Bylaws of the Open Drupal Guilds (version 0.9)

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Concept

The Open Guilds website at http://openguilds.org/ (and its cousin http://drupalguilds.org/ for Drupal) is a central location for grassroots certifications for practitioners of various Open Source software. The idea is that rather than a top-down certification process where people pay money to an organization to take a test, people instead prove to their peers their ability to craft in their field.

The organization of Open Guilds is set up to foster a peer review system. Anyone may create a guild within the organization, and set up their own certification procedures at various levels within the guild. Each guild will stand on its own merit, and gain the benefit of camaraderie from other related guilds.

Each guild within Open Guilds will have its own charter, which will specify, among other things, its system of governance and procedure; and a scope of certification. A charter may, for instance, specify that it is to be run by parliamentary procedure with an elected council, or that it is an open democracy.

The Open Guilds organization itself is run by a council of Vested Members, who are individuals actively involved over a period of time. The meetings themselves are conducted on-line in a visible format, with all matters decided by the majority vote of Vested Members.

Other than the right to vote on procedural matters, membership to Open Guilds is free to all individuals, who may join as Journey Members. Journey Members may join any guild, according to its charter (which may, for instance, require an invitation or approval vote by its council, specific certification within another guild, or other requirements).

A guild may specify many certifications, each of which may have requisite certifications. Although a guild’s charter may specify otherwise, in most cases, a certification will require a test or demonstration of ability to be evaluated by one or more certified members of the guild. The reputation of an individual guild will depend on the continuing diligent and truthful evaluation by the guild members.

Bylaws (version 0.9)

Definitions
Open Guilds
Open Guilds refers to the organization these Bylaws apply to. Its website is at http://openguilds.org/.
Drupal Guilds
Drupal Guilds refers to a subset of the Open Guilds, and is fully subject to the rules laid out in these Bylaws. Its website is at http://drupalguilds.org/.
Individual
An Individual must be a human being. Corporations, Organizations, or any other collection of individuals may not be considered to be an individual for purposes of these Bylaws.
  1. Purpose of the Open Guilds

    Open Guilds acts as an organization for the training, certification and professionalism of practitioners of various Open Source crafts. The website at http://openguilds.org/ serves to facilitate the purposes of the organization.

  2. Membership

    Three types of membership are available within Open Guilds: Individual Members, Vested Members, and Organizational Members. All Journey and Vested Members are also collectively referred to as Open Guilds Members.

    1. Individual Membership

      Any individual may become a Individual Member by registering with the site and agreeing to uphold and be bound by the Open Guilds Bylaws and any Terms of Service. Unless otherwise provided by the Bylaws, there are no fees or dues required of Individual Members. Individual Members may join any Guild that is open for Membership, and may participate fully according to that Guild’s charter, as permitted per the Bylaws.

      1. Participation in General Business

        Individual Members may participate in any general business or discussion as permitted per the Bylaws, although they may not vote on items or elections unless they are also Vested Members.

    2. Vested Membership

      An Individual Member who has been a member for at least a month, shall also be considered a Vested Member, so long as they have also logged in to the site at least once during the past month.

      1. Dues and Fees

        At this time, there are currently no dues or fees to be a Vested Member. However, should the Bylaws in the future choose to assign dues or fees to be considered a Vested Member, then after a probationary period, this fee is non-refundable.

      2. Probationary Period

        There is a thirty day probationary period during which the Individual Member is considered to be a Probationary Member. Once the probationary period has passed, then the Individual Member shall also be considered to be a Vested Member.

      3. Lapse of Vested Membership

        If a Vested Member has not logged onto the site for at least thirty days, they shall revert to Individual Membership, losing all privileges accorded to a Vested Member until such time as they again log on. If more than 90 days have passed since the last login, then if the individual logs on again, they must then resume a new Probationary Period.

      4. Voting Rights in General Business

        Once an Individual Member has passed the probationary period, they receive full voting privileges as provided per the Bylaws.

    3. Open Guilds Membership

      Each Individual and Vested Member is also considered an Open Guilds Member. Open Guilds Members may participate fully in the discussions of any business, except as may be restricted per the Bylaws.

    4. Organizational Membership

      Corporations, Organizations, and other collectives of individuals may apply to join Open Guilds with various levels of sponsorship, pending approval by the Open Guilds Meeting. So long as any required fees and dues are fully paid, they may be active and receive full organizational benefits as allowed per the Bylaws. Under no circumstance shall any Organizational Member receive any voting privileges. However, individuals within an organization that is an Organizational Member are not otherwise precluded from participating with Open Guilds in all respects as allowed per the Bylaws, as each individual is deemed a free agent who represents herself or himself.

    5. Revocation of Membership

      At any time, an individual or organization may choose to revoke their own Membership. Additionally, there may be other provisions in the Bylaws providing for a revocation of a Membership. In no case, unless otherwise provided per the Bylaws, shall any previously paid dues or fees be refunded to an individual or organization having their Membership revoked. If a Membership has been revoked, then so shall all resultant privileges provided per the Bylaws.

  3. Open Guilds Meeting

    All business of the Open Guilds is conducted in an ongoing online agenda referred to as the Open Guilds Meeting, unless otherwise specified per the Bylaws. All Open Guilds Members may fully participate in any discussion pertaining to an item on the rolling agenda, but only Vested Members may add a motion to the agenda or vote on the resolution of any such item, except as otherwise specified per the Bylaws.

    1. Agenda

      At any time, any Vested Member may add a motion to the agenda. The agenda shall be updated immediately, and the item and any resultant discussion shall be publicly visible.

      1. Regular Business

        Any motion other than a Bylaws change requires a simple majority of the voting quorum to pass.

      2. Bylaws Changes

        Any motion regarding changes to the Bylaws will require a two-thirds majority vote of the voting quorum to pass.

    2. Voting

      A motion requires a vote to determine its resolution, and all voting members shall have a period of time in which to record their vote on the matter. A vote may be changed by that member at any time during the allowed period, and will be recorded in an open manner unless otherwise specified per the Bylaws.

      1. Voting Period

        Unless otherwise determined by the Bylaws, a motion will be open for voting for two weeks, or until the number of ‘Aye’ votes greater than the majority (or greater than two-thirds of the members for motions changing the Bylaws) of active Vested Members is reached, whichever comes first.

      2. Voting Quorum

        The votes from a quorum of three Voting Members, or one-third of all active Vested Members, whichever is greater, is required for he successful resolution of any motion.

      3. Voting Resolution

        For normal business items, a motion passes if a number of ‘Aye’ votes greater than the majority of the voting quorum is reached. For items requiring changes to the Bylaws, then a two-thirds majority of the voting quorum is instead required. Unless otherwise specified by the Bylaws, all votes shall be recorded publicly, and may be changed at any time before resolution of the motion.

  4. Chartered Guilds

    Any Vested Member may petition to the Open Guilds Meeting to create a new Guild. This petition consists of a title, description, and charter. Once created, the petition will require a number of signatures of other Individual Members. After those signatures have been acquired, the new charter will be added to the Open Guilds Meeting for consideration as a motion. A majority vote as outlined in the Open Guilds Meeting section of the Bylaws will result in the Guild being accessible and displayed to the general public.

    1. Guild Charters

      A Guild Charter shall indicate the format of a Guild’s membership and governance. When creating a petition to form a Guild, various options shall be available to the petitioning member, which will collectively form the charter.

      1. Petition to Form a Guild

        Once a Petition to Form a Guild has been created, it will be published and available from a page of pending petitions. Any Open Guilds Members may comment on and/or sign the petition. Once at least three (3) Individual Members have signed the petition, it will be submitted for approval as a motion to the Open Guilds Meeting as a Regular Business agenda item, and removed from the page of pending petitions. An Open Guilds Member may only create up to one Petition to Form a Guild per thirty days.

      2. Petition Options

        A Petition to Form a Guild will include at least the desired Title, Description, and Purpose of the Guild. It will also list the form of Governance from available options, currently 'Democratic' or 'Parliamentary'.

      3. Initial Membership

        The Petition must also name at least one initial Journey Member. If the charter for the guild is created, then all such named members shall be made Journey Members for that guild. Newly created Parliamentary Guilds shall be considered to be in Special Session as per the Bylaws, until one or more Guild Masters have been elected from their members.

    2. Guild Governance

      An individual Guild will be governed either as a democracy or a parliament of elected masters, as specified by its charter.

      1. Guild Business

        Except as further specified per the Bylaws, Business and Voting of an individual guild shall be conducted as outlined for General Business by the Open Guilds. Motions to their agenda shall be posted, and shall be open for voting amongst eligible members for up to two weeks, or until half of the guild’s quorum have voted Aye, whichever comes first, except as otherwise noted. However, an Individual Guild may not consider any changes to the Bylaws, nor changes to their charter; such items may only be considered by the General Meeting of the Open Guilds.

      2. Voting Quorum

        For purposes of determining the outcome of a vote, the voting quorum for an individual guild will consist of at least one eligible member, or one third of all eligible members, whichever is greater. However, if this quorum is less than three, then a motion must remain posted for at least two weeks before resolution.

    3. Democratic Guild

      Any Journey Member may vote on any item posted to a Democratic guild’s business. The quorum consists of all Journey Members who have logged on at least once in the past thirty days.

    4. Parliamentary Guild

      Only Masters of an individual Guild may vote on motions posted to a Parliamentary Guild’s business. The quorum consists of all Guild Masters who have logged on at least once in the past thirty days.

      1. Reversion of Governance

        In the case that there are no Guild Masters who have logged on at least once in the past thirty days, then that Parliamentary Guild shall be held in Special Session until such time as at least one Guild Master has again logged on.

      2. Special Session

        If a Parliamentary Guild has no Guild Masters who have logged onto the site within the past thirty days, then any Journey Members of that guild may conduct business, voting as though the Guild were a Democratic Guild. Any motions passed during Special Session will be binding. However, if any Guild Master of that guild logs on during a Special Session, then the governance reverts to Parliamentary; any votes by Journey Members on pending motions shall be rendered invalid; and the clock for consideration of a motion shall be reset, so that a motion shall be open for another two weeks from that time.

      3. Veto by Grand Master

        In the case of a Parliamentary Guild, the Grand Master of that Guild shall have the power of veto. As such, the Grand Master may choose to veto any motion, causing it to fail, unless two-thirds of the voting membership vote Aye. If the Grand Master vetoes a motion, the motion will remain open for further consideration until either two weeks from the original posting or one week from the veto, whichever is later, or until two thirds of eligible Masters have voted Aye.

    5. Apprenticeships

      Any Individual Member of the Open Guilds may join any Chartered Guild as an Apprentice.

      1. Discussion Participation

        Apprentices of a Chartered Guild may participate fully in any business or discussions within that guild, but may not vote in their meetings.

      2. Mentors to Apprentices

        Apprentices may be assigned volunteer Mentors from other Apprentices or Journey Members of that guild, who agree to help that apprentice advance through the guild. Additionally, any member within the guild may offer help or advice beyond the formal structure of mentorship. Mentorships are detailed elsewhere in the Bylaws.

      3. Certifications

        A guild may offer one or more certifications. An Apprentice may at any time actively work towards certification, and may petition that guild for certification as outlined elsewhere in the Bylaws.

    6. Journey Members

      An Apprentice of a Chartered Guild may petition that guild to become a Journey Member. Such a petition will be considered as a Regular Business item on that guild’s agenda.

      1. Failed Petition

        If a motion to become a Journey Member within a guild fails, then the Apprentice may not again petition that guild to become a Journey Member for at least thirty days.

      2. Voting Privileges

        Journey Members who are part of a Democratic Guild shall receive voting privileges within that guild. They do not receive voting rights within a Parliamentary Guild, nor may they add a motion to the business of that guild, except as otherwise specified within the Bylaws. However, they may otherwise participate freely in that guild’s business.

    7. Guild Masters

      A Journey Member may petition that guild to become a Guild Master. Such a petition will be considered as a Regular Business item on that guild’s agenda.

      1. Probationary Period as Journey Member

        A Journey Member must have held the position of Journey Member for at least thirty days within a guild before being allowed to petition to become a Guild Master.

      2. Failed Petition

        If a motion to become a Guild Master within a guild fails, then the Journey Member may not again petition that guild to become a Journey Member for at least thirty days.

      3. Voting Privileges

        Guild Masters who are part of either a Democratic or Parliamentary Guild shall receive voting privileges within that guild. They may also add motions to that guild’s business.

    8. Grand Masters

      Parliamentary Guilds may choose to elect a Grand Master from among their Guild Masters. In such a case, the Grand Master shall hold the position for at least a year from the date of election, or until another election is held, whichever comes first.

      1. Elections

        Any Guild Master may petition to hold an election for Grand Master of that guild, as a regular agenda item, so long as the post is vacant, or there has not been an election within the past year. If the motion passes, and at least one Guild Master has declared an intention to run for the post of Grand Master as a nominee, within thirty days of the motion’s passage, then an election shall be held. The election shall begin thirty days from the motion’s passage, and voting and discussion may occur for at least two weeks. An election shall be considered special business, and the outcome shall be determined secretly, so that the individual votes of members are not disclosed. The results of the election shall also not be disclosed until two weeks have passed. Members may change their vote at any time during the election. Elections are not subject to veto by the standing Grand Master. All Journey Members who are part of the guild may vote in the election, and the quorum is determined from active Journey Members of that guild. Journey Members may vote for one or more nominees. The nominee of an election who receives the most votes wins. In the case of a tie of two or more nominees, one or more run-off elections of two weeks each shall be conducted from the tied nominees, until a clear winner is declared or until the other nominee(s) concedes the election.

      2. Veto Powers

        The Grand Master of a Parliamentary Guild receives the power to veto a regular motion of that guild as detailed in the Bylaws.

      3. Motion to Impeach

        A Guild Master may enter a motion to impeach the Grand Master. If the motion passes, then a new motion will be created for special session by all Journey Members of that guild to consider. A majority of Journey Members must vote Aye to impeach, and all such votes shall be held secret. If the motion in the special session passes, then the Grand Master shall be stripped of the title and powers, and the post shall be vacant until another election is held.

  5. Certifications

    Individual Guilds may choose to offer certifications to its members. Any achieved certifications by a member will be listed on their profile page.

    1. Motion to Create a Certification

      Any Journey Member or Master eligible to do so may add a motion to create a certification, which must contain the certification’s Title and Description. Upon adoption of the motion, the Certification will be available for achievement by any member of the Guild, as per the Bylaws.

    2. Motion to Bestow/Achieve Certification

      Any eligible Journey Member or Master may add a motion to achieve a certification from their guild by adding a motion. Likewise, an eligible member may add a motion to bestow a certification on any member or apprentice of their guild. If the motion passes, then the certification shall be bestowed to that member; otherwise, a similar motion for that member may not be made for at least thirty days.

    3. Listing of Certifications

      A list of all achieved/bestowed certifications shall be maintained for the guild. Also, all such certifications shall be listed on that member’s profile on the site.

  6. Mentorships

    One or more Mentors may be assigned to individual Apprentices or Journey Members. Mentors are responsible for helping to guide and advocate for that member. Such mentorships are voluntary, and have no binding power, other than that such mentorships shall be publicly listed on the guild and the relevant members’ profile pages. Mentorships may be assigned only by agreement of both parties, and may be revoked at any time by either party.

(These Bylaws are also cross-posted at the Drupal Guild Group.)

Comments

arthur's picture

A bunch of years ago Gregory

A bunch of years ago Gregory Heller was talking about something along similar lines. Just as an FYI.

Benjamin Melançon's picture

Aye.

Hi Aaron, thanks for your efforts to explain and work on Drupal / Open Guilds! Wanted to say that i'm in general support of the idea – and that it would make sense for guilds to fit into the Drupal training ecosystem. I wonder if some other functions of guilds should be built up with or before the certification-specific ideas. Anyhow, Agaric would like to be more involved (or rather members of Agaric, as i don't think shops of whatever size have a role, but rather Drupalistas join guilds as individuals), when things are less busy!

best,
benjamin, agaric

The Society for Venturism has chosen me as the recipient of its charity for this year, to hopefully offer me cryonic preservation when the time comes. And this month, Longecity, an excellent forum for the discussion of issues related to extending the lifespan of humans, has offered up a matching grant of up to a thousand dollars to help out! So help out! Please.