Monthly Meeting - 2008-01-08

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Contents

Free Geek General Meeting Minutes

08 Jan 2008 @ 6:30pm

Roles

  • Facilitator: Ashley
  • Regulator: Bernie
  • Scribe: Roc
  • Minutes Checker: Sean H

PRESENT

  • Ashley
  • Bernie
  • David
  • Ifny
  • Phillip
  • Simon
  • Roc
  • Ryan
  • Sean H
  • Sean M


OLD BUSINESS Agenda

Letter to ISPs Training for helpers Sublease

Old Business

LETTER TO ISPs: Ashley presents

  • Ashley has written a rough draft and sent it to Communications List Serve, asking for free internet access.
  • Ashley has requested a response from potential ISPs by one week before FG's official opening
  • If anyone wants to read it or edit it, please contact Ashley.
  • Sean H has read it and liked a lot of the things that it said.
  • Ifny: outgoing number of free Geekboxes should be included as this is helpful, especially for media.
  • David suggests March 1 as a date for official opening.

TRAINING FOR EVAL HELPERS: David presents

  • it went well, new faces, new ideas; next month he would like to start it up and have it a little more regularly, especially once we are set up with benches etc.
  • Ifny: people present asked good questions, such as fire safety etc. & suggests that the training meetings will happen more often, like once a month.
  • David: that is what he is thinking, perhaps the first Tuesday
  • After further group discussion, the training sessions will be held once each month, possibly beginning Tues. Feb. 5
  • David: we can put it on a WIKI page and people will be able to look at it.

COMMIT document the training sessions: IFNY & DAVID COMMIT format this WIKI page: RYAN

SUBLEASE: Ifny presents

  • Context: Ifny & Omar (Pedal Depot manager) have been writing the sublease agreement.
  • It wasn't finished in time for moving day.
  • She registered Free Geek with the Pro Bono Legal Society [[1]]
  • They matched us up with a corporate lawyer named Kevin Contzen who has been advising us on the lease.
  • The sublease is still not signed. Subsequent to the lawyer's to the draft, Omar (Pedal Depot manager) became uncomfortable with all the legalese.
  • We are happy with the current version.
  • Joint Space Committee created between FG and Pedal will resolve/discuss such things as garbage, kitchen rules etc; will meet once a month and be binding to both parties. Pedal has agreed to consensus for decision-making on the Joint Space Committee.
  • Omar wants to be able to automatically renew after one year. This is ok, but FG is concerned that if Omar is no longer with Pedal after one year, will his successor be as easy to deal with?
  • Pedal has not paid their January rent yet.
  • Ashley: can we change the language from legalese to something more 'human'?
  • Ifny: the legalese is very specific and if that language is changed, things will not be so clear
  • Sean M: if a judge sees language that is not legalize, s/he will say ”What is this?” and FG's position would be compromised
  • Sean H is concerned about about the rent not being paid
  • Someone asked: should the pro bono lawyer also handle Pedal?
  • David: the new way is, for eg., for a divorce lawyer to handle both the husband and the wife and find a median solution for both David feels that this is not the way to go and prefers the old style of having FG's lawyer doing pro bono only for FG
  • David does not have confidence in Pedal's board
  • Ifny: conditions for eviction are in the sublease. If Pedal interferes in our ability to operate comfortably and safely, they can be evicted. eg. If Pedal welds in the middle of the floor space without ventilation and permits, they can and should be evicted. If rent is not paid, they can be evicted. Omar is concerned that if they can be evicted for minor infractions.
  • Bernie noted that Pedal wants the relationship to be equal, but the relationship is not equal.
  • Roc is not impressed that Pedal has not yet paid their rent and it is January 8. Regardless of the fact that the nitty gritty details are not yet ironed out with the lease, the rent was due at the beginning of the

month

  • Phillilp says that the primary responsibility for the rent is FG's. If the rent is not paid, for example, it is totally FG's responsibility.
  • Sean queried about FG's responsibility for fire insurance
  • Ifny replied that FG is a beneficiary on Pedal's insurance
  • Ashley: these issues need to be dealt with, with finesse, and that a committee cannot do that. He suggests that the people dealing with this attend to it.
  • David: FG has been too wishy-washy. Either Pedal pays their rent or move out. They haven't paid their rent. When we are trying to balance our books, we are off by thousands of dollars. We have spent so much time in this meeting dealing with this business. Pedal has not acted in good faith.
  • Ifny: Pedal told us that rent would be paid on January 4.
  • Ashley: What is our priority: Getting the money or getting the signed lease?
  • Ifny says both; will be meeting with Omar tomorrow. It's important to straighten things out & it's also important to have harmony in the space.
  • She will take her notes from this meeting to Omar.
  • David will give Ifny a list for that meeting as well
  • Sean H. would like to see the money sorted out tomorrow and the lease signed within a week at the latest. No hemming and hawing, but the difficulties sorted out and signed. Otherwise, Pedal should be evicted.
  • Ashley: if Pedal moves out, will FG look for another tenant?
  • Ifny: no, FG would assume the space
  • David is not impressed with the FG/Pedal relationship so far and says that Pedal has not acted in good faith
  • Sean M: we could contact the Pedal board and 'go over Omar's head'.
  • Ifny: the Pedal board can be difficult to deal with, and slow to come to agreement. They meet once a month, and are loathe to meet more often. We're better off dealing with Omar & we have good rapport with him.
  • Ryan: Is Omar aware of Pedal's total financial obligation, to pay by Jan 4th etc?
  • Ifny: yes

COMMIT Re Pedal's rent: Ifny will approach Omar and ask him to pay the rent tomorrow. Otherwise, the rent must be paid by Thursday at the latest (to allow him time to get a cheque from a Pedal director) COMMIT Re Pedal's lease: The general membership instructs Ifny to inform Omar that the lease must be signed within the next seven days.


NEW BUSINESS

  1. Finance
  2. Documentation
  3. Governance Announcements
  4. Reuse List
  5. Workshops
  6. Database Hours
  7. Sponsorship
  8. 2600


FINANCE: presented by David

  • Financial information for the period covering 01/01/07 to 31/12/07:
    • Total Revenue : $31,352.71
    • Total Expenses: $27, 512.62
    • Net Income: $3,840.09


DOCUMENTATION: presented by Ifny

  • Ifny says it is moving along.
  • Ryan will make the wiki accessible from outside the Geek Ifny so she can work on it at home

COMMIT Wiki magic: RYAN COMMIT Documentation sweat: IFNY


GOVERNANCE

  • largely deferred, since Sean was presenting but had to leave early
  • Ifny-AGM is tentatively scheduled for Tues. February 26

COMMIT send out the old minutes from the last governance meeting in the old space: RYAN COMMIT send out the Dec. minutes: IFNY


REUSE LISTS: Philip

  • Phillip would like us to accept digital phones so that he can pass them onto his school. He can bring a letter from the school saying it would really help them out.
  • we will try, but we are worried that it will be hard for volunteers in the database to screen them
  • pictures or a poster to put up will be helpful for identification

COMMIT make a poster describing the types of phones needed: PHILIP


WORKSHOPS: presented by Ifny

  • We should start regular workshops again.We used to have regular workshops on specific topics. Once we moved into our first building, we put those on hold to concentrate on operations and programs. Windowsless Wed is getting

too busy. It will save time because we can teach a lot of people the same thing all at once, rather than individually, good for outreach & buzz too.

  • Sean M: what workshops will there be?
    • there could be Modifying Wikis, Intro to Ubuntu, Open Office, Firefox, Intro to Computing, networking, etc.
  • David: we should only do it if workshops are run by a different group of people (not him, Ryan or Ifny) so that he can start to get a life back. He says we need more helpers at WW
  • Ifny suggests getting word out to Van-LUG, new Ubuntu-SIG, etc for WW helpers
  • Ifny needs time to publicize things & suggests that we set deadlines
Find someone to do a workshop on Thursday Feb 7: IFNY
COMMIT Edit the website event listing for WW to get more helpers: DAVID


DATABASE HOURS

  • Everyone needs to record their hours in the database! We can use the numbers for our own statistics, understanding of operations, and writing grants.

COMMIT create a sign up form that has date, sign in and sign out tomorrow: ASHLEY


2600 Presented by Philip

  • 2600 no longer has a meeting space & they have dwindling members as a result.
  • Phillip would like to use FG space for them to meet. 2600 historically were hackers who used to 'phreak' the phone system, etc; they are now just geeks who like to get together in cities all over the world.
  • There are currently about five regulars at the Vancouver 2600 meetings. 2600 meeting website:

http://www.2600.com/meetings/

  • they meet the first Friday of the month

CONSENSUS Membership feels that 2600 can use FG for meetings, as long as they don't use our network or facilities for anything illegal.

SPONSORSHIP

  • David suggests that if a company helps FG, we need to be flexible and use their names on our website. It is a form of barter.
  • Some people have been against this in the past, but we should be more open & if they are giving us something, we should give them something.
  • Sean M.: what will be the protocol?
  • Ifny says that in the past the issue of including company links was very contentious. There is nothing wrong with doing it to be transparent or say thanks, but if someone says, “We'll give you this if you do this,” then

that would be a problem.

  • We shouldn't seem like we're endorsing a company just because they give us stuff.
  • Sean M: it should be on a case by case basis
  • Ifny: our precedent to date has been to have the logos of the groups we belong to: RCBC & the GLBA. We have done stories to thank orgs who helped us (e.g. Mason Lift)
  • Ashley and Ryan say that FG can blaze its own trail in this regard
  • David: a policy needs to be decided
  • Ryan and Ifny: Thanks are different than endorsement. Comfortable with thanks. Consensus should be required for endorsements.
  • Creation of a thanks page, with links to the companys FG is thanking. It can include what FG is thanking them for.

COMMIT Generate a list of who FG needs to thank: IFNY COMMIT Make a thank you page from the list: DAVID

OTHER BUSINESS

COMMIT by Ryan to have RT for next month's general meeting, so that commits made during that meeting and at meetings in the past will be able to be tracked.

Commits

  1. COMMIT Re Pedal's rent: Ifny will approach Omar and ask him to pay the rent tomorrow. Otherwise, the rent must be paid by Thursday at the latest (to allow him time to get a cheque from a Pedal director)
  2. COMMIT Re Pedal's lease: The general membership instructs Ifny to inform Omar that the lease must be signed within the next seven days.
  3. COMMIT Wiki magic: RYAN
  4. COMMIT Documentation sweat: IFNY
  5. COMMIT make a poster describing the types of phones needed: PHILIP
  6. Find someone to do a workshop on Thursday Feb 7: IFNY
  7. COMMIT Edit the website event listing for WW to get more helpers: DAVID
  8. COMMIT create a sign up form that has date, sign in and sign out tomorrow: ASHLEY
  9. COMMIT Generate a list of who FG needs to thank: IFNY
  10. COMMIT Make a thank you page from the list: DAVID
  11. COMMIT by Ryan to have RT for next month's general meeting, so that commits made during that meeting and at meetings in the past will be able to be tracked.
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