[Owasp-leaders] 60/40 Membership Drive @ OWASP

James Wickett jwickett at impactnews.com
Mon Dec 8 15:01:32 EST 2008

Let's assume that companies won't pay for an individual's membership
because it doesn't provide perceived value to the company.  This is a
pure business decision.  To say it this way; a person's company will
pay for him to be an ISSA member since it gets him into the meetings.
However they won't pay for an OWASP membership since it doesnt get him
any additional benefits.  We don't want to have closed meetings, so
one part of the equation that we could modify is price.

One way around this would be to lower the cost and assume that the
individual will be purchasing the membership.  Since the company is
getting the same value (in training) by paying or not paying, we
should assume that a prospective member will be shouldering the entire
cost by themselves.  In today's economy, it seems more realistic to
ask a person for $25 than to ask for a $100.  Maybe we could have a
member package that is $25 which includes membership, and a membership
package that is $100 which includes some goodies (tee shirt,

I am just wondering if the price is a big issue for folks.  Maybe I am
just cheap, but I think alot of people want to see the personal value
they receive and not the altruistic value when making a decision.  Or,
have the monetary cost be low enough that they don't have to think
twice about it.


J.H. Wickett
General Manager, impactnews.com
Community Impact Newspaper
Local. Useful. Everyone Gets It.
(512) 989-6808 - Main Office
(512) 989-6809 - Fax
(512) 465-2623 - Austin Bureau


On Mon, Dec 8, 2008 at 11:48 AM, Mandeep Khera <mkhera at owasp.org> wrote:
> Jeff
> I know you and I have had conversations on this topic before. You were very
> clear about the mission and the openness of the organization. I like the
> public radio/TV concept. I think if we know this is our goal, it'll be very
> hard to have concrete goals around increasing the "paid" membership. I have
> been pitching in our meetings and explaining the benefits, goodwill etc.
> etc. but most people don't find those benefits a strong incentive to become
> a paid member. May be we can try to sweeten the pot and offer more gifts
> that can be sponsored (like the public radio model) and bigger discounts to
> attend the annual conference to encourage  more people to become members.
> Thanks
> Mandeep Khera
> Chief Marketing Officer
> Cenzic, Inc.
> www.cenzic.com | (866) 423-6942
> 455 El Camino Real, Ste. 100
> Santa Clara, CA 95050
> Phone: (408) 200-0712
> Email:  mandeep at cenzic.com
> Fax: (408) 200-0701
> #1 in Enterprise Web Application Vulnerability Assessment and Risk
> Management
> SC Magazine Best Buy
> http://www.cenzic.com/downloads/pdf/SC_magazine_04-2008.pdf
> Gartner Video: Web App Security
> https://www.cenzic.com/landing/GartnerVideo/
> ________________________________
> From: owasp-leaders-bounces at lists.owasp.org
> [mailto:owasp-leaders-bounces at lists.owasp.org] On Behalf Of Jeff Williams
> Sent: Saturday, December 06, 2008 9:38 PM
> To: 'James Wickett'; 'Tom Brennan - OWASP'
> Cc: 'Owasp-Leaders at Lists.Owasp'
> Subject: Re: [Owasp-leaders] 60/40 Membership Drive @ OWASP
> Hi James,
> OWASP has chosen a model where everything is free and open, so in one sense
> there's no benefit to becoming a member. Anyone can use whatever they want
> without paying anything.
> It sounds nuts, but we believe that we can reach more people and better
> achieve our mission with this strategy.  People interested in creating a
> world where software isn't ridiculously vulnerable can support us by
> becoming a member. 100% of membership money goes towards application
> security projects.
> I've found that the easiest way to explain it to people is to say that OWASP
> is like public radio, except that we don't have annoying membership drives
> that interrupt service all the time J  Actually, there are a few minor
> benefits for members, such as discounts on conferences.
> How do other people on the list respond to this?
> --Jeff
> Jeff Williams, Chair
> The OWASP Foundation
> work: 410-707-1487
> main: 301-604-4882
> From: owasp-leaders-bounces at lists.owasp.org
> [mailto:owasp-leaders-bounces at lists.owasp.org] On Behalf Of James Wickett
> Sent: Friday, December 05, 2008 1:12 PM
> To: Tom Brennan - OWASP
> Cc: Owasp-Leaders at Lists.Owasp
> Subject: Re: [Owasp-leaders] 60/40 Membership Drive @ OWASP
> What is the value proposition for a person or company to become a paying
> member of OWASP?
> People and companies in Austin have asked me about this, and I am not really
> sure what to tell them.
> Best,
> James
> ----
> J.H. Wickett
> General Manager, impactnews.com
> Community Impact Newspaper
> Local. Useful. Everyone Gets It.
> (512) 989-6808 - Main Office
> (512) 989-6809 - Fax
> (512) 465-2623 - Austin Bureau
> http://www.impactnews.com
> On Thu, Dec 4, 2008 at 9:04 AM, Tom Brennan - OWASP <tomb at owasp.org> wrote:
> The OWASP Foundation board has unanimously approved at our December Board
> Meeting (
> http://www.owasp.org/index.php/OWASP_Board_Meetings_December_Agenda )an
> amendment to the current individual/corporate membership model for 2009.
> The concept builds on the accomplishment of centralized processing of local
> chapter donations using the integrated button that is currently on every
> chapters wiki page.
> We are doing a MEMBERSHIP DRIVE FOLKS  - kicking off Jan 2009 - Dec 2009
> with a 60/40 split. 60% of the raised funds would go towards OWASP
> Foundation operations, grant projects, events, global committee budgets
> etc., and 40% of the funds would be ear-marked for your local OWASP chapter
> that with a scanned or receipt will be reimbursed with 30 days.
> MEMBERSHIP - http://www.owasp.org/index.php/Membership
> ----
> WHY?
> * The purpose of this MEMBERSHIP DRIVE is to encourage local chapters start
> evangelizing OWASP to local chapter members as well as corporate/educational
> members to join the mission to have measurable growth in 2009.
> * Additional funding of Grant Projects - http://www.owasp.org
> * This split model enables a funding model that the local chapters can
> utilize to fund events, refreshments, give-aways, video-cameras, provide
> "chapter grants" and more to meet the mission of OWASP Foundation regionally
> and utilize the global "bank"
> Devil in the details.....
> * We are still working out the logistical items of this announcement however
> we felt that with the holidays and the new year coming we needed to announce
> this NOW to get you thinking about it creatively for your local chapter and
> region.  If you see a road-block to the end result, please identify it and
> recommend a solution to the problem.  You can also contact your regional
> representative of the OWASP Global Membership Committee
> http://www.owasp.org/index.php/OWASP_EU_Summit_2008#NEW_GLOBAL_COMMITTEE_STR
> * Kate Hartman will be the primary point of contact for this effort in
> handling the money/invoices and questions in tracking this effort see:
> http://www.owasp.org/index.php/About_OWASP#Structure  Today you can steer
> individual members and corporate members to your chapter wiki page to make a
> donation online OR they can request a invoice from Kate Hartman or mail a
> check the "old fashion way"  In the end your local chapter will be given
> credit for the efforts with 40% of the income earmarked.
> If you have direct questions you are more then welcome to call me at
> 973-795-1046 or email tomb at owasp.org - OR simply reply to this unmoderated
> professional discussion with 275 people on it.
> Semper Fi,
> Tom Brennan
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> OWASP-Leaders at lists.owasp.org
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