[Foundation-l] Provisional Volunteer Council - proposal sent to the Board

Birgitte SB birgitte_sb at yahoo.com
Wed Apr 2 12:00:12 UTC 2008

The one legal question I brought up earlier, is that
if the VC is tied in to governing structure of WMF it
might be a problem for them to be making any decision
on content or dealing with sysop complaints etc.  Of
course they can be more advisory not be governing or
they can stay away from the issues the WMF has
historically stayed away from.


--- Mike Godwin <mgodwin at wikimedia.org> wrote:

>   Lodewijk writes:
> > Hi Mike,
> >
> > are you suggesting here that a provisional council
> with the details as
> > outlined could have any impact on any status at
> all?
> No, I asked about the larger proposal for a
> Volunteer Council as a  
> permanent alteration of corporate governance for the
> Foundation. I've  
> read the discussions here, and am trying to get a
> clear idea of what  
> the ultimate goal is.   If the ultimate goal is to
> change the  
> Foundation's corporate governance in some
> fundamental way, then I  
> think we have to consider whether the changes are
> consistent with  
> Florida non-profit corporation law. There may also
> be tax or other  
> legal dimensions to such a change.  I had been
> assuming somebody would  
> bring up these issue at some point, but since no one
> has, I thought  
> I'd raise the question, in case I'd missed
> something.
> Thomas Dalton writes:
> > I would expect the board to consult you on that
> before they pass the
> > resolution. I wouldn't expect the provisional
> council to cause any
> > problems - if it gets any binding decision making
> power there may be
> > technicalities to consider.
> Certainly, but it would a shame, in my view, if a
> significant  
> proportion of the community asked the Board to
> change the Foundation's  
> governance structure -- as the result of a
> face-to-face gathering for  
> hours or days in Europe -- only to be told at the
> end of the process  
> "Sorry, we can't do what you asked for," then I
> think a lot of bad  
> feelings might result.  I think it's better to ask
> the legal questions  
> earlier rather than later.
> --Mike
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