This post is written by Ethan Senack, a member of Creative Commons USA and the Global Network Council Executive Committee.
Just over a year ago, the Executive Committee of the CC Global Network Council (GNC) launched an open process to collect feedback from all members on the network structure, with the purpose of understanding what was working and what was not, and to offer recommendations on how to make the structure work better for those on the ground and in local communities.
We were committed to making the process deeply open and transparent— not just in the procedure, but in the discussion and decision-making as well. That often conflicted with our desire to move forward and significantly extended the timeline, but we believed it was necessary to build trust, to encourage compromise, and to ensure that a variety of voices and perspectives were heard.
It wasn’t an easy process, but the result is a series of recommendations grounded in the input from our network, repeatedly reviewed and refined by members and chapter leads, and ultimately voted on by the Global Network Council.
That’s why I am proud to say, as of this week, the GNC has voted overwhelmingly to accept these recommendations.
From here, we can move forward as a stronger, more community-owned network. The full sets of recommendations are linked below, but here are just a few of the pieces we think will have a big impact:
- Local chapters will now have real input into membership decisions that affect their jurisdiction.
- Guidelines on chapter fundraising for CC efforts have been streamlined to make it easier for chapters to grow.
- We removed barriers and addressed issues around chapter structure that have caused confusion in practice.
- There are now clearer, more transparent processes for the Community Activities Fund and Certificate Scholarship program, supporting the disbursement of $30,000 (so far) to local organizing efforts and members.
I’m grateful to the Executive Committee (Lisette Kalshoven – CC Netherlands; Franco Giandana – CC Argentina; Alek Tarkowski – CC Poland; Liz Oyange – CC Kenya; Jorge Gemetto – CC Uruguay; as well as Claudio Ruiz, Delia Brown, and Cable Green from CC HQ), and to Julia Brungs, CC Network Manager, who all put in significant effort to get this process across the finish line. I also want to express appreciation for all the network members, chapter leads, and GNC representatives who spent time to submit comments, give feedback, and push for changes to make the Network better. Over the next few months, the ExCom, the GNC, and CC staff will have to work together to implement these changes.
You can see the entire process from start to finish in the following links:
- Launching a Review of the Network Structure: Call for Feedback
- Transcript of Submitted Comments
- Analysis of Submitted Comments
- Area 1: Membership
- Area 2: Funding and Volunteerism
- Area 3: Chapter and Network Structure
- Area 4: Miscellaneous