Tuesday, September 09, 2008


Yesterday at DIDW world I attended the morning part of the IDTBD workshop; an effort to create a new organisation that is an umbrella for e.g. OpenID foundation, Data Portability Project, Open Web or Information Card Foundation.
While I think that there are good reasons to try and the mission is honorable I think that this will not work as proposed. (I don't have access to the documents...)
In the end the whole thing is about money/funds, power/control and community. And not to forget IPR.

Something that might work, I think, is an organisation that is merely a helper organisation for the other organisations. It provides help to set up a non-profit org, to define bylaws, maybe secretary services, provide financial knowledge, fund raising knowledge, tax knowledge, HR knowledge etc. But this neworg has not power in the "real" organisation. It provides services to the real organistion by helping with issues the techies usually have problems with.
This would be not the big dream neworg but usefull.

Please don't mind this Kindergarden example. In Berlin there is an organisation called "Dachverband Berliner Kinder- und Schülerläden e.V." (DAKS). You could translate this as "Non-profit umbrella organisation of Berlin's Kinder- and Schülerläden". It provides this kind of services to its member Kinderläden. A Kinderladen is a Kindergarden that is run by the parents and not be the local government. Parents are no experts on how to run a Kinderladen and this knowledge gap is filled by the umbrella organisation's services. (The DAKS sees itself as a politcal representative of the 650 Kinderlädern in Berlin also).

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