On Mon, Nov 3, 2008 at 12:27 AM, Thomas Dalton <thomas.dalton(a)gmail.com>wrote;wrote:
Sure you can.
Why can't you help the chapters draft their bylaws for
the general things that do not require specific legal knowledge of
that particular country? Surely ChapCom has a relatively standard
framework that they can provide for the chapters to modify as they
need. If not, that's a failure on the committee's part for not being
From my experience with the (second) UK chapter, a Wikimedia framework
would be pretty useless. Most of the governing documents of a
charitable organisation are determined by the relevant laws. We
started with a framework from the UK charity commission and modified
that to suit our needs, I would expect other countries to be similar.
We followed a similar route, and looking at the other chapters' homepages,
they have done the same, but one thing is common through all the
differences: the part that says what are the given chapter's goals and
I believe a guide stating, that these are the sample goals that you should
incorporate into your bylaws, would be very helpful.
Also a list of activities based on the other chapters, in a
choose-all-that-applies fashion would also be helpful.
Having such a framework would actually speed up the drafting time of most
bylaws I believe (as valuable time could be devoted to the other minutia of
the sample bylaws a community is working with).
This framework on the other hand would remove any room for the ChapCom to
decide, as the bylaws per definition would be approvable. Yet, I believe an
enthusiastic community, determination and some other human factors might be
more important than to have the best bylaws (you can always modify them
later; if there's a legal problem the Court will just give it back to you
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