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[Debconf-team] [DRAFT] Call for Help: DebConf14 travel sponsorship team

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Hi all,

I just want to sync-up and get some feedback before sending the
message to debian-devel-announce on the weekend, this email is
based on 

- ---- 8< ----- 8< ----- 8< ----- 8< ----- 8< -----
To: debian-devel-announce@lists.debian.org
Subject: Call for Help: DebConf14 travel sponsorship team

Hi all,

We are assembling this year's Travel Sponsorship Team to help us
rate the travel sponsorship requests for DebConf14.  We will
follow most of the past years' procedures, always trying to
improve on, specially on transparency.

Are you interested in helping us?

What is this "Travel Sponsorship Team" all about?

A very important part of the DebConf organization is the rating of
travel sponsorship requests -- always a hard problem to work out,
that involves people and social interaction. And although we have
come up with some alternative ideas, we seem to have consensus on
staying with the previous years' scheme: Have a team go through
the requests, rate them, and assign the money we have for that.
This team, the Team of a Thousand Names, is usually referred to
within the general DebConf organizing team as "Travel Sponsorship
Team", "Travel Bursaries Team" or simply "Herb".

Obviously, the problem is much harder than just assigning the
money to the various _tasks_ we have to do, as this decision
directly affects individuals.  We have tried in the past to
include in our team people from various areas of Debian, from
different geographic origins, even with diffrent group of friends,
in order to avoid "clique-based" rating, or in any way biasing the

Once again we are repeating the idea of broad call for help, using
d-d-a to hopefully reach a bigger part of Debian, as it is Debian
funds we will be using and it is Debian-related people (whether DDs,
DMs or other contributors) we will be assigning it to.

What do we need from those who volunteer?

The deadline for requesting sponsorship is on Sunday 2014-05-15,
and we are aiming at producing the results by June 1st, 2014, a

First, some time and patience. You will have to go through the
amount of people requesting travel sponsorship (you can expect
it to be between 50-150 people), look at their reasoning as to
why they are requesting it, how reasonable their requested amount
sounds (yes, "reasonable" is too broad a word -- the team will
have to decide about it), and rate numerically.  Usually, once the
requests are rated, we define a cutoff value.

Second, an extra bit of time and patience.  Once the list is
mostly-done, we usually have an IRC meeting to make sure the
produced list looks sane, and to find any hiccups before they
explode.  And if they explode, believe me, it can be ugly. But
they don't have to explode at all, as we are nice and careful ;-)

Finally, to meet the requests for transparency, we have to report
our work, without breaching the privacy of the people who request
this sponsorship (again, as this is a very personal, social and
money-related topic, it can be very touchy). So, the work will
not finish by June 1st, but somewhat later, quite probably a bit
after DebConf itself.

Again: You don't have to be a DebConf long-time organizer nor
attendee.  You don't have to be a many-years-long DD.  We want
the group to be diverse, and that *surely* includes people that
simply are not in the same intra-Debian demographic group that
most of us are.

So, if you want to be a part of the team, please reply to
debconf-team @ lists.debconf.org letting us know.

We are aiming to have a group of ~15 people to be large enough,
but not too large.

Thank you!
- -- 
Felipe Augusto van de Wiel (faw) <faw@funlabs.org>
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Comment: Using GnuPG with Mozilla - http://enigmail.mozdev.org/


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