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Re: "Why" Debian Core Consortium ? Why not UserLinux? Why not Debian?

<quote who="Branden Robinson / Debian Project Leader" date="Wed, Aug 24, 2005 at 04:18:16PM -0500">
> Just out of curiosity, what interests do you think the DCC Alliance
> has that aren't in ours?  If you don't know, have you asked?

The goal of the project seems to be create a large binary-compatible
core upon which folks can certify their software. Basically, this is
really only useful to proprietary software vendors.

Personally, great proprietary software support and certification is not
something that will make me happier about Debian. It's simply not
something I care about. Of course, I'm in no way opposed to it if it
is done in a way that doesn't hold Debian back from building a great
free platform for free software in the process.

> > I'm pretty unimpressed that the group has already started issuing
> > press releases using Debian's name.
> The name of the project or the name of our OS?  In general, should
> we expect vendors of Debian GNU/Linux-derived operating systems to
> eschew mention of its origin when touting their products?

Let's not confuse things here. There's a big difference between
mentioning that you're Debian-based in a press release and putting
Debian in the name of your product or organization. The difference
here that folks are concerned with is the potential for confusion
around the endorsement or the origin of the product or service. That
doesn't mean that the name can't or shouldn't be used in products or
organizations -- I think SLX Debian Labs has struck a very nice
balance -- but you seem to be implying a dilemma here that I'm not
sure exists.

> At DebConf this year, and in other forums, I have heard criticism of
> Ubuntu (in particular) for not trumpeting its Debian heritage
> "loudly enough".

FWIW, I've also heard people complain that we have unfairly played up
our Debian roots. ;-)

> I consider third parties' derivations of Debian to be flattering to
> our work and our contributors, so if we're going to get offended by
> the way people make such derivations, I think we'd be wise to help
> people understand how to avoid doing so.  The time seems quite ripe
> for Debian Developers concerned about this issue to put their
> shoulders to the wheel, so that the community of our derivers can
> cultivate a better understanding of how to work with us.

Amen Branden on all counts.

It's worth reiterating that there are real benefits to the exposure we
get when people use our name widely. However, these benefits (at least
to us) are weakened when our name stops referring to our project and
our product but to anything. We need to strike that balance and, as
Branden mentioned, could use the help of anyone who wants to get their
hands dirty.


Benjamin Mako Hill

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