Advisory Council Proposal


Welcome to the public discussion about the .NET Foundation Advisory Council Proposal. My name is Jay Schmelzer, president of the .NET Foundation and I, along with the other .NET Foundation board directors (Gianugo Rabellino, Miguel de Icaza), will be watching over this discussion forum closely. Please help us establish an influential advisory council that will help guide .NET Foundation governance and operations by providing feedback on the proposal. See our Call for Public Comment which explains the reason for the Advisory Council.

Please read the .NET Foundation Advisory Council Proposal (PDF). We’re looking forward to your feedback.


At the risk of sounding like a grammar nazi, but this line in the objectives “[…] governance of the foundation, it’s projects, and the ecosystem” --> should be its :wink:


The call for public comments is a dead link.


How will this relate to existing organizations such as the OWIN working group and F# Software Foundation?


Regarding the Microsoft/non-Microsoft split: what happens if somebody joins the council in one capacity, but then either leaves or joins Microsoft during their tenure?


Nice catch. Thanks for pointing it out.


Section 7.4 States that there are 12 meetings / year, but the invite letter suggests advisory members should “Attend four advisory meetings per year”… These should be made consistent.


Also the invite letter at the end states:

We will be calling you within the next few days to answer your questions and to give you a
personal invitation to join the board. Thank you, and we look forward to talking with you.

But I suspect the word board should be replaced with council in this case.


Given the the Call for Comments link is dead currently, would someone be willing to share if it is the intention of the board to receive recommendations/nominations from this thread? In private? Not at all?

I am strongly in favor of this council, I’m just not sure how much feedback beyond the grammatical you are looking for, either in public or in private.


@Bertrand_Le_Roy I think it’s up now. It was flakey for me this morning too, but I’m hitting it now.


We really appreciate the feedback @ReedCopsey. We’ll definitely try to make sure they are consistent when we are at the point of sending out invitations to join the advisory council.


And is the intention to potentially not have any Microsoft people eventually? I hope they keep a strong commitment to it for a long time!!


So 12 meetings a year with a minimum attendance at 4. Will all these be in person meetings? Presumably members would be expected to attend all meetings if possible?


Sorry @trayburn if you’ve had issues getting access to the content. We are working hard to resolve any issues.

Great to hear you like the idea of the Advisory Council. There has already been several people who have expressed interest in being on the Council. If you are interested, please let us know at Please don’t rely on the forum thread as your interest is likely to get lost in the discussion.


@Dave_Noderer, Microsoft employees are the project owners for the majority of projects currently in the foundation. We are heavily committed to participating in and to the success of the .NET Foundation.

It is likely that there will be geographic diverse representation on the council, so likely that the meetings of the council will be via conference call. That said, it will be up to the council and council members (once formed) to decide how to best conduct business. The current feeling is that, if the council is to be productive, the members need to be fully engaged, willing to take on work items and in regular attendance.


@dnfadmin What is the expected timeframe for setting up and choosing advisory council members?


The 4 week public comment period for the advisory council proposal will end Nov 7th. Feedback will be consolidated and incorporated into the document. There is a .NET Foundation board meeting on Nov 18th where a resolution will be voted on to approve the proposal post public feedback. If it passes (and I’ll be optimistic and will assume it will), the board will specify a nomination period of between 2 - 4 weeks (because of the holiday season) and a method of selection. I’m assuming we should have proposed council members sometime early in 2015.


You are raising a very valid point @panesofglass. Let me try to dissect:

  • I don’t believe there is a problem in conflicting charters - those organizations have a very specific mission, whereas the .NET Foundation has a broader scope. I don’t see a big issue in terms of confusion, especially given the audiences we are addressing who tend to be very knowledgeable
  • It goes without saying that we intend to cooperate closely with each and every org dedicated to supporting .NET - and actually open source in general. I am confident the same goes for the other orgs - I’m sure they will be more than willing to work together
  • the tricky part is in the details on how to effectively collaborate. This is an area where I think the Advisory Council will be key in setting boundaries and rules of engagement, e.g. acceptance criteria for projects that may fit better in a more specific org (say an F# project), how to efficiently do cross-promotion for things we have in common, or how to address areas of overlap (we know there will be some).

I’m looking forward to suggestions for this group. And to put my money where my mouth is I’ll start by asking whether we should explicitly extend an invitation to the Advisory Council to members from OWIN and the F# foundation, so that we can make sure a conversation is happening at all times.


Not sure if this should be in the charter or not but I think an added goal of the council should be to also help open source projects. The biggest hurdle I see (and have myself on some projects) in open sourcing a project is the legal question of can I can open source the project or not. While I realize the council may not have/be lawyers they may either via experience know what can be done and cannot be done or know who to ask about the legal questions.


Having the existing members vote on new members for the current year risks the criticism that the council could become a ‘privileged club’ whose members continually back each others participation.

For example, I have an issue with the work of the Foundation. I decide that one of the most effective ways to seek change ought to be to apply for membership and ‘be the change’. However, my application is rebuffed, and the committee remains the same. I then take to social media to complain that the membership voting process is conducted ‘behind closed doors’ and works to people who are critical of the current advisory council from being elected.
Whilst the board might be good people, and I might have been rejected for valid reasons, the lack of external input to the makeup of the board means I can now characterize my rejection as a refusal of the Foundation to respond to criticism on social media.

So I think we need a process that allows external input into the decision as to who the members are.

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