FYI, I've just submitted a group for Drupal Guilds & Open Guilds, which is a concept that I've been brewing for about a year now (based on discussions and other ideas that have taken a decade or more to gel). I've finally begun writing down some of my ideas for this this summer, and have decided it's time to open the concept for further discussion and debate. Without further ado, here is the elevator pitch for this grassroots organization:
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; process for gaining membership; and a scope of certification. A charter may, for instance, specify that it is to be run by parliamentary procedure with an elected council, that it is an open democracy, or that it is run entirely by a single Guild Master.
The Open Guilds organization itself is run by a council of Vested Members, who are individuals who have paid their dues. 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.
I also have a draft of Bylaws which I plan to post as soon as I've polished it a bit. It gets into some nitty gritty, such as how to handle business and procedures for creating guilds & certifications. But I want to open up discussion and get other interested folks involved, so as to solidify the concept before opening it to the general public.