pdfreaders campaign

Mark Lamers mark at marklamers.nl
Thu Jul 14 07:34:58 CEST 2011

On Wed, Jul 13, 2011 at 10:52:01PM +0200, Sam Geeraerts wrote:
> Martijn Brekhof wrote:
> >On Tue, Jul 12, 2011 at 11:27 PM, Sam Geeraerts <samgee at fsfe.org> wrote:
> >
> >>Martijn Brekhof wrote:
> >>Apart from these details, I think that the letter is certainly usable, but
> >>I agree with others here that the style could do with some improvement. The
> >>rather literal translation is a bit forced and it sounds harsher than the
> >>English text to me. As spa8blauw says, it makes sense to put the emphasis
> >>more on how to make things better than to point a finger.
> >>
> >
> >Are you talkin about the original or the revised version?
> The original.
> My thoughts on the revised version:
> - I like the idea of an example text they can use. The less work
> they have to do, the more likely and the quicker they are to change
> it.
   Very good suggestion. I think Martijn hit that nail right on the
   head. Another poor Dutch -> English translation :)
> - It says that $PDFREADER uses a closed standard. I don't know how
> open the various versions of PDF are. $PDFREADER probably supports
> some that are not as open as we'd like. But I think this argument
> doesn't help our case. It would be more useful in a campaign against
> non-free PDF producing software.
> - A reference to more information about free software should be a
> link to a straightforward explanation about it, e.g. [1]. If they
> want to know even more, they can still click around on fsfe.org.
> >I agree but I think we should not deviate too much from the original
> >campaign which clearly states that it is about open standards.
> >http://pdfreaders.org/index.en.html
> If my reading of that website's title and the campaign's explanation
> [2] is correct, then [removing advertising of non-free PDF readers |
> promoting free PDF readers] is the campaign's primary focus.
> Secondary goals are promoting open standards and promoting
> neutrality.
   This is what I understood about the objective of the campaign.
   Quoting Matthias:

   The goal of this campaign the public administrations is not, that
   _they_ start using a Free PDFreader. The goal is that they remove
   non-free advertisement from their websites.  With PDFreaders.org we
   show them, that there are other vendor neutral readers. If they want
   to point their users to Free Software, they can do so. But they
   should definitely not do advertisement for one company.

   So in the spirit of the first translation by Jelle, we suggest they
   remove the advertisement for the non-free reader, And furthermore
   suggest they can do that by quoting the example Martijn came up with.

> IMHO, the two latter goals are slightly more difficult to argue for
> within the campaign.
> - If you say "stick to the versions of PDF that are open standards"
> then you also have to list those versions and do that in a
> comprehensible way (e.g. 'click "Save As" -> PDF 1.7', rather then
> 'the ISO 32000-1:2008 spec').
> - The list at pdfreaders.org only lists free software. That's more
> than just the 1 reader suggested on most websites, so we can claim
> it's more neutral. But some people might find exchanging one bias
> for another ironic.
> >>Third point: if we're to suggest that they put a link to pdfreaders.orgthen they need to be confident that it's not going to be a dead link in a
> >>few months time. When dealing with questions from website visitors, a link
> >>to good ol' Adobe seems like a safer bet than one to a campaign website from
> >>a organization you never heard of, which on top of that faces users with a
> >>choice.
> >>
> >
> >I agree that that is a problem and we ourselves are the solution to that.
> >Besides making sure the website will stay alive there is another problem of
> >keeping the information on the website up-to-date.
> >That is, linking to pdf-readers that really exist and are (still) open.

   Here is still an open question for Matthias or someone else from the
   pdf-readers campaign. How is the actuality guaranteed for the
   pdfreaders website.
> I'm confident that FSFE and its Fellows can keep the campaign going
> strong. My point was that our target audience, who don't know (much
> about) FSFE and its campaigns, should become just as confident about
> it. The website is simple and pretty, which helps a lot. We should
> be careful not to present it in the example letter as a campaign
> website, because that implies that it's short-lived.
   Maybe we can do that by suggesting how they can contact us and with
   what kind of questions. Or a short introduction of the FSFE with a
   link to the website.

> >>Now all we need is a masterfully skilled writer to pour all this into a few
> >>short fluent paragraphs. :)
> >>
> >:(
> >Don't underestimate the power of many.

   It would be nice if we can come to consensus on which points we would
   like to make, Write them out and then glue the letter around that

> Sorry, I was projecting my own lack of writing skills onto the group.
> I could say: don't underestimate the power of ego. But I'm sure that
> everyone here is ok with having something they wrote get ripped to
> pieces to create something better from it. Jelle is taking it pretty
> well. ;)
> In other news, some more ideas:
> - I believe there's a "comply or explain" policy in The Netherlands.
> I believe that's not working out very great in practice, but at
> least it's an argument you can use, right?
> - Is there any other national or European policy regarding free
> software and open standards we can point to?
> - Do we have big shiny examples we can point to? So we can say "they
> did it and it's working great for them, so why wouldn't you do the
> same?".
> [1] http://fsfe.org/about/basics/freesoftware.en.html
> [2] http://fsfe.org/campaigns/pdfreaders/
> Regards,
> Sam Geeraerts
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   Overall i'm delighted you all join in on this action. If we need to
   arange more access to to etherpad just send me a mail.
   Lets make this summer hotter, we earn it and the weater just gave up
   On the topic of SVN it 's all explained here:
   http://wiki.fsfe.org/FellowshipHacks/Subversion , i hink we have
   access dunno if its write access. Rainer can you answer this please?
Mark Lamers
email: mark at marklamers.nl
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