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Re: Debian UK (was Re: What the DFSG really says about trademarks)

Philip Hands <phil@hands.com> wrote: [...]
> Ah, so you're drawing a link between DCC, a group who have placed the words
> Debian and Core in their name without considering the obvious consequences,
>  and the group of Debian folks in the UK who have decided that it was
> reasonable to refer to themselves variously as debian-uk (as in the mailing
> list) or more recently, and pretty much solely for the purposes of opening
> a bank account, as "The Debian UK Society".

Well, there's a BIG similarity:
* both took the debian name for business use without consent;

and some differences, including:
* DCC asked its members before counting them as members;
* DCC itself looks loss-making, while DUS aims for break-even;
* DCC probably won't be trading itself (but its members may want to
trade on its name), while DUS is a trading business;
* DUS claims the confusing brand "Debian-UK" as well as its name.

DCC is less of a business than DUS by some measures!

If DUS is solely for the purposes of opening a bank account,
why the blue blazes do you need to have automatic membership
and assert unrequested association with 70+ people?

> [...] The issue of the bank account has
> been discussed since June 2004, and you've contributed to the discussion
> throughout, so claiming that this has been done in a precipitate manner is
> just nonsense.

There was a meeting announced simply as a Pub Meet in
and then afterwards, it was announced in
that all UK DDs are now members of this botched organisation.
What were you thinking, besides "Mmm, beer."?

> The closest you could probably get to claiming that anything has been done
> in the name of The Debian UK Society would be this:
>   http://www.computerworld.dk/usarticles.asp?USArticleID=9894
> in which I was misquoted as having claimed to be "chairman ... of debian"
> (Doh!), and then had my quotes mangled into ungrammatical English *sigh*.

So, the appearance of "Phil Hands (Debian-UK)" on the schedules
at http://www.affs.org.uk/affsac-2005.html was a drunken vision?
(For those who know my past involvement with AFFS, I'd resigned,
didn't organise the conference or that schedule.)

Basically, if DUS keeps calling itself Debian-UK, this is likely
to happen again and again and again. Maybe mistakes, but still
going to be seen as Debian's actions. It's hard to correct errors
in public comments: it's tricky to put toothpaste back in the tube.

Simplest is for DUS not to name itself Debian-UK, however that's done.

> Anyway, so far you seem to be crying in the wilderness about this (unlike
> the DCC issue, which has attracted quite a lot of comment).  This makes me
> wonder at your motives.  Your recent actions don't appear to be
> particularly constructive.

You've not been constructive either ("LaLaLa" indeed!) and I
can't fix your organisation despite you. There's no need to
wonder at my motives. I've written them several times:
1. I want no connection with DUS right now; including
2. I want DUS not to hold my personal details (especially not
the inaccurate personal details it currently uses).

How I see this can go forwards:

a. DUS is repaired minimally, to be opt-in not opt-out, but
your constitution offers no amendment, so I don't see how;

b. willing DUS members reform as something sounder and don't
try to contaminate other developers with their legal toys; or

c. I slowly work through "Not In Our Name"-style tactics.

Best wishes,
MJ Ray (slef), K. Lynn, England, email see http://mjr.towers.org.uk/

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