[Fsfe-ie] stuff from the past week

Ciaran O'Riordan ciaran at member.fsf.org
Sun Oct 26 23:33:55 CET 2003

On Sun, Oct 26, 2003 at 12:39:39AM +0100, adam beecher wrote:
>  - If an association were to be set up, would it include OSS or be
> FS-specific? (Personally, I'm a bit wary of an FS-specific
> association, it comes across as a little exclusionary and elitist to
> me, plus I think Ireland's size would better suit a catch-all
> association.)

This needs to be stated explicitly:
My intention is to help found an FS org.

I've been researching this for about 18 months, and I'm gonna be
putting a lot of work into it when it happens, so I want to form the
best org, or use my time for something more directly productive.

The worst thing I've seen happen to other orgs is work grinding to a
halt because of committees or members disagreeing over implementation
details.  "OSS vs. FS vs. both", is one time consuming debate.  "both"
leads to many time consuming debates down the line.

Getting work done in a catch-all org is like trying to herd cats.

So, why FS instead of OSS?

OSI approve dodgy licenses like the APSL-1.2 and the RPSL.  I can't
defend these and I'd ask people not to use them.  The man at the helm
of OSI endorses non-OSS projects, defends companies that turn
proprietary, and doesn't release all of his own work under OSS
licenses.  I'm not going to put my spare time into promoting OSS when
it's leader isn't strongly committed to doing the same.  There is no
longer a One True Meaning of OSS.  (we'd be herding cats again.)

I know a lot of staff from FSF, FSFe, and various national european FS
orgs.  Their policies are clearly stated and always adhered to. I have
confidence in these people.  There are rare occasions when I disagree
with FSF.  The only one I can remember is the GNU Free Documentation
License.  But by default, I can trust FSF.  With OSI, I have to read
licenses and research companies to see if claims are genuine.  This
sort of work is a waste of my time.

I'd like to get this all out in public, so please keep this thread
going if you have issues I haven't covered.

>  - There was an (half-hearted) attempt to set up an EFF-like
> organisation a while back, specifically around the time of Karlin's
> revelations on data retention. It didn't go very far because we
> tackled it in a rather disorganised fashion, but I was approached
> about it again recently and I think it's worth another try. I have
> to go to Dublin for various reasons next month, so I'll probably
> call another meeting then to see if we can get things kicked off.

An Irish EFF would be great, there is definitely a need for both
organisations.  I read about that EFF attempt in the
freedom at lists.beecher.net list archives but got no response when I
mailed the guy who seemed to be leading it.

If such a group is being set up, please mention it on this list, and
if you're in Dublin on Nov 13th, it would be great if you could drop
into the fsfe-ie meeting.  Or if Nov 13th is no good, we could hold an
extra meeting if you're interested.

Ciaran O'Riordan - http://www.compsoc.com/~coriordan/

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