Creating a volunteer agreement

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davidweld...@gmail.com

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May 30, 2014, 1:11:02 PM5/30/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
One of Mozilla's goals for this year is to increase the number of active contributors by 10x. That means that many new people will be joining the community and we want to make sure they have a positive experience.

A few teams have contributor agreements that provide details about what it means to volunteer in that specific area, but there's never been information that covers contributors in general.

To help new contributors understand more about what they're getting involved with, we've drafted a new volunteer agreement. I wanted to share the text of that and talk about how we would make this available.

First though, I'd like to be clear about a couple of points:

* This is not intended to be a document that people will sign.

* This is not something that applies to existing contributors, just to new people who are joining the community.

After sharing the text of this here, on Planet and at an upcoming Monday project call, we'd like to add this text as a new page on http://www.mozilla.org.

We would then link to that from the Get Involved page (mozilla.org/contribute), the entry point for most new contributors. We would add this to the existing opt-in on the form that references Mozilla's Privacy Policy.

Please take a look at the text below and share your thoughts on that and on how we would make this available to new contributors.

Thanks,
David

-----------------

DRAFT Volunteer Agreement

Welcome to Mozilla! We're pleased that you will be working with us to volunteer your expertise, knowledge, and skills to our Project.

Before we begin, there are some basic terms you should be aware of and agree to. The following is an agreement between you and Mozilla that describes your volunteer work with the Project:

1. You or Mozilla may end this Agreement at any time for any reason on immediate notice. If you wish to end the Agreement, simply email a Mozilla staff member to let us know.

2. As a volunteer for our Project, you will be working with Mozilla staff, employees and other volunteers.

3. We have policies at Mozilla to protect the Project and you. While working with us, we want you to be creative and help us to grow the Project, while observing the following rules:

a. As a volunteer, you cannot bind Mozilla to any agreements or sign any agreements on behalf of Mozilla, but you can introduce Mozilla to different ideas, processes and ways of doing things;

b. You are not an employee or contractor of Mozilla and should not represent yourself as such;

c. You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or individual;

d. You agree to behave in a professional and respectable manner when acting as a Mozilla volunteer. Mozilla's Participation Guidelines can be found at http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/about/governance/policies/participation/;

e. It's definitely okay to talk about your contributions to Mozilla, but you should not use Mozilla's logo or trademarks without Mozilla's prior written consent. Mozilla's trademark policy can be found at https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/trademarks/policy/; and

f. This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or give this to any other person or group.

g. If you violate any of these rules, Mozilla has the right to end this agreement and your volunteer activities.

David Ascher

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May 30, 2014, 1:23:14 PM5/30/14
to davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Hi David — I’m quite supportive of the general goal of clarifying the social contract that we have with each other (assuming a bit that that’s part of the motivation here).

This document reads like a legal document, not a social contract. Let’s find a way to tweak the language, the framing, etc. so that it’s not as corporate sounding. When reading it I feel like i’m working through a terms of use document, not being welcomed and understanding how I’ll work with this new and inspiring community.

For example, it feels very weird to have a non-signed agreement, and to put the onus on the volunteer to let us know that they want to end the agreement. In reality volunteers just stop showing up.

I would also suggest that an important part of the social contract between Mozilla and volunteers is to be explicit about how the organization will treat volunteers, how staff will treat volunteers, and how existing volunteers will treat new volunteers. That to me feels like at least as important as telling people that they can’t misrepresent themselves.

I’d also like to suggest that we have a more explicit set of goals for this document — what need is it responding to, how do we know it’s “doing its job”, etc.

—david

Brian Smith

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May 30, 2014, 1:25:35 PM5/30/14
to davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
On Fri, May 30, 2014 at 10:11 AM, <davidweld...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Welcome to Mozilla!


Here, you are implying that "Mozilla" refers to the entire Mozilla project.


> Before we begin, there are some basic terms you should be aware of and
> agree to. The following is an agreement between you and Mozilla that
> describes your volunteer work with the Project:
>

Does "Mozilla" still refer to the entire project here, or MoFo or MoCo?


> 1. You or Mozilla may end this Agreement at any time for any reason on
> immediate notice. If you wish to end the Agreement, simply email a Mozilla
> staff member to let us know.
>

Why only MoFo/MoCo staff?


> 2. As a volunteer for our Project, you will be working with Mozilla staff,
> employees and other volunteers.
>

My understanding is that Mozilla is comprised of individuals, and Mozilla
Corp. pays a lot of them. However, in the context of this agreement, why
does it make sense to treat and/or reference Mozilla staff/employees
differently than other contributors?


> a. As a volunteer, you cannot bind Mozilla to any agreements or sign any
> agreements on behalf of Mozilla, but you can introduce Mozilla to different
> ideas, processes and ways of doing things;
>

Does "Mozilla" refer to MoCo, MoFo, or the entire project? As far as I
understand things, a non-MoCo/MoFo-employee volunteer that has earned
sufficient authority would be able to represent the Mozilla project the
same way that any MoCo/MoFo employee could.


> b. You are not an employee or contractor of Mozilla and should not
> represent yourself as such;
>

Again, it isn't clear what you are referring to by "Mozilla."


> c. You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your
> locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or individual;
>

Why worry about whether people are violating their own local laws? That's
there own business.

"The rights of any group or individual" are vague. Please enumerate the
rights you are concerned with.


> e. It's definitely okay to talk about your contributions to Mozilla, but
> you should not use Mozilla's logo or trademarks without Mozilla's prior
> written consent. Mozilla's trademark policy can be found at
> https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/trademarks/policy/; and
>

The Mozilla trademark policy that you link to seems to be much more lenient
than "you should not use Mozilla's logo or trademarks without Mozilla's
prior written consent" and that statement is misleading. I suggest you just
say "You should comply with the trademark policy at
https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/trademarks/policy/."
<https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/trademarks/policy/>

>
> f. This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or give
> this to any other person or group.
>
> g. If you violate any of these rules, Mozilla has the right to end this
> agreement and your volunteer activities.
>

Who is "Mozilla" here? And, what would it mean for Mozilla to end
somebody's volunteer activities, considering everything we do is open?

Cheers,
Brian

Brian Smith

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May 30, 2014, 1:28:41 PM5/30/14
to davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
On Fri, May 30, 2014 at 10:25 AM, Brian Smith <br...@briansmith.org> wrote:

> Why worry about whether people are violating their own local laws? That's
> there own business.
>

:sigh: s/there/their/.

Stormy Peters

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May 30, 2014, 1:47:00 PM5/30/14
to David Ascher, davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
+1 to working on the language. It has a lot of "immediate notice, rules,
not, should not, cannot, may not, violate".

Stormy


On Fri, May 30, 2014 at 11:23 AM, David Ascher <d...@mozillafoundation.org>
wrote:
> _______________________________________________
> governance mailing list
> gover...@lists.mozilla.org
> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/governance
>

Alina Mierlus

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May 30, 2014, 1:49:35 PM5/30/14
to David Ascher, davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Hi David,

I subscribe what David Ascher says. If I put myself in the shoes of a new
potential contributor, my reaction would be: ok, I don't need it, thanks!
I must say that I'm a bit concerned about some tactics Mozilla has been
adopting in terms of community building activities.

I too, believe that the project needs to attract more people in order to
have greater impact in various regions of the globe. Mozilla builds
technology that is booth "free as in free speech" and deploy(able). There
are many opportunities around distributed services or FirefoxOS
applications ecosystem. If you received new contributors with such
agreements ("our project", "you don't have the right to", "you cannot do
this!"), I wonder that there would be an atmosphere of collaboration,
consensus and trust.

Let's try to imagine Mozilla more as an umbrella for various people / orgs.
with shared understanding, collaborating and building consensus - not
dividing it into the "we" and "them". It'd probably be harder to do it
(much harder than "recruiting and making them obey rules"), but probably
worth it for the long run.

This doesn't mean that there shouldn't be guidelines, workshops on how
people should treat each other when participating in Mozilla Project. I
welcome documents such as the community participation guideline for example.

-Alina
--
Alina Mierlus
@alina_mierlus

William Duyck

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May 30, 2014, 2:47:22 PM5/30/14
to Alina Mierlus, davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org, David Ascher
I too think we should run another pass over this and make it seem much less legally.

Right now it makes me feel a special kind of uncomfortable. I do think that something like this could have a lot of value however. Just needs to be framed properly, and not be full of legalise.

Additionally it might be worth trying to integrate a bunch of this w/ the pre-existing community guidelines and resurfacing that.

Just my £0.02

// FuzzyFox


www.webmaker.org William Duyck
Webmaker Mentor
Mozilla Foundation

Email: wdu...@mozillafoundation.org
Twitter: @FuzzyFox0

Sheeri Cabral

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May 30, 2014, 3:00:18 PM5/30/14
to davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
I agree with what others have said, and I'll throw in an alternative idea.

Here's some changes I made, taking out redundancies (e.g. behaving appropriately is covered under the participation guidelines), and putting the "you can end your participation" part at the end. Because that's not the first thing we should tell a new person, in my opinion.

--------------

DRAFT Volunteer Agreement

Welcome to Mozilla! We're pleased that you will be working with us to volunteer your expertise, knowledge, and skills to our Project. We are happy to have you along as a Mozillian.

Before we begin, you might want to be aware of the following:

1. Mozillians behave in a professional and respectable manner when participating in the Project. Mozilla's Participation Guidelines can be found at http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/about/governance/policies/participation/

2. Legally, you are not an employee or contractor of Mozilla and should not represent yourself as such. As a volunteer, you cannot bind Mozilla to any agreements or sign any agreements on behalf of Mozilla.

3. We love it when people talk about their contributions to Mozilla! However, Mozilla does own some trademarks, so please do not use logos or trademarks inappropriately. Mozilla's trademark policy can be found at https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/trademarks/policy/

4. You or Mozilla may end your participation at any time for any reason on immediate notice. If you wish to end your participation, simply let us know.

We are excited to have you on board and hear your creative ideas!


--------------

----- Original Message -----
From: davidweld...@gmail.com
To: mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Sent: Friday, May 30, 2014 1:11:02 PM
Subject: Creating a volunteer agreement

One of Mozilla's goals for this year is to increase the number of active contributors by 10x. That means that many new people will be joining the community and we want to make sure they have a positive experience.

A few teams have contributor agreements that provide details about what it means to volunteer in that specific area, but there's never been information that covers contributors in general.

To help new contributors understand more about what they're getting involved with, we've drafted a new volunteer agreement. I wanted to share the text of that and talk about how we would make this available.

First though, I'd like to be clear about a couple of points:

* This is not intended to be a document that people will sign.

* This is not something that applies to existing contributors, just to new people who are joining the community.

After sharing the text of this here, on Planet and at an upcoming Monday project call, we'd like to add this text as a new page on http://www.mozilla.org.

We would then link to that from the Get Involved page (mozilla.org/contribute), the entry point for most new contributors. We would add this to the existing opt-in on the form that references Mozilla's Privacy Policy.

Please take a look at the text below and share your thoughts on that and on how we would make this available to new contributors.

Thanks,
David

-----------------

DRAFT Volunteer Agreement

Welcome to Mozilla! We're pleased that you will be working with us to volunteer your expertise, knowledge, and skills to our Project.

Before we begin, there are some basic terms you should be aware of and agree to. The following is an agreement between you and Mozilla that describes your volunteer work with the Project:

1. You or Mozilla may end this Agreement at any time for any reason on immediate notice. If you wish to end the Agreement, simply email a Mozilla staff member to let us know.

2. As a volunteer for our Project, you will be working with Mozilla staff, employees and other volunteers.

3. We have policies at Mozilla to protect the Project and you. While working with us, we want you to be creative and help us to grow the Project, while observing the following rules:

a. As a volunteer, you cannot bind Mozilla to any agreements or sign any agreements on behalf of Mozilla, but you can introduce Mozilla to different ideas, processes and ways of doing things;

b. You are not an employee or contractor of Mozilla and should not represent yourself as such;

c. You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or individual;

d. You agree to behave in a professional and respectable manner when acting as a Mozilla volunteer. Mozilla's Participation Guidelines can be found at http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/about/governance/policies/participation/;

e. It's definitely okay to talk about your contributions to Mozilla, but you should not use Mozilla's logo or trademarks without Mozilla's prior written consent. Mozilla's trademark policy can be found at https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/trademarks/policy/; and

f. This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or give this to any other person or group.

g. If you violate any of these rules, Mozilla has the right to end this agreement and your volunteer activities.

Ben Moskowitz

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May 30, 2014, 3:06:58 PM5/30/14
to Sheeri Cabral, davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Sheeri, thanks for the re-worked draft.

I wonder if we can’t add some sense of “citizenship", too—that we are all part of a big movement, have a responsibility to each other and our values, and any rules are here to help sustain the movement and to keep it strong. That sort of acknowledgement.

The participation guidelines and Manifesto have that feeling, would help to make this agreement more Mozilla-ish.

Cheers!
Ben

Emma Irwin

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May 30, 2014, 3:21:43 PM5/30/14
to Sheeri Cabral, davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
This feels exclusionary of casual contributors, of which there are many.

I'm assuming they wouldn't even know who to contact when ending
contribution - does that mean I can't come back? I also prefer this
wording which uses the term 'participation' rather than 'work'.

The contributor has turned up because, more than likely they feel connected
to a specific piece of the project - they're excited. Onboarding should
feel less like you're starting a new job, more like opportunity to make a
difference and contribute. +1 to citizenship.

I would also warn that legalize in such a contract will concern those with
work visas. Original version made me feel uncomfortable as well.
--
Emma Irwin
@sunnydeveloper
Mozilla Reps Council Member

Majken Connor

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May 30, 2014, 3:43:56 PM5/30/14
to Emma Irwin, David Boswell, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org, Sheeri Cabral
I'm wondering if we're misunderstanding the purpose of this agreement, or
maybe people are approaching it from different angles?

It seems worded to me to address the need to have a formal agreement when
we want to give certain responsibilities to volunteer contributors. We're
missing something generic like this, and this is partly why it's much
easier to give Reps responsibilities and include them without being able to
give the same trust and responsibility to other volunteers.

Especially the part where you need to notify or get notified that you're no
longer contributing, that seems incredibly overkill if this is a general
understanding between Mozilla and volunteers, but it makes perfect sense if
it's in the context that we've just given a volunteer a responsibility or
leadership role.

Justin Dolske

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May 30, 2014, 5:01:49 PM5/30/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
On 5/30/14, 10:11 AM, davidweld...@gmail.com wrote:
> One of Mozilla's goals for this year is to increase the number of
> active contributors by 10x. That means that many new people will be
> joining the community and we want to make sure they have a positive
> experience.
>
> A few teams have contributor agreements that provide details about
> what it means to volunteer in that specific area, but there's never
> been information that covers contributors in general.
>
> To help new contributors understand more about what they're getting
> involved with, we've drafted a new volunteer agreement. I wanted to
> share the text of that and talk about how we would make this
> available.

What's the goal of this "agreement"? That is, what problem is it
addressing or even just general purpose?

I think it would help to first clarify that. The words above are kind of
vague ("positive experience ... what it means ... understand what
they're getting involved with"). It almost sounds like a welcome guide
or context-setting thing at first, but the actual text then reads like
it's more about indemnifying Mozilla. As other have noted, the wording
really needs to be less "corporate", but with smooth and casual phrasing
it would still seem weird.

Justin

Henrik Mitsch

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May 30, 2014, 5:34:26 PM5/30/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Hi all,

I agree with most of the concerns voiced in this thread.

In the initial email David wrote:
> To help new contributors understand more about what they're getting involved with, we've drafted a new volunteer agreement.

If this is the real reason for the agreement, we should emphasize positive aspects. Mozilla is a fun place to be at! Let's search for a concise, positive way to describe that.

I am wondering if there are also other reasons for the agreement. Do we want or need to cover legal aspects?

If we agree on the "why" (i.e. reason for the agreement) I am sure we will find a good way of conveying that message in a volunteer agreement.

Regards,
Henrik

--
Henrik Mitsch
>>> One of Mozilla's goals for this year is to increase the number of active
>>> contributors by 10x. That means that many new people will be joining the
>>> community and we want to make sure they have a positive experience.
>>>
>>> A few teams have contributor agreements that provide details about what
>> it
>>> means to volunteer in that specific area, but there's never been
>>> information that covers contributors in general.
>>>
>>> To help new contributors understand more about what they're getting
>>> involved with, we've drafted a new volunteer agreement. I wanted to share
>>> the text of that and talk about how we would make this available.
>>>

Alina Mierlus

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May 30, 2014, 6:35:26 PM5/30/14
to Henrik Mitsch, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
+1 Henrik. Answering 'why' is very important (to understand the reasons for
this kind of agreements).

-Alina
Alina Mierlus
@alina_mierlus

Gervase Markham

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Jun 2, 2014, 4:42:22 AM6/2/14
to Justin Dolske
On 30/05/14 22:01, Justin Dolske wrote:
> What's the goal of this "agreement"? That is, what problem is it
> addressing or even just general purpose?

I think this is key. There are several possible purposes it could have:

1) legal purpose. (But this has been disclaimed as the purpose, and it's
not a document which requires a signature.)

2) expectation-setting/social-contract purpose. (But other communities
have social contracts which are stated as a set of encouraged
behaviours, rather than in the form this document puts them.)

3) inclusiveness purpose. (To make people feel part of something; but if
that's it, then the language needs a lot of change, as others have noted.)

4) ...? Are there other options?

The risks here are the risk of chasing new contributors away by seeming
too formal and of putting up barriers. So I think we should only do this
if we have a clearly-defined purpose for it and we then conclude it will
do more good than harm.

Gerv

Benjamin Kerensa

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Jun 2, 2014, 6:34:50 AM6/2/14
to davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
> First though, I'd like to be clear about a couple of points:
>
> * This is not intended to be a document that people will sign.
>

If it is not signed then it is not really an agreement

> * This is not something that applies to existing contributors, just to new people who are joining the community.
>

Why would we subject new contributors to a social contract or
agreement that existing contributors do not have to abide by?


> Welcome to Mozilla! We're pleased that you will be working with us to volunteer your expertise, knowledge, and skills to our Project.
>
> Before we begin, there are some basic terms you should be aware of and agree to. The following is an agreement between you and Mozilla that describes your volunteer work with the Project:
>
> 1. You or Mozilla may end this Agreement at any time for any reason on immediate notice. If you wish to end the Agreement, simply email a Mozilla staff member to let us know.
>

Which staff member? Are all staff members going to be trained how to
accept and route such emails?

> e. It's definitely okay to talk about your contributions to Mozilla, but you should not use Mozilla's logo or trademarks without Mozilla's prior written consent. Mozilla's trademark policy can be found at https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/trademarks/policy/; and
>

This seems like it needs to be changed considering there are a number
of permissible uses of Mozilla's logos and trademarks that do not
require written permission.

My other thoughts are that overall this seems a bit overbearing and I
cannot think of another open source project/community that has any
agreements like this. Sure there are Contributor License Agreements
and Code of Conduct's both of which we have but nothing like this...
I'm just wondering what were hoping to achieve with this document?

Mike Hoye

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Jun 2, 2014, 10:54:50 AM6/2/14
to gover...@lists.mozilla.org
On 2014-06-02, 4:42 AM, Gervase Markham wrote:
> On 30/05/14 22:01, Justin Dolske wrote:
>> What's the goal of this "agreement"? That is, what problem is it
>> addressing or even just general purpose?
> I think this is key. There are several possible purposes it could have:
>
> 1) legal purpose. (But this has been disclaimed as the purpose, and it's
> not a document which requires a signature.)
>
> 2) expectation-setting/social-contract purpose. (But other communities
> have social contracts which are stated as a set of encouraged
> behaviours, rather than in the form this document puts them.)
>
> 3) inclusiveness purpose. (To make people feel part of something; but if
> that's it, then the language needs a lot of change, as others have noted.)
>
> 4) ...? Are there other options?

While I share some of the concerns already aired about this agreement, I
think that it would be valuable to dig into the seam between options two
and three, there. It would be great to have something that discusses
what our principles mean when they're practiced day to day by our
community. A doc that not only speaks the community's expectations and
standards of inclusiveness, but that describes what a successful
relationship looks like, discusses what that can grow in to, and ties
these expectations, standards and practices back to the Manifesto in
some meaningful way could be a very powerful tool for engagement and a
valuable expression of our culture.

The general thrust of it, though, would have to be much less about what
you can and can't do, and a lot more about what you can participate in,
what you could become, and why that work and growth matters.

Even more generally: we really need to stop playing defense on comms here.

The message about community membership shouldn't be a careful list of
what you can't do or we'll ask you not to, it should be "this is how
we're going to change the world, this is why it matters and this is how
you can be a part of it. When we hit a setback on something like EME we
should be trumpeting that the only reason this happens is because we're
not the biggest dog in that fight, and if you think we should be then
use Firefox and tell your friends why they should use Firefox. Every
time we write a FAQ about Directory Tiles or a press release that
doesn't end with a link to the Manifesto and a call to the barricades
we're missing an opportunity, and other people have tried to make these
points for us - these are the stakes, this is the world we want, this is
why it matters and this is why your help matters - but we haven't. And
we need to turn that around, and soon.

- mhoye



davidweld...@gmail.com

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Jun 5, 2014, 3:02:44 PM6/5/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Thanks to everyone for the feedback and suggested edits.

To provide more clarity on the goal of this document, my goal is to allow us to scale the community by making implicit information explicit. The Get Involved page is one good spot to communicate with new contributors and we should look at others (perhaps we invite people to an onboarding portal after they've earned their first badge?)

The need for us to be clear about norms, rules, expectations, etc. keeps going up as the size of the community goes up. I feel strongly that there are limits to growth if we rely only on informal methods to share tacit information.

I've been reaching out to people involved with other large volunteer communities to learn more about best practices and it has been fascinating. For instance, I've made friends with someone at the Red Cross and she's amazed at how far we've managed to come without documenting and providing some basic information to new community members.

For comparison, the Red Cross has millions of volunteers and they've found it useful to document many aspects of what it means to be involved in Red Cross activites. You can see an example of a 50-page handbook for new volunteers from a Red Cross chapter in Connecticut at:

http://www.redcross.org/images/MEDIA_CustomProductCatalog/m20164344_volunteer_handbook_1_30_13_rev__2013_08_14_sm.pdf

I'm not suggesting we go to that length, but there are things that new contributors would find useful. Part of that information includes the fact that there are legal entities in the Mozilla community that new contributors will be interacting with and there are rules that those organizations need to follow.

For next steps, I do agree that we should take a look again at the tone and make it more welcoming and also change language that makes this seem like it is a signed document. I'll post an updated version of this soon.

Thanks,
David

Rubén Martín

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Jun 6, 2014, 5:51:01 AM6/6/14
to David Boswell, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Hi,

So as I understand David's explanation, this is not an "agreement", it's a
summary of all the structure, rules and community agreements we have, so
new people is aware of all the information in one place.

Regards.
--
Rubén Martín (Nukeador)
Mozilla Reps Mentor
http://mozilla-hispano.org
http://twitter.com/mozilla_hispano
http://facebook.com/mozillahispano

Robert Kaiser

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Jun 6, 2014, 1:10:33 PM6/6/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Rubén Martín schrieb:
> So as I understand David's explanation, this is not an "agreement", it's a
> summary of all the structure, rules and community agreements we have, so
> new people is aware of all the information in one place.

Then we probably should name and phrase it more that way. ;-)

KaiRo


Majken Connor

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Jun 6, 2014, 1:20:12 PM6/6/14
to Robert Kaiser, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
I just want to mention again (did it go through the first time?) that many
teams besides Reps need a formal agreement to allow volunteers to take on
responsibilities and leadership and to allow them to be in on sensitive
information. This agreement as it is written seems like it would be
intended for that purpose. Because it seems so far off from the purpose
stated when it was shared, it seems to make sense to keep this agreement
and tweak it for the purpose it suits.

It seems like it would be better to take the community guidelines as a
starting point for a more general "welcome, this is how we do things here"
(and isn't that what the guidelines are anyway? Would we really need a new
document or just to start putting the guidelines in front of people?)


On Fri, Jun 6, 2014 at 1:10 PM, Robert Kaiser <ka...@kairo.at> wrote:

> Rubén Martín schrieb:
>
> So as I understand David's explanation, this is not an "agreement", it's a
>> summary of all the structure, rules and community agreements we have, so
>> new people is aware of all the information in one place.
>>
>
> Then we probably should name and phrase it more that way. ;-)
>
> KaiRo
>
>
>

Cédric Corazza

unread,
Jun 6, 2014, 6:18:30 PM6/6/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Le 06/06/2014 19:20, Majken Connor a écrit :
> I just want to mention again (did it go through the first time?) that many
> teams besides Reps need a formal agreement to allow volunteers to take on
> responsibilities and leadership and to allow them to be in on sensitive
> information. This agreement as it is written seems like it would be
> intended for that purpose. Because it seems so far off from the purpose
> stated when it was shared, it seems to make sense to keep this agreement
> and tweak it for the purpose it suits.

I'm following this thread since the beginning and I'm confused:
reading David's announcement, the initial goal is to decuple the number
of contributors. Now, it seems that other goals are included.

I understand that now that the community is growing, it is difficult for
MoCo/MoFo employees to settle a trusted relationship with every new
comer: this takes time and with the growing numbers of contributors,
building such trusted relationship with each contributor is not possible.

Back in the days, in the early soaring of Firefox, many contributors
gave interviews, made technical printed book reviews and so without
signing or reading any guideline or code of conduct or whatever: it was
always clear and obvious that we were not talking or acting on behalf
Mozilla but as Mozilla contributor. Well, it is common sense, we were
not employees.

In my understanding, the "Welcome contributing to Mozilla" document
would look like:
What is Mozilla. -> Short history, Manifesto…
What do we do? -> Events, contribution to other FOSS projects, …
Where can you help? -> list of projects needing help
I'm stuck, where can I get help? -> websites, newsgroups, individuals, …

If needed, it can be stated that contributing to Mozilla does not give
the right to speak *on behalf* Mozilla, but obviously contributors have
their freedom of speech as long as they speak for themselves.

Would this document decuple the number of contributors, I don't know,
but at least, this would avoid a lots of questions/emails/posts to
employees/contributors.

Concerning sensitive information or NDA, this is a one to one agreement.
Should this be signed or not, it is up to legals to decide, but in my
opinion, this should not be in the "welcoming document".

> It seems like it would be better to take the community guidelines as a
> starting point for a more general "welcome, this is how we do things here"
> (and isn't that what the guidelines are anyway? Would we really need a new
> document or just to start putting the guidelines in front of people?)

Voilà!

Regards

Cédric

davidweld...@gmail.com

unread,
Jun 9, 2014, 7:23:24 PM6/9/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Thanks again for the feedback and suggestions. Below is an updated version of this text that addresses the issues raised in this thread. The main things to call out are:

* The introduction is more clear that the goal of the document is to help new volunteers with their experience at Mozilla.

* The tone is more welcoming and has less legalese in it.

* The name of document hasn't been changed. As I said originally, this is not intended to be a document that people sign, although it is still an agreement. The proposal is to ask people to opt-in to this when coming in through the Get Involved page, just like we ask potential volunteers today to opt-in to our Privacy Policy.

If there are any additional thoughts, comments or questions, feel free to respond.

Thanks,
David

---------------------

DRAFT Volunteer Agreement

Welcome to Mozilla! We're excited that you will be working with us to advance our mission of promoting openness, innovation & opportunity on the Web [link to mission page]. In order for us to achieve our mission, we need people like you from around the world who are passionate about the Web to volunteer their expertise, knowledge, and skills.

We want to make sure you have a positive experience while volunteering, so this information is here to give you some clarity on norms, rules and expectations.

There are a lot of things happening at Mozilla and it can feel a bit overwhelming at times (new employees talk about the Mozilla firehose of information they encounter when they first start). Because it can be difficult to navigate all of that information right away, we hope that providing this information here will be useful to you.

Please take some time to read through this and get familiar with some basic terms and policies you should be aware of and agree to. We have these policies at Mozilla to protect the Project and you. The following is an agreement between you and Mozilla that describes your volunteer work with the Project.

* As a volunteer for our Project, you will be working with Mozilla staff, employees and other volunteers;

* As a volunteer, you will not receive any payment from Mozilla;

* As a volunteer, you cannot bind Mozilla to any agreements or sign any agreements on behalf of Mozilla, but you can introduce Mozilla to different ideas, processes and ways of doing things;

* You are not an employee or contractor of Mozilla and should not represent yourself as such;

* You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or individual;

* You agree to behave in a professional and respectable manner when acting as a Mozilla volunteer. See our Participation Guidelines [link] for more information;

* It's definitely okay to talk about your contributions to Mozilla, but before you use Mozilla's logo or trademarks, please read through our trademark policy [link];

* This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or give this to any other person or group;

* If you violate any of these rules, Mozilla has the right to end this agreement and your volunteer activities.

Axel Hecht

unread,
Jun 10, 2014, 7:32:16 AM6/10/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
On 6/10/14 1:23 AM, davidweld...@gmail.com wrote:
> Thanks again for the feedback and suggestions. Below is an updated version of this text that addresses the issues raised in this thread. The main things to call out are:
>
> * The introduction is more clear that the goal of the document is to help new volunteers with their experience at Mozilla.
>
> * The tone is more welcoming and has less legalese in it.
>
> * The name of document hasn't been changed. As I said originally, this is not intended to be a document that people sign, although it is still an agreement. The proposal is to ask people to opt-in to this when coming in through the Get Involved page, just like we ask potential volunteers today to opt-in to our Privacy Policy.
>
> If there are any additional thoughts, comments or questions, feel free to respond.
>
> Thanks,
> David
>
> ---------------------
>
> DRAFT Volunteer Agreement
>
> Welcome to Mozilla! We're excited that you will be working with us to advance our mission of promoting openness, innovation & opportunity on the Web [link to mission page]. In order for us to achieve our mission, we need people like you from around the world who are passionate about the Web to volunteer their expertise, knowledge, and skills.
>
> We want to make sure you have a positive experience while volunteering, so this information is here to give you some clarity on norms, rules and expectations.
>
> There are a lot of things happening at Mozilla and it can feel a bit overwhelming at times (new employees talk about the Mozilla firehose of information they encounter when they first start). Because it can be difficult to navigate all of that information right away, we hope that providing this information here will be useful to you.
>
> Please take some time to read through this and get familiar with some basic terms and policies you should be aware of and agree to. We have these policies at Mozilla to protect the Project and you. The following is an agreement between you and Mozilla that describes your volunteer work with the Project.
>
> * As a volunteer for our Project, you will be working with Mozilla staff, employees and other volunteers;
>
> * As a volunteer, you will not receive any payment from Mozilla;
I think this sentence is confusing, in the light of what we do with the
reps program, shipping phones to contributors (for which we may
reimburse tax, etc).
> * As a volunteer, you cannot bind Mozilla to any agreements or sign any agreements on behalf of Mozilla, but you can introduce Mozilla to different ideas, processes and ways of doing things;
>
> * You are not an employee or contractor of Mozilla and should not represent yourself as such;
>
> * You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or individual;
>
> * You agree to behave in a professional and respectable manner when acting as a Mozilla volunteer. See our Participation Guidelines [link] for more information;
"professional" and "respectable" vary widely depending on culture, and
the participation guidelines actually protect us from that. I'd rephrase
that as
* You have read and agreed with the Community Participation Guidelines.
They describe how you can expect to be treated within Mozilla, and how
Mozilla expects you to treat others.
>
> * It's definitely okay to talk about your contributions to Mozilla, but before you use Mozilla's logo or trademarks, please read through our trademark policy [link];
>
> * This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or give this to any other person or group;
>
> * If you violate any of these rules, Mozilla has the right to end this agreement and your volunteer activities.
The last one here still doesn't say anything. I think we should refer
the conflict resolution piece to the individual documents referenced here.

Axel

Pascal Chevrel

unread,
Jun 10, 2014, 8:04:47 AM6/10/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Le 10/06/2014 01:23, davidweld...@gmail.com a ï¿œcrit :

> If there are any additional thoughts, comments or questions, feel
> free to respond.
>
> Thanks, David
>
> ---------------
>
> * You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your
> locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or
> individual;
>

Hi,

This one makes me very unconfortable, why would Mozilla want to have any
sort of control on people's lifes outside of their contribution to the
Mozilla project? What about people living in non-democratic countries?
Can a journalist in Syria participate in Mozilla even though his
activities are illegal in his country? Can gay people in countries were
homosexuality is a crime participe in Mozilla? IMO, we shouldn't import
non Mozilla issues into the Mozilla project or we will end up into
having to define what is morally wrong or right.

Also, a 'locale' is a technical term in computing designing a
combination of language and geography used to define the best settings
for a user in the software he uses, not a government or a country.


Pascal

Majken Connor

unread,
Jun 10, 2014, 12:30:03 PM6/10/14
to Pascal Chevrel, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
I think this is better.

Pascal - I have a feeling this is meant to be as part of your contributions
to Mozilla. So you can't rob a bank and donate the money to Mozilla, or
host an event that would be considered trespassing. The wording can be
clearer, but maybe it is the formatting in email, the line before the
bullet is "The following is an agreement between you and Mozilla that
describes your volunteer work with the Project."

I am not sure if there is a better word than locale, since there are
different levels of government that can have laws, city, state, prefecture,
province, township... I got the meaning but then I am a current Mozilla
contributor and know what locale means. We might want to test this with
non-Mozillians to see if the meaning still comes across.


On Tue, Jun 10, 2014 at 8:04 AM, Pascal Chevrel <pascal....@free.fr>
wrote:

> Le 10/06/2014 01:23, davidweld...@gmail.com a écrit :
>
> If there are any additional thoughts, comments or questions, feel
>> free to respond.
>>
>> Thanks, David
>>
>> ---------------
>>
>> * You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your
>> locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or
>> individual;
>>
>>
> Hi,
>
> This one makes me very unconfortable, why would Mozilla want to have any
> sort of control on people's lifes outside of their contribution to the
> Mozilla project? What about people living in non-democratic countries? Can
> a journalist in Syria participate in Mozilla even though his activities are
> illegal in his country? Can gay people in countries were homosexuality is a
> crime participe in Mozilla? IMO, we shouldn't import non Mozilla issues
> into the Mozilla project or we will end up into having to define what is
> morally wrong or right.
>
> Also, a 'locale' is a technical term in computing designing a combination
> of language and geography used to define the best settings for a user in
> the software he uses, not a government or a country.
>
>
> Pascal
>

Larissa Shapiro

unread,
Jun 10, 2014, 12:39:44 PM6/10/14
to Majken Connor, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org, Pascal Chevrel
Yes, the legal issues are… do not break local laws in the context of your work for Mozilla. We can’t hold people to anything else they do, really!

----------------------------
Larissa Shapiro
Contributor Development, Community Building Team - Mozilla
Join Us | http://www.mozilla.org/contribute/

On Jun 10, 2014, at 9:30 AM, Majken Connor <maj...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I think this is better.
>
> Pascal - I have a feeling this is meant to be as part of your contributions
> to Mozilla. So you can't rob a bank and donate the money to Mozilla, or
> host an event that would be considered trespassing. The wording can be
> clearer, but maybe it is the formatting in email, the line before the
> bullet is "The following is an agreement between you and Mozilla that
> describes your volunteer work with the Project."
>
> I am not sure if there is a better word than locale, since there are
> different levels of government that can have laws, city, state, prefecture,
> province, township... I got the meaning but then I am a current Mozilla
> contributor and know what locale means. We might want to test this with
> non-Mozillians to see if the meaning still comes across.
>
>
> On Tue, Jun 10, 2014 at 8:04 AM, Pascal Chevrel <pascal....@free.fr>
> wrote:
>
>> Le 10/06/2014 01:23, davidweld...@gmail.com a écrit :
>>
>> If there are any additional thoughts, comments or questions, feel
>>> free to respond.
>>>
>>> Thanks, David
>>>
>>> ---------------
>>>
>>> * You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your
>>> locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or
>>> individual;
>>>
>>>
>> Hi,
>>
>> This one makes me very unconfortable, why would Mozilla want to have any
>> sort of control on people's lifes outside of their contribution to the
>> Mozilla project? What about people living in non-democratic countries? Can
>> a journalist in Syria participate in Mozilla even though his activities are
>> illegal in his country? Can gay people in countries were homosexuality is a
>> crime participe in Mozilla? IMO, we shouldn't import non Mozilla issues
>> into the Mozilla project or we will end up into having to define what is
>> morally wrong or right.
>>
>> Also, a 'locale' is a technical term in computing designing a combination
>> of language and geography used to define the best settings for a user in
>> the software he uses, not a government or a country.
>>
>>
>> Pascal
>>

Pascal Chevrel

unread,
Jun 10, 2014, 12:45:58 PM6/10/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Le 10/06/2014 18:30, Majken Connor a ï¿œcrit :
> I think this is better.
>
> Pascal - I have a feeling this is meant to be as part of your contributions
> to Mozilla. So you can't rob a bank and donate the money to Mozilla, or
> host an event that would be considered trespassing. The wording can be
> clearer, but maybe it is the formatting in email, the line before the
> bullet is "The following is an agreement between you and Mozilla that
> describes your volunteer work with the Project."
>

Then it's fine, but maybe it should be reworded to be clearer because it
wasn't obvious to me that it was in the context of Mozilla contribution
only that people should follow their local laws. Maybe starting with "In
the context of your contribution to Mozilla...." It could also be a good
idea to get a professional writer like Matej to have a look at the
wording of the whole document (if that's not already the case).

Pascal

Gervase Markham

unread,
Jun 10, 2014, 12:45:59 PM6/10/14
to davidweld...@gmail.com
On 10/06/14 00:23, davidweld...@gmail.com wrote:
> * The introduction is more clear that the goal of the document is to
> help new volunteers with their experience at Mozilla.
>
> * The tone is more welcoming and has less legalese in it.

I think the "Agreement" framing is still problematic.

Other free software projects allow people to just come along and get
involved. They may have Community Participation Guidelines which explain
how people are expected to act, and that newcomers are encouraged to
read. But an "agreement" is something I have to consider whether I agree
to all of, when I'd rather just be participating. In other words, doing
it this way seems to assume from the start that someone is likely to be
a jerk, and we have to address that possibility up front. That doesn't
help build trust.

Looking through, I think there are only actually 3 things you need to
say to someone. Here's a blow-by-blow:

* As a volunteer for our Project, you will be working with Mozilla
staff, employees and other volunteers;

-- How is this useful and new information?

* As a volunteer, you will not receive any payment from Mozilla;

-- Well yes, that's what "volunteer" means in English. This seems
redundant. Have we had people start volunteering at Mozilla with a
strong expectation of being paid and then going off in a huff when they
weren't?

* As a volunteer, you cannot bind Mozilla to any agreements or sign any
agreements on behalf of Mozilla, but you can introduce Mozilla to
different ideas, processes and ways of doing things;

-- OK... but what happens if I do this anyway? Are we actually going to
sue? Have there been any cases of this actually happening?

* You are not an employee or contractor of Mozilla and should not
represent yourself as such;

-- This one is OK.

* You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your
locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or individual;

-- Others have explained why this is unnecessary or even actively wrong.

* You agree to behave in a professional and respectable manner when
acting as a Mozilla volunteer. See our Participation Guidelines [link]
for more information;

-- This is useful.

* It's definitely okay to talk about your contributions to Mozilla, but
before you use Mozilla's logo or trademarks, please read through our
trademark policy [link];

-- This is useful.

* This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or
give this to any other person or group;

-- This feels very "sign-y".

* If you violate any of these rules, Mozilla has the right to end this
agreement and your volunteer activities.

-- The key point is, we don't need to detect an "agreement violation" to
decide that someone should no longer volunteer with Mozilla, and stop
accepting their help. So enumerating all the badness in order to be able
to conclude with this is just not a helpful approach IMO.

> * The name of document hasn't been changed. As I said originally,
> this is not intended to be a document that people sign, although it
> is still an agreement. The proposal is to ask people to opt-in to
> this when coming in through the Get Involved page, just like we ask
> potential volunteers today to opt-in to our Privacy Policy.

If one has to agree to it, then it's a "signed document" in nature, even
if a signature isn't required.

Gerv

Emma Irwin

unread,
Jun 10, 2014, 2:00:26 PM6/10/14
to David Boswell, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
"As a volunteer for our Project"

'our project' seems a bit too possessive/excluding. Perhaps 'As a
volunteer for Mozilla' or 'As a volunteer for the Mozilla Project.

What I'm having trouble with, is how an 'agreement' would be perceived to
casual volunteers who step up to help 'once in a while' : helping in IRC ,
editing a Wiki, submitting single PR for a bug they found and fixed... The
Red Cross was mentioned, but I'm not sure if they have this same type of
casual and one-off volunteerism?

When I first came into the community I would have assumed this was for
another more serious 'type' of volunteer and stopped reading half way
through.




On Mon, Jun 9, 2014 at 4:23 PM, <davidweld...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Thanks again for the feedback and suggestions. Below is an updated
> version of this text that addresses the issues raised in this thread. The
> main things to call out are:
>
> * The introduction is more clear that the goal of the document is to help
> new volunteers with their experience at Mozilla.
>
> * The tone is more welcoming and has less legalese in it.
>
> * The name of document hasn't been changed. As I said originally, this is
> not intended to be a document that people sign, although it is still an
> agreement. The proposal is to ask people to opt-in to this when coming in
> through the Get Involved page, just like we ask potential volunteers today
> to opt-in to our Privacy Policy.
>
> If there are any additional thoughts, comments or questions, feel free to
> respond.
>
> Thanks,
> David
>
> ---------------------
>
> DRAFT Volunteer Agreement
>
> Welcome to Mozilla! We're excited that you will be working with us to
> advance our mission of promoting openness, innovation & opportunity on the
> Web [link to mission page]. In order for us to achieve our mission, we
> need people like you from around the world who are passionate about the Web
> to volunteer their expertise, knowledge, and skills.
>
> We want to make sure you have a positive experience while volunteering, so
> this information is here to give you some clarity on norms, rules and
> expectations.
>
> There are a lot of things happening at Mozilla and it can feel a bit
> overwhelming at times (new employees talk about the Mozilla firehose of
> information they encounter when they first start). Because it can be
> difficult to navigate all of that information right away, we hope that
> providing this information here will be useful to you.
>
> Please take some time to read through this and get familiar with some
> basic terms and policies you should be aware of and agree to. We have
> these policies at Mozilla to protect the Project and you. The following is
> an agreement between you and Mozilla that describes your volunteer work
> with the Project.
>
> * As a volunteer for our Project, you will be working with Mozilla staff,
> employees and other volunteers;
>
> * As a volunteer, you will not receive any payment from Mozilla;
>
> * As a volunteer, you cannot bind Mozilla to any agreements or sign any
> agreements on behalf of Mozilla, but you can introduce Mozilla to different
> ideas, processes and ways of doing things;
>
> * You are not an employee or contractor of Mozilla and should not
> represent yourself as such;
>
> * You cannot engage in any activities that violate the laws of your
> locale, Mozilla's policies, or the rights of any group or individual;
>
> * You agree to behave in a professional and respectable manner when acting
> as a Mozilla volunteer. See our Participation Guidelines [link] for more
> information;
>
> * It's definitely okay to talk about your contributions to Mozilla, but
> before you use Mozilla's logo or trademarks, please read through our
> trademark policy [link];
>
> * This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or give
> this to any other person or group;
>
> * If you violate any of these rules, Mozilla has the right to end this
> agreement and your volunteer activities.
> _______________________________________________
> governance mailing list
> gover...@lists.mozilla.org
> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/governance
>



Axel Hecht

unread,
Jun 10, 2014, 6:48:09 PM6/10/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
On 6/10/14 6:45 PM, Gervase Markham wrote:
> * As a volunteer, you cannot bind Mozilla to any agreements or sign any
> agreements on behalf of Mozilla, but you can introduce Mozilla to
> different ideas, processes and ways of doing things;
>
> -- OK... but what happens if I do this anyway? Are we actually going to
> sue? Have there been any cases of this actually happening?

I think there have been cases that were at least close, or where there
was the intent. I've seen contributors trying to form local legal
entites to get government funds, for example. I'm not aware that we had
folks actually getting to the point of signing stuff, though.

Aside from trademark violations, I don't think we have a legal angle
here, but the folks that sign deals with volunteers misrepresenting
themselves could totally sue those individuals, I guess.

The point of these and other points is that folks might get sued if they
do non-smart things. And we'd not make an attempt to save them.

Axel

Benjamin Kerensa

unread,
Jun 12, 2014, 7:29:02 AM6/12/14
to Emma Irwin, davidweld...@gmail.com, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
On Jun 10, 2014 11:00 AM, "Emma Irwin" <emma....@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> "As a volunteer for our Project"
>
> 'our project' seems a bit too possessive/excluding. Perhaps 'As a
> volunteer for Mozilla' or 'As a volunteer for the Mozilla Project.
>

Yeah this seems contrary to the "One Mozilla" saying.

> What I'm having trouble with, is how an 'agreement' would be perceived to
> casual volunteers who step up to help 'once in a while' : helping in IRC
,
> editing a Wiki, submitting single PR for a bug they found and fixed...
The
> Red Cross was mentioned, but I'm not sure if they have this same type of
> casual and one-off volunteerism?
>

Also volunteering for Red Cross is different then volunteering for an open
source project. I would imagine some people see their contributions as more
to the Mozilla the project and less so to the Mozilla entities.

Frankly one reason we probably have more volunteers than the Red Cross is
because of the lack of formalities.

Janet Swisher

unread,
Jun 12, 2014, 5:50:18 PM6/12/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
On Thursday, June 12, 2014 6:29:02 AM UTC-5, Benjamin Kerensa wrote:

>
> Frankly one reason we probably have more volunteers than the Red Cross is
> because of the lack of formalities.

Invalid assumption: they have 500,000 volunteers in the US: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_red_cross#Organization

OTOH, it is pretty clear when someone is doing volunteer activities for the Red Cross, and when they're not. E.g., "I am being a greeter for a blood bank." or "I am finding lodging for disaster survivors." But not "I am giving blood." (The latter is a donor, not a volunteer.)

With Mozilla, it can be unclear when someone's connection and participation with Mozilla crosses the line into volunteering. We need to clearly define what set of people or activities this applies to.

Benjamin Smedberg

unread,
Jun 13, 2014, 9:28:06 AM6/13/14
to Janet Swisher, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
On 6/12/14, 5:50 PM, Janet Swisher wrote:
> OTOH, it is pretty clear when someone is doing volunteer activities
> for the Red Cross, and when they're not. E.g., "I am being a greeter
> for a blood bank." or "I am finding lodging for disaster survivors."
> But not "I am giving blood." (The latter is a donor, not a volunteer.)

That certainly wasn't clear to me until you said this. I'm also not sure
why it matters.

> With Mozilla, it can be unclear when someone's connection and
> participation with Mozilla crosses the line into volunteering. We need
> to clearly define what set of people or activities this applies to.

Or accept that there isn't a line, there's a continuum, and give up on
this weird "agreement" thing which seems to be misguided.

--BDS

Robert Kaiser

unread,
Jun 13, 2014, 10:03:36 AM6/13/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
davidweld...@gmail.com schrieb:
> * This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or give this to any other person or group;

This sounds very unnecessary. If I don't sign anything, how should I
even be able to transfer anything. Also, Mozilla doesn't grant me
anything in this "agreement" anyhow, it's all only about what Mozilla
says I can't do. So what would there be to transfer anyhow?

KaiRo

Robert DC. Reyes

unread,
Jun 17, 2014, 1:02:09 AM6/17/14
to Robert Kaiser, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
I beg to disagree. It is straightforward. Though, re-wording it may be
better.

Based on my understanding:
It simply implies that the Agreement is executed between Mozilla and You,
being the volunteer. The Agreement is Non-Transferable nor can be extended
to any other individual other than the one who executed it.


Best regards,


Robert "Bob" Reyes
Mozilla Representative (PHL)
Mozilla Philippines Community
http://www.bobreyes.com
http://www.mozillaph.org


On Fri, Jun 13, 2014 at 10:03 PM, Robert Kaiser <ka...@kairo.at> wrote:

> davidweld...@gmail.com schrieb:
>
> * This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or give
>> this to any other person or group;
>>
>
> This sounds very unnecessary. If I don't sign anything, how should I even
> be able to transfer anything. Also, Mozilla doesn't grant me anything in
> this "agreement" anyhow, it's all only about what Mozilla says I can't do.
> So what would there be to transfer anyhow?
>
>

Majken Connor

unread,
Jun 17, 2014, 10:52:48 AM6/17/14
to Robert DC. Reyes, Robert Kaiser, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
I almost wonder if the intent her is so that volunteers don't try to police
each other... ie you hold yourself to this agreement but don't tell others
that they are or aren't violating the agreement.


On Tue, Jun 17, 2014 at 1:02 AM, Robert DC. Reyes <robert...@gmail.com>
wrote:

> I beg to disagree. It is straightforward. Though, re-wording it may be
> better.
>
> Based on my understanding:
> It simply implies that the Agreement is executed between Mozilla and You,
> being the volunteer. The Agreement is Non-Transferable nor can be extended
> to any other individual other than the one who executed it.
>
>
> Best regards,
>
>
> Robert "Bob" Reyes
> Mozilla Representative (PHL)
> Mozilla Philippines Community
> http://www.bobreyes.com
> http://www.mozillaph.org
>
>
> On Fri, Jun 13, 2014 at 10:03 PM, Robert Kaiser <ka...@kairo.at> wrote:
>
> > davidweld...@gmail.com schrieb:
> >
> > * This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or
> give
> >> this to any other person or group;
> >>
> >
> > This sounds very unnecessary. If I don't sign anything, how should I even
> > be able to transfer anything. Also, Mozilla doesn't grant me anything in
> > this "agreement" anyhow, it's all only about what Mozilla says I can't
> do.
> > So what would there be to transfer anyhow?
> >
> >

Regnard Raquedan

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Jun 17, 2014, 11:29:49 AM6/17/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
Joining in late in the discussion.

I get that this agreement is for risk mitigation, and the new draft seems
to side more with Mozilla's rights and protection.

But from the volunteer's point of view, what can I expect when something
happens to me while volunteering for Mozilla?




On Tue, Jun 17, 2014 at 10:52 AM, Majken Connor <maj...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I almost wonder if the intent her is so that volunteers don't try to police
> each other... ie you hold yourself to this agreement but don't tell others
> that they are or aren't violating the agreement.
>
>
> On Tue, Jun 17, 2014 at 1:02 AM, Robert DC. Reyes <robert...@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
> > I beg to disagree. It is straightforward. Though, re-wording it may be
> > better.
> >
> > Based on my understanding:
> > It simply implies that the Agreement is executed between Mozilla and You,
> > being the volunteer. The Agreement is Non-Transferable nor can be
> extended
> > to any other individual other than the one who executed it.
> >
> >
> > Best regards,
> >
> >
> > Robert "Bob" Reyes
> > Mozilla Representative (PHL)
> > Mozilla Philippines Community
> > http://www.bobreyes.com
> > http://www.mozillaph.org
> >
> >
> > On Fri, Jun 13, 2014 at 10:03 PM, Robert Kaiser <ka...@kairo.at> wrote:
> >
> > > davidweld...@gmail.com schrieb:
> > >
> > > * This Agreement is about you and only you. You may not transfer or
> > give
> > >> this to any other person or group;
> > >>
> > >
> > > This sounds very unnecessary. If I don't sign anything, how should I
> even
> > > be able to transfer anything. Also, Mozilla doesn't grant me anything
> in
> > > this "agreement" anyhow, it's all only about what Mozilla says I can't
> > do.
> > > So what would there be to transfer anyhow?
> > >
> > >
> > > KaiRo
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > governance mailing list
> > > gover...@lists.mozilla.org
> > > https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/governance
> > >
> > _______________________________________________
> > governance mailing list
> > gover...@lists.mozilla.org
> > https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/governance
> >
> _______________________________________________
> governance mailing list
> gover...@lists.mozilla.org
> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/governance
>



--
*Regnard Raquedan, MBA, MSc.*
http://weboplex.com
@regnard <https://twitter.com/regnard>

davidweld...@gmail.com

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Jun 20, 2014, 5:46:48 PM6/20/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
> Frankly one reason we probably have more volunteers than the Red Cross is
> because of the lack of formalities.

As Janet pointed out, the Red Cross has many more volunteers than Mozilla. Since we're intentionally growing the size of our community to approach the size of their volunteer base and since we have a range of contribution opportunities that go beyond coding, I think the Red Cross is a more useful model for us to be looking at than open source projects.

Mozilla certainly started with a focus on producing open source code and we still create open source code to advance the mission, but we've grown beyond being 'just' an open source project -- we're a global volunteer-based mission-driven project and organization.

This evolution in the project is why we're having this discussion about a volunteer agreement now. There was a time when the growth and health of the community happened organically without support from any organization and we're now moving into having Mozilla invest in a more intentional, systematic way to connect people to the project and keep them involved.

I'm very excited that we're moving into a place where we're being more intentional and there will be great things about this -- see the recent community Town Hall for more details.

One of the things we need to be intentional about now is making sure that potential new volunteers have a basic understanding of how Mozilla operates and that they know about the rules that exist. And we want to be able to make sure potential new volunteers have seen that information and we're all on the same page.

> With Mozilla, it can be unclear when someone's connection and participation
> with Mozilla crosses the line into volunteering. We need to clearly define
> what set of people or activities this applies to.

We're doing the work now to be very clear about when someone crosses a threshold into becoming a volunteer. You can see how we're documenting active contributor levels for every part of the organization at:

https://wiki.mozilla.org/Contribute/Areas#SmartSheet_version

The audience for this proposed new volunteer agreement is people who are about to become active contributors. The Get Involved page is the place where we can reach those people as they set out on the contribution pathways we're building for the different parts of the project.

We've compared this document to other similar documents in other volunteer based organizations and it seems very friendly and light weight to me (compare this to the 50-page Red Cross document referenced earlier in the thread).

In terms of next steps, I propose putting this on the agenda at the next Grow Mozilla meeting and anyone here who still has questions, comments or concerns should go there.

https://wiki.mozilla.org/Grow/Meeting_06_26_14

We've had this on the agenda there three times already recently and the people working directly with new volunteers in functional and regional areas across the project have been supportive of the language and proposed method of adding it to the Get Involved page.

Thanks,
David

Axel Hecht

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Jun 22, 2014, 12:00:48 PM6/22/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
I don't think that preaching to your own choir is the answer here.

Also, it's been emphasized that everybody should be working with
contributors, not just the people on that call.

Please address the comments you receive on this forum here.

Axel

Robert Kaiser

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Jun 22, 2014, 8:56:45 PM6/22/14
to mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
davidweld...@gmail.com schrieb:
>> Frankly one reason we probably have more volunteers than the Red Cross is
>> because of the lack of formalities.
>
> As Janet pointed out, the Red Cross has many more volunteers than Mozilla. Since we're intentionally growing the size of our community to approach the size of their volunteer base and since we have a range of contribution opportunities that go beyond coding, I think the Red Cross is a more useful model for us to be looking at than open source projects.

Yes and no. Most of the contributions to our project need way less legal
framework, IMHO, and actually some of the wording of this contributor
agreement fall into exactly the category of what would make me turn
around and run away if I was only a casual contributor.
If I'd volunteer with the Red Cross, I'd much more receiving for such an
agreement as I'd be quite likely to be working in direct contact with
people the organization interacts with and would be seen by those as a
representative of the organization.
Those assumptions do not hold true for casual contributors to Mozilla.

(And a notion of "this is not transferable" is just bogus when you don't
sign it anyhow, IMHO.)

KaiRo

Benjamin Kerensa

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Jun 22, 2014, 11:05:48 PM6/22/14
to Robert Kaiser, mozilla-g...@lists.mozilla.org
On Sun, Jun 22, 2014 at 5:56 PM, Robert Kaiser <ka...@kairo.at> wrote:
> davidweld...@gmail.com schrieb:
>
>>> Frankly one reason we probably have more volunteers than the Red Cross is
>>> because of the lack of formalities.
>>
>>
>> As Janet pointed out, the Red Cross has many more volunteers than Mozilla.
>> Since we're intentionally growing the size of our community to approach the
>> size of their volunteer base and since we have a range of contribution
>> opportunities that go beyond coding, I think the Red Cross is a more useful
>> model for us to be looking at than open source projects.
>
>
> Yes and no. Most of the contributions to our project need way less legal
> framework, IMHO, and actually some of the wording of this contributor
> agreement fall into exactly the category of what would make me turn around
> and run away if I was only a casual contributor.
> If I'd volunteer with the Red Cross, I'd much more receiving for such an
> agreement as I'd be quite likely to be working in direct contact with people
> the organization interacts with and would be seen by those as a
> representative of the organization.
> Those assumptions do not hold true for casual contributors to Mozilla.

Like Robert points out there are some significant differences between
volunteering for the Red Cross and being a volunteer for Mozilla. Red
Cross volunteers are often on the front line working in an equal
capacity to the very few paid chapter or national staff that may be
involved in a disaster.

Here are some takeaways from the Red Cross Volunteer Handbook:
"Volunteers are indispensable and are how the American Red Cross
accomplishes its
mission. They shall be extended the right to be given meaningful
assignments, the right to be treated as equal co-workers, the right to
effective supervision, the right to full
involvement and participation and the right to recognition for work done."

"Volunteers may be involved in all programs and activities of the
organization. Volunteers and employees are partners in implementing
the mission and programs of the American Red Cross. Volunteers and
employees have equal and complementary roles to play."

Even for our long term contributors, I do not always think volunteers
and employees are partners in implementing the mission and programs of
Mozilla. I think input is allowed but at the end of the day employees
are drivers for most decisions and there are conversations and
information that is kept inside the corporate silo.

Now let me say that I do think there are a good number of employees
who treat contributors as equal and try to be inclusive, but I still
think we have these silos that the Red Cross does not have.

For me, it seems like this agreement is only advantageous for Mozilla
the organization and not for the contributor. In the case of the Red
Cross it seems like their agreements are advantageous for everyone
because it outlines the rights and things contributors can expect from
the Red Cross.

Mind you, as you pointed out existing contributors would not need to
agree to this so I’m still unsure why this would be beneficial for
future contributors but not useful for existing contributors.

Finally I still have been unable to find any other Open Source
projects that require this kind of an agreement to contribute. Also
how would this agreement work for contributors that contribute as a
downstream partner submitting a patch upstream to Mozilla? Would we
really require downstream who do one-off or episodic contributions to
agree to this?

Benjamin Smedberg

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Jun 24, 2014, 12:14:18 PM6/24/14