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Re: Member distributions and popularity

----- "Noah Meyerhans" <noahm@debian.org> wrote: 

> When Ean suggested borrowing ideas from Eclipse, I don't think he meant 
> charge people to be Debian derivatives (or did you interpret it some 
> other way?) 

Right. I'm more suggesting that we provide an "official derivatives" page in a prominent way on our site. The listing would provide a description of what the dist specializes in (ie. kids, realtime audio, proprietary games, whatever) as well as, perhaps, user ratings or even reviews of the distribution. 

> OTOH, I'm not sure what he suggested. I think we already do quite a 
> good job of working without derivitives. But much of how we work with 
> them depends on how they choose to work with us. If somebody chooses to 
> simply grab our distro, make some changes, and call it their own, we 
> can't stop them. We can, and do, encourage them to work with us. I'm 
> not sure what else we should do. 

That's exactly what I'm driving towards. To get on this list, a distribution would have to follow certain rules. For instance, if you break Debian policy in such a way that major Debian packages won't work on your distribution then you could lose your "official distribution" status. We wouldn't charge for this status. Rather, we would provide a set of guidelines you have to follow to achieve it. Sort of like "Linux Standard Base" but with the difference of being more directly Debian oriented. 

Derivative distributions are not going away. We don't want them to go away. We've even gone to a lot of trouble to make sure its easy to create them. Instead of being sad about "losing users to derivative distributions" we should view the derivatives as part of our installed base and set up some guarantees for users about which ones they can trust. 

For instance... SimplyMEPIS recently went back to a straight Debian core with their own added value stuff on top. They would probably love to have this kind of exposure. 

(sorry if my emails aren't word wrapping in mutt. I'm using zimbra and can't figure out how to get it to wrap.)

Ean Schuessler, CTO Brainfood.com 
ean@brainfood.com - http://www.brainfood.com - 214-720-0700 x 315 

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