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Still no titles

There is a discussion going on over at foundation-list about membership of the foundation, which has gotten interesting. There was a good comment from Luis Villa:

[You] assume ‘more members’ == ‘good’, and
I’m not sure I follow that, given that much of the current membership
is apathetic and uninvolved [in the foundation] and increasing the numbers doesn’t actually solve that. I’d prefer we figure out why we have membership (besides the obvious legal/voting reasons), what we offer the membership, and what the membership offers ‘us’ (the community, the foundation, etc.), then talk about having a membership drive if it is still appropriate.

I get what Luis is saying, but I think the problem is more one of perception that reality. It seems to me, when I look around, that lots of people are working on communication, advocacy, marketing and all of the other things that the foundation is supposed to do. The foundation is not the board, after all, even if it’s sometimes easy to think that.

What do you think? What should the foundation represent? What does it represent to you? What’s wrong with it? How can we fix it?

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KDE in Vienna

Congratulations to our freedom-loving brothers and sisters in KDEland on their success – KDE and Debian has been adopted by the city of Vienna as an official supported operating system (with about 5000 client machines expected to switch). A nice win for free software.

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Software patents


The commission can’t come back on this one. The process is a bit twisted, but this is the end of the road. The process is

  1. The commission writes the law
  2. In parallel, the council of ministers and the parliament vote the law, possibly making reccommendations for changes
  3. The commission reviews the reccommendations, and approves or refuses them
  4. The council of ministers votes on the resulting text (or a modified version they agree on by qualified majority)
  5. The resulting text gets sent to the parlianent, where they can accept the text presented, make amendments to it, or reject it as presented. Any modification or rejection requires an absolute majority of MEPs
  6. If they make changes and accept it, the resulting text must be approved by an arbitration committee made up half of MEPs and half of ministers on the council of ministers

We were at the second last stage today, and if the law has been rejected, the only option that the commission now has is to modify the law, and go through the whole process again (the infamous restart requested by JURI some months ago).

Given the completely polarised result of the vote, I’m now wondering whether JURI (which was favourable to the parliament’s position some months ago) rejected all of Rocard’s amendments to polarise the parliament and avoid a dodgy law going through on a split decision.

Fair play to the FFII. I hate to bring it up in our hour of glory, but doesn’t this mean we stay at the current ambiguous “software patents are not allowed, but are granted anyway” situation, though? Wasn’t one of the goals of this law to regularise the situation one way or the other?

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For those of you who don’t know yet (haven’t seen anyone blogging about it), the Live8 concerts are on today. Afterwards, there’s the Long March to G8 going from Mondon to Edinburgh, in time for the G8 meeting on Wednesday.

This is a bunch of people trying to change the world by people power (a bit like us). Worth a mention, worth support. If you can go to the concerts, have a laugh. If not, sign the petition, maybe go to Edinburgh…