pause to come up with something,
the example was that if SVLUG wanted to set up a wireless network, that
might not be allowed because SVWUX set up a WiFi repeater on a mountain.
Interestingly, that question had been asked by the person who set up
SVLUG's wireless network in the room. The ESSID was "SVLUG". So that
doesn't seem to have been a problem.
Another question was asked, "How many members of the SBAY Board are SVLUG
members?" Paul's answer, "I don't know. Maybe all of them." Yes, that's
right - including John Delaney who asked the question. We think Paul would
have known that and avoided this whole situation if he had chosen to be
more involved. So that doesn't seem to have been a problem.
So these "problems" have turned out to be only hypothetical. In most cases
the complaints are things that hadn't been requested at all.
If you think it's a good idea to encourage local Open Source and
electronic communications groups to work together, then say so when the
poll comes, which will apparently be by a voice vote at the March 1 SVLUG
meeting. These are some of the coolest geek organizations in Silicon
Valley. Common participants and common interests are the reasons why they
gravitated together. Those are still valid reasons today.
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