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[Fsfe-france] Re: Software Patents Agenda

From: PILCH Hartmut
Subject: [Fsfe-france] Re: Software Patents Agenda
Date: Mon, 14 May 2001 22:14:43 +0200 (CEST)

>       From what I understand address@hidden has a private archive.
> I'd rather discuss this in public (on the aful mailing list for instance)
> so that potential contributors learn from it.

You can summarise the discussions and write a webpage from them.

>       How to get involved ?
>       - Send a letter to your government officials to explain in your
>         own words why you're not in favor of the legalization
>         of software patents in Europe.
>       - Get an appointment with European Commission officials, bring
>         them documents explaining why software patents are bad.
>         (there should really be a lobbying howto on this, it's complex)
>       - Sign the petition
>       - Send information and pointers about your government positions
>         on software patents to (what is the prefered, public, europe
>         wide mailing list ?)
>       - Help building and maintaining the web site petition.eurolinux.org.
>         In order to do this, propose a change or update to
>         address@hidden It will be integrated by
>         someone. If you plan to contribute on a regular basis you will
>         be given a Zope account to do the updates yourself.

There was a page with a similar content, but the person who worked on it
has quit.   I hope we can resume it soon.

>       On the FSF Europe web site specific side, I'll write something
> like:
>         Most of the information displayed on the FSF Europe web
>         pages related to software patents is mirrored from
>         petition.eurolinux.org. There are many reasons for this.
>         Although petition.eurolinux.org is a misleading name, it is

The Eurolinux Alliance is a group of proprietary software companies and
the free software community in which each plays its part.  It is open for
associations of various kind, with the common goal of promoting open
standards, open sources and a vigorous software culture in which free and
proprietary software can fulfill their functions peacefully.  "Linux" is a
buzzword that conveys much of this concept.

The concept has proven quite successful, and there is nothing "misleading"
about the term "Eurolinux". FSFE could become a member of the alliance.

>         a very active web site that gathers most of the information
>         and actions related to the software patents problem in
>         europe. The FSF Europe acknowledge this fact by contributing
>         to it and using it as a central repository instead of
>         duplicating their effort. Another reason is that it's the
>         only europe wide initiative that successfully gather
>         numerous individuals and companies who are willing to stop
>         software patents in europe. The FSF Europe is building a
>         european network that will be benificial and will make every
>         effort to contribute its resources to
>         petition.eurolinux.org. In short, the FSF Europe applies
>         the rule of cooperating and sharing instead of duplicating
>         and being secret.

That could give people the impression that there is a serious conflict
between FSFE and the Eurolinux Alliance.  People like to read between the
lines.  So I'd rather not write such a thing.

>       This gives you the spirit in which I'm working and it also
> triggers a few questions.
>       - Will petition.eurolinux.org agree that www.fsfeurope.org mirrors
>         some of its content ? I see no copyright notice allowing this,
>         therefore I have to ask. This content could also be available
>         on the LPF web site or any another web site.

I don't think mirroring is a good idea, except for documentation purposes,
as done under


where a lot of swpat related sites and pages are mirrored.

The normal way to go is linking, not mirroring.

>       - The FSF Europe is willing to contribute to
>         petition.eurolinux.org regardless of the possible disputes
>         related to Free Software vs Open Source or GNU/Linux vs
>         Linux. The software patents problem is above all these
>         considerations and must even include non free software
>         advocates.

I am rather sad to see that you seem to see a problem here. This does not
help building my confidence.  It gives me the impression that your main
might be on "how to get the word Linux out of a name that is enjoying some
public attention".  In that case I would be completely losing my time in
cooperating with you.  I am fed up with this cultural hegemony warfare
within our community.  If this isn't stopped, I am going to change my
habit of saying "free software" and rather say "opensource".  Resisting pc
campaigns and stopping sectarianism is every good citizen's duty.

>         Does petition.eurolinux.org agrees on the principle ?
>         Or is there any reason why petition.eurolinux.org would have
>         a problem working with the FSF Europe ?

We are not "petition.eurolinux.org" but the "Eurolinux Alliance". If that
name is so politically uncorrect that you even have to avoid pronouncing
it, then there are evidently problems between us.  But I think it's your
side that has the problems.  Terminology wars can help you to quickly
attract a fan club and make a lot of noise, you cannot build trust within
a disparate alliance that way.

So let's just start by some real work:

- complementary websites, without mirroring
- joint work on petition.eurolinux.org, if you like

Hartmut Pilch
Federation for a Free Information Infrastructure        http://www.ffii.org/
For a software patent free Europe PLEASE SIGN http://petition.eurolinux.org/

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