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Re: [Gnustep-marketing] GNUstep Foundation

From: MJ Ray
Subject: Re: [Gnustep-marketing] GNUstep Foundation
Date: Sat, 02 Oct 2004 01:06:34 +0100

On 2004-10-02 00:07:32 +0100 Gregory John Casamento <address@hidden> wrote:

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.

On the control, I broadly agree with you. If it's not possible for the GNUstep maintainers to direct funding in a similar way to they direct code, FSF is probably not my favourite donation collector. I think they may be willing to do so, if they trust that Adam is doing the best for the project and they may well trust him, as they've not removed him yet. Needs an answer from them to know, though.

On the specific "FSF can say no" problem, I disagree. FSF's leaders are pretty wise and experienced, so if they are willing to have hordes of GNUstep maintainers annoyed with them, they may have good reasons for refusing. I know I disagree with them on a few small issues (FDL and drafting processes), but they are mostly consistent and decent.

The other problem hinted at by some messages (not yours IIRC) is "FSF can spend our money on anything". As I wrote, if US law is similar, donations made for a particular purpose cannot be spent on other things. Is that similar? Without it, I would be uncomfortable with FSF collecting GNUstep funds.

Do you have some problems with FSF that you have not disclosed?

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

I think this is a bit different to that case. With the maintainer's consent, you hope to set up something which looks like a branch of the project. If someone set up a company called "GNUstep" then I would normally expect some accusations of passing off, trying to take credit for the work of others.

Will the chief maintainer necessarily have any role in the foundation?

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:

I know what you mean. It is at odds with the posts of others. I think it may even disagree with your own methods for the foundation. By placing work contracts and commissions, it will be dictating what happens in the project.

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....

You had not got as far as any plans or notes? I overestimated how much you had considered it, for which I apologise. I felt that you were holding out on us, like a mystic.

Who would tell the GNUstep Foundation what is needed? How?
The maintainers and the community.

Can Proprietary Bogey Corp label itself part of our community and take over the foundation?

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.

From what are you concluding that they couldn't care less?

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).

Can you throw me references to past explanations of these, so I don't ask you to repeat, please?

By the way, in addition to previously posted experience with not-for-profits, I also run a corporation and previously co-directed a limited company.

[...] I, however, simply feel that
we should discuss all options before just jumping at one or the other.

Great! I'm glad we agree on this.

Most everything else was discussed in my reply to Alex Perez. Thanks for your answers.

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

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