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This meeting will occur at 9 PM Eastern in #freeculture.


First, we'll get some global SFC business out of the way, then we'll handle local chapter business.

Greetings & Attendance

  • Volunteer to write minutes?
  • Introductions and attendance

Board elections

We will answer these questions:

  • What is the Board?
  • What is involved with being on it?
  • How do you nominate people to run for the Board?
    • Nominations will be asynchronous. We'll make a wiki page, and you can post who you want to nominate on that page and sign your name+chapter. If you're having any trouble doing this, e-mail Asheesh and he'll like do it for you or something.
  • How will the elections work?
  • What is the timeframe for elections?

Rebooting the Core Team

See Bylaws_RC2#Section_2._Core_Team for the nitty gritty details of what the core team is and how it functions. Basically, chapter members can show up to meetings, and once they meet the attendance requirements they can help make decisions about what projects the global SFC org should work on, etc.

  • When will the first new Core Team meeting be? How often shall it meet to start with? (I recommend every two weeks.)

Rebooting the Volunteers

All of the "teams" of volunteers should gather together regularly for a general volunteers meeting, so that they can keep track of what everyone is working on, bring in new people who know they want to volunteer but aren't sure what to volunteer for, and cover projects that require the work of more than one team or that don't fall within the mission of any existing team.

  • I recommend that we hold these meetings every two weeks, alternating with the Core Team meetings.
  • Volunteers mailing list - let's put all volunteers on this one?
  • "Existing" "teams" include the web team, blog team, wiki team, and FC Labs

Shipping to chapters

Care packages are almost ready to be shipped, I just need t-shirt sizes from everyone, and I'm waiting for a package from the EFF to arrive (it shipped on Thursday, should be here by next Thursday, and I hope to ship the packages out a week from now).

  • IMPORTANT: If you have not already registered your chapter, register it ASAP otherwise you may not get a care package.
  • Note: I refuse to ever handle shipping again, so we'll need a paid coordinator or something next year... I hope our Board candidates have a plan. --Nelson

What can we do to help our chapters?

  • What Students for Free Culture materials can we provide to chapters?
    • T-shirts - need a new design for the new name (also more sizes, colors etc.) Some campuses have silk-screening facilities, we should provide our designs to them so that they can print their own.
    • Pamphlet - We need a new up-to-date pamphlet, and we should professionally print some copies, as well as making the source files available to chapters to print their own.
    • Stickers/Buttons - Some campuses have button presses, we just need to make a good design that people can use.
    • We need an art team that is larger than just Karen... can we recruit in art departments at our schools?
  • How can we better publicize events/activities that our chapters are already doing?
  • How can we nicely package events / activities that chapters have already done so that they're easy to replicate at other schools?
  • What speakers/events can we help book for our chapters? (Hosting a traveling speaker / event can be easier than other sorts of activism for a small chapter.)
    • Digital Freedom? See their series of campus copyright debates.
    • Actual decisions on this question will have to be made by the Core Team / Board, and until the Board appoints a Coordinator all and any of this work will have to be done by Volunteers... this might be a bit of a longer-term idea. On the other hand, we already helped out with the Free Culture Tour back in the day.
  • What services could we provide aside from shipping care packages and providing webspace?

How do you start/operate a chapter?

We'll close the meeting with this perennial question which could take years to answer completely. People who have to leave can leave at this point, but I hope that everyone will stay to talk with the new chapters and help them get rolling.



LaRacuente (Swarthmore College), Nicholas Bergson-Shilcock (Columbia University), Christina Ducruet (Brown University), Nelson Pavlosky (George Mason Law), Ben Mazer (Swarthmore College), Alex Kozak (UC Berkeley), WIlhelmina Randtke (Florida State), Conley (Virgina Tech), Frank (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute), Elizabeth (Harvard Law School).

Nick will take minutes

New organizational structure

Nelson explained the basic structure of Students for Free Culture, which has three basic levels:

  1. The highest level is the Board of Directors, which has 5 members that are elected by the chapters. This makes the high-level, long term decisions
  2. The Core Team, which is composed of whatever chapter members that meet the attendance requirements (making 2 meetings in a row). This makes the mid-level decisions, like what projects we will work on next.
  3. The Volunteers / Coordinator. We'll let individual volunteers make low level decisions, e.g. the Core Team decides "let's make t-shirts!" and they assign the t-shirt-making job to some poor volunteer. Ideally we'll have Coordinator who ought to be a paid employee who handles the really boring grunt work, e.g., shipping packages.

The Board should not be micromanaging the organization, and therefore should not be an absurdly large time commitment. The board must meet at least once a semester, and should not have regular meetings more than twice a month. Crucially, the Board generally cannot make decisions without having an actual meeting, so there won't be huge amounts of voting by e-mail either. So as a Board member you would be setting general policy for the org and solving big questions like "how can we improve SFC's effectiveness?"

Board Nominations

Who should validate the nominations?

  • Nelson will send out an e-mail asking for a volunteer
    • Deadline for nominations: Midnight PST on Sunday, Oct. 28th
    • Qualifications: impartial -- i.e., volunteer should not be running for the board
    • Responsibilities: validate nominees, post bios to the wiki

Election schedule:

  • Oct. 28 Nominations due, bios posted
  • Oct. 28-Nov. 4 Debates,
  • Nov. 4 to 18 Elections open

After the election, the new Board will call a meeting and the old Board will hand over the reins.

Rebooting the Core Team

  • The Core Team consists of chapter representatives who have attended at least 2 meetings, and are in charge of mid level decisions
  • Per the bylaws, Core Team members must 1) be part of a recognized chapter, and 2) not have graduated.
  • Nelson will send out an e-mail calling for the first meeting (meeting should happen by the end of Oct.; tentatively Sunday the 28th)

Rebooting the Volunteers

  • Teams will come and go like "task forces"
  • As the Core Team decides on projects, they can delegate to the volunteers and create task forces on a project by project basis
  • Teams already in place (e.g., the Web Team) will remain
  • Volunteers mailing list
  • Meetings will be held every two weeks