What’s happening with FHISO? - Wed, 25 Feb 2015
To the FHISO Board, TSC Coordinators and Membership,
Richard Smith said on Feb 21: "Earlier this year, the FHISO Board, TSC and other stakeholders decided that designing a new conclusion-transfer format /ab initio/ was not currently a priority … and unless and until we have the resources to develop a new technology we’d like to focus on incremental changes …"
As a paying individual member of FHISO, I am interested in seeing FHISO moving forward and not having to sluff anything off, especially due to lack of resources, which in this case I think means people and expertise. Richard mentions the FHISO Board. Have they been meeting 4 times a year as required in the Bylaws? Do we have minutes of the Board being recorded to document the decisions the Board is making and the actions it is taking? Is the general membership allowed access to the minutes to see what is being decided?
I am concerned because I did see (and retweeted) the really-nice-to-see picture of the meeting of the four FHISO Board members at RootsTech 2015 this month and that was great. But from what people tell me about RootsTech this year, FHISO was almost invisible and never mentioned there. There was no FHISO information available, there were no lectures centralizing on a new standard, and nobody organized any discussions or even informal meetings for interested people about it. This was, for goodness sake, Roots "Tech" and there were all sorts of developers there who could have an interest and maybe participate to help develop the new standard. If nothing else, Drew Smith should have been advertising himself as the Chair of FHISO and promoting FHISO, but he only seemed to be referred to as one of the two Genealogy Guys. Is FHISO not at all interested in looking for people with skills and interest in helping the effort?
What of our Founding Members? There are some great companies in FHISO’s Founding Member list. As an individual member, I’m disappointed to see that not more than 20 unaffiliated individuals have taken enough of an interest in the past year to participate in the TSC mailing list. And of us, very few were and are willing to volunteer for the Technical Standing Committees when so many are needed. There’s a lot to do and it will never happen at the current pace.
I’d like to know if the Board has considered asking their Founding Members to send some people to participate in the discussions and help FHISO create a momentum that will get this new standard creation going. If the Board has not, then it would be my suggestion that they do. If FHISO can get one or two people from each Founding Member to actively and interestedly help with FHISOs goals, then that could really get the ball rolling. Plus there would be the double advantage of giving those members a stake in this, to make it happen, and it will.
My biggest worry is that there’s nothing happening in the background. No Board Meetings. No decisions. No initiative. I as a member am completely in the dark as to what’s going on. Please reassure me.
This article has also been posted on the FHISO TSC-public mailing list.