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Re: [Gnustep-marketing] GNUstep Foundation

From: Gregory John Casamento
Subject: Re: [Gnustep-marketing] GNUstep Foundation
Date: Fri, 1 Oct 2004 16:07:32 -0700 (PDT)

See below...

--- MJ Ray <address@hidden> wrote:

> On 2004-10-01 14:34:43 +0100 Gregory John Casamento 
> <address@hidden> wrote:
> > [...] You had suggested the FSF run it [...]
> No, I never suggested that the FSF should run a GNUstep Foundation/ 
> Association/ whatever. I suggested that the FSF might be a good 
> foundation to collect and distribute GNUstep donations. I find it 
> incredible that you can misunderstand my post like that.

When I say "run it" I'm referring to the FSF handling the funds instead of a
GNUstep Foundation.  Not running a separate foundation for GNUstep.

> > [...] You are the one arguing for the FSF to run the collection and
> > distribution of funds for GNUstep, albeit at Adam's "say so"... [...]
> s/run/handle/;# Please try not to change my meaning.

Be more clear.  I could also be more clear myself, I'll endeavor to do so.

> > It seems to me
> > that it's better that we are in complete control if the funds 
> > submitted for 
> > the
> > use of GNUstep.   Also, by making it part of the FSF it makes it at 
> > the FSF's
> > sole discretion how the money is used, despite what Adam, myself, or 
> > any of 
> > the other maintainers might want.
> Do we know that it FSF will not agree to handle collection and 
> distribution on the maintainers' behalf?

No we don't because I don't think anyone has asked and perhaps we should.

I'm reluctant to allow the FSF to do this.  I admit that I trust them, but I
don't really want the community to not be in control.   If the FSF manages the
funds for GNUstep then the FSF, not us, are in control of how those funds are
used.  RMS can say no, if he wants, to anything he deems shouldn't be done.  
Nothing personal against RMS. 

> Adam is GNUstep's chief maintainer. Doesn't he have final say on the 
> project, for better or worse?

Yes he does have final say for the project.   He is the Cheif maintainer of
GNUstep and no one is challenging that.   

But, in the same way that Miguel isn't the president of the GNOME Foundation, 
Adam (no offense Adam..) need not be the head of the GNUstep Foundation.  
Additionally, if someone wanted to start a foundation or a company specifically
to support a given project they are free to do so with or without that
project's approval (although it is infinitely nicer to ask).  GNUstep has
several sponsers, see the GNUstep site under "Corporate Developers"
who contribute code and whom I believe also help to promote GNUstep.

> Changing the management structure of GNUstep is yet another different 
> aim to marketing GNUstep. Again, I am not sure what people mean by the 
> GNUstep Foundation.

Hear this now... hear it once... and hear it good as I have mentioned it three
times and this will be the fourth:


Please excuse the all caps, but I have already said it three times previously
and I don't want to say it again.  I am again feeling the urge because I don't
think you'll get it this time either, but we'll see...

> > As I said in a previous post, I've been considering this for a long 
> > time.
> Cool. Explain it.

I already have.  The foundation shall be responsible for collection of funds
for the betterment of GNUstep and to help get the word out.

If I were forced to come up with a business plan in a few minutes, which seems
to be what you're asking....

It will collect funds for the following things:

1) Marketing/Promotion of GNUstep
2) Educational and Documentation materials
3) Commissioning artists to help improve GNUstep icons or the overall look
4) Contracting with an outside company to help code applications or possibly to
help improve the GNUstep code itself.

(#2 wasn't in the previous posting).

> > Because you said "Just to ape GNOME"?  No, we're not "aping" anyone.  
> > Also, I
> > don't consider having a similar name "aping" someone.  I believed you 
> > were
> > implying that we make all of the same mistakes the GNOME Foundation 
> > has 
> > made...
> > which I am opposed to.   You don't like that explaination, tough.
> Oh well. I hear "GNUstep Foundation" and I naturally think of another 
> desktop foundation which started from GNU developers, the GNOME 
> Foundation. In the absence of other information, I will think it is 
> similar and I suspect many other free software users will. At the very 
> least, this hypothesis should be tested before settling on that name. 
> No-one wants a marketing project to have an unmarketable name.

Again... a matter of opinion.

> > For things that the maintainers believe is worth it.   It's been done 
> > before 
> > by
> > the FSF in the case of DGS (Display GhostSctipt) as well as other 
> > things. 
> [...]
> So, the FSF already did this function for us? Who tells them what 
> project need doing? The maintainers of the project or someone else? 
> How?

I'm not sure who told them, but the FSF does this RARELY.  The DGS case is the
only one I know of.   Again... to my previous point...  I don't know how other
developers feel, but I'm not sure I want the FSF to manage the funds for

> Who would tell the GNUstep Foundation what is needed? How?

The maintainers and the community.

> Therefore, is the GNUstep Foundation intended to replace the FSF?

No, to supplement it with people who care more about the project than a few
staffers who couldn't care less.

> > You seem to assume that I haven't investigated this.
> Why shouldn't I? Most people who don't mention their research at all 
> don't have any. Most of my questions are for information you seem to 
> have, but I haven't seen. If you described this before, feel free to 
> reply with a reference.

It's not like I've kept a document somewhere documenting it so I can "point"
you to it.   

Things I have investigated:

1) The fact that the existence of a GNUstep Foundation gives more presence to
the community.
2) I know how to run a company (CLUE: The tagline at the end of my post is not
a made up company, I run a company in Maryland).  I have been a consultant for
a few years and in the industry for almost 15 years.
3) The in/outs of running a not-for-profit company/a Foundation and the
requirements for meeting the criteria with the IRS (here in the US).

Things I have not investigated, but that you seem to want me too:

1) I haven't asked Richard Stallman or the FSF, in general, if they would be
willing to do this.
     * For one thing...  it's not my place to ask this question, it's Adam's. 
     * For another thing...  I have been a contributing member of the Free
Software community for a long time and I haven't seen the FSF ever do this kind
of thing previously except in the one case I told you about.

With Adam's permission, I'd be glad to ask RMS about this.  If the answer is
yes, the community should consider using the FSF.  I, however, simply feel that
we should discuss all options before just jumping at one or the other. 

> > The only organization
> > which would have fit the bill is the FSF and they currently 
> > understaffed and
> > would probably not want to take on the extra responsibility given 
> > that they
> > have not done this FOR ANY OTHER PROJECT EVER except for GNU-Hurd.
> FSF is understaffed, but any GNUstep Foundation is even more 
> understaffed right now. Would likely Foundation staffers be interested 
> in doing GNUstep-related work for FSF? 

Probably true.  However, the FSF is understaffed AND they have their attention
on many different projects.  The GNUstep Foundation wouldn't be understaffed
for long and would only have ONE project to worry about.

> Is that possible? What did the GNU Volunteer Coordinators tell you?

I haven't asked as I indicated above, as I'm fairly sure the answer will be

> FSF have spent money funding GNUstep development. FSF accept donations 
> specifically for the Free Software Directory and GPL Compliance Lab on 
> - Why are these not 
> taking on extra responsibilities for projects other than GNU-Hurd?

I'm not sure.  I see only a few links for some of their projects, but not for
just any project.

> You say "probably" - did you ask them, or are you predicting?

I am, admittedly, predicting based on past behavior. 

> Can you explain why you rejected SPI as a project host?

I'm not sure what you mean here.

> -- 
> MJR/slef    My Opinion Only and not of any group I know
>   Creative copyleft computing -
> village 6+7 Oct


Gregory John Casamento 
-- CEO/President Open Logic Corp. (A Maryland Corporation)
#### Maintainer of Gorm for GNUstep.

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