Talk:Building local communities

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Purpose of this page

This page seems in purpose to be largely redundant to Contact channels - it is generally preferable to improve and if advisable rename existing pages than creating new ones.

Apart from that i would reconsider prominently featuring

--Imagico (talk) 16:57, 20 January 2020 (UTC)

The scope of this page is both more limited and wider; I did include a link to the contact page now.
I wouldn't hide tools just because some aspects of them displease some people. Feel free to add a word of warning to the descriptions though.
Regarding your specific comments:
- OSM Teams is oriented to paid editing teams AFAIK, and I think for them that statement is pretty spot on. I would read that tongue in cheek anyway. But might be more productive to ask them to reconsider that phrasing (as well as respecting privacy) rather than complaining on some wiki page (you migjht have done that as well of course)
- I haven't met a repository manager who doesn't control the content of their repository. I'd much rather see this kind of data managed by the OSMF under some sort of democratic control, but here we are. It's always hard to get things done from people in that position, but its not impossible. Anyway, I'll see if I can help fix the issue with the US you point out. If there's an issue with France, this can be fixed by anyone who consults with the French community.
--Joost schouppe (talk) 10:08, 29 January 2020 (UTC)
I am not complaining, i am trying to make sure you are aware of the issues i pointed out. And you should note that these are not things that displease me, they are factual observations. If you choose to address them or deflect and dismiss is totally up to you. --Imagico (talk) 10:41, 29 January 2020 (UTC)
So are you saying welcoming edits, offering an alternative point of view and trying to fix some of the issues is deflecting? Or is it that my interpretation entirely? --Joost schouppe (talk) 12:31, 29 January 2020 (UTC)
Talking about project management styles in response to a comment about the osm-community-index pursuing political goals not in line with community values is in my eyes a deflection. So is the platitude of this page is both more limited and wider.
And i still have no idea what the purpose of this page is to be. It is titled Building local communities - yet it prominently lists a tool that, according to your own assessment, is oriented to paid editing teams. A mapper visiting that page at the moment will likely get the impression that local community in OSM means something that is centrally managed and organized around proprietary platforms and infrastructure designed and maintained by corporate actors. How can i even try to follow your suggestion to edit the page myself if i can't even understand what its purpose is meant to be and why it is separate from Contact channels?
Contact channels could really use improvements but even as it is right now it provides a much better and more comprehensive insight into how local community communication works in OSM (not to mention that it is available in various languages of course - while this page as well as most of the stuff referenced on it is English language only).
--Imagico (talk) 13:45, 29 January 2020 (UTC)

On deflecting: what you are saying is that if you say "this is the truth", I'm not allowed to say "what you observe as the truth is just a current state of affairs, a product of a phenomenon. And it's a state of affairs that we could together change for the better".
My platitude is my own summary of what I understand about the goal of this page. There's some short notes in and . I agree that the page isn't great as it is. It is a work in progress and should probably be more clearly advertised as such. And it would be good to explain it a bit more - the intro text at the moment isn't entirely in line with the actual content.
Joost schouppe (talk) 14:23, 29 January 2020 (UTC)
I am not disallowing you to say anything here. And i appreciate that you seem to be acknowledging that my observations are factually correct to a certain extent at least. But i strongly disagree with your characterization of things as product of a phenomenon and state of affairs - all of these things - whether it is the design and the goals of external resources we discuss here or the content of a wiki page - are a product of the decisions of people. These people have a choice and are responsible for the effects their choices have.
I still don't have a clear picture of the purpose of this page from the links you provided. My hypothesis would be that the page is meant to document and communicate the agenda and goals of the LCWG how local communities should be built rather than an open collection of communication methods actually used by mappers in building their communities (which is what Contact channels and many of the pages referenced in there are trying to do). If that is the case it would be helpful to mention this aim prominently on the page - because otherwise it could be highly confusing for visitors who might - like i did - mistake it for the latter. --Imagico (talk) 15:13, 29 January 2020 (UTC)
"how local communities should be built" - in OSM the difference between should, could and must often gets overinterpreted. SO just for clarity: in this case it's definitely not "should" but rather (in my interpretation) "these are tools that could be useful or begin to work in a direction that might be useful to local community builders". I agree it's important to contextualize a bit more, and make it clear that it's not necessarily an endorsement - it might even be "what we need could be inspired by X, but has to be seriously retought". I'll see what the rest of the group thinks about this. Joost schouppe (talk) 09:42, 17 February 2020 (UTC)
My argument does not depend on the differences between should, could and must but is based on the difference between describing what is as balanced as possible on the one hand and describing what ought to or could be from the subjective perspective of some individual or group. If you decide to do the latter you are not only making what you write less meaningful, you are also making a fairly massive political statement - especially if as i mentioned you do not make your readers aware of this aim.
In other words: You should be aware that when creating a page like this you are less communicating about the stuff you write about but communicating about yourselves and about how you view things. --Imagico (talk) 12:09, 17 February 2020 (UTC)
imagico - "the osm-community-index which censors channels considered undesirable" - is there an alternative list of communication channels that would be more useful? Also, note that was done by by person outside us community (me). I would not consider this rejection as a fatal issue, is there case of community getting rejected after they wanted to include their cown ommunication channel? Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 18:51, 17 February 2020 (UTC)
I don't think there is a similar other project attempting to document communication channels in a centralized database. There is a lot of such information distributed across the wiki of course. There is also - which aggregates information on use of Template:User_group on the wiki.
Regarding the questionable nature of the osm-community-index - the specific issues i mentioned are just examples to illustrate the problem. The refusal to add an existing communication channel (talk-us mailinglist which you can subscribe to, which has more than zero subscribers and mails sent to the list are delivered to subscribers) to the index because the powers that be would prefer an alternate version of this reality where said mailing list did not exist is just the the most ostentatious example. The core problem is the presence of a subjective desirability rating in said database which is prominently used by iD (and the OSMF by featuring that on endorses that) - which is being used to actively push proprietary channels like facebook and to present those to new mappers as the most important platforms of communication in the OSM community in fairly blatant misrepresentation of reality. That is despicable and inexcusable IMO and i don't have the moral flexibility to just overlook that because of the usefulness. It would of course be possible to create a community fork of the osm-community-index which removes the subjective rating of channels and adds objective characterizations instead indicating the nature of the channel (like existence of an open access and linkable communication archive, proprietary/open nature of the platform, availability of clients on various computer platforms, number of subscribers etc.) in a non-subjective form.
--Imagico (talk) 19:39, 17 February 2020 (UTC)


There's a mention of welcoming new users, so maybe this is useful: in the Italian community, for a while has been used to see who has registered/contributed for the first time in the last day, so that they can be sent a manual welcome on I'm not sure if anyone is still actively doing it though. Nemo (talk) 17:33, 17 April 2020 (UTC)