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Re: OSI affiliation

On Wed, 15 Feb 2012 14:36:21 +0100, Stefano Zacchiroli <zack@debian.org> wrote:
> On Tue, Feb 14, 2012 at 10:06:56PM +0000, MJ Ray wrote:
> > I would be disappointed if this happened.  The Open Source Initiative
> > failed, for reasons that aren't important at this point - they should
> > belatedly accept that and merge its corporation into SPI or another
> > suitable continuing vehicle, rather than continue as an unseemly
> > zombie organisation with its non-FOSS certification scheme that
> Wow, that's quite a bold paragraph :)
> I'm not sure what you mean with "failed", given that the organization
> exists, has been active recently, and still is considered (ymmv, of
> course) a reputable source for deciding which licenses are Free and
> which are not

The UK government has a consultation paper out right now:


that links to OSI's license list to define what they mean by "open
source licenses", as you can see in the fifth paragraph here:


So whatever we might think about the merits of the "Open Source" term,
it hardly seems like a step forward to render such references into
hanging links just at the point where policy makers are starting to get
the message.

Much better to try to ensure that that licenses list is actually sane,
which is something we may be able to do something about if we affiliate,
whereas at this point it seems unlikely that we'd have any luck either
destroying the OSI or persuading politicians to use terminology we

Cheers, Phil.

P.S. I encourage people to respond to the consultation mentioned above.
It actually looks pretty good.  For example, it seems to be leaning
towards the idea that (F)RAND licensing is nothing that one wants in an
open standard.  I'm not convinced that they've entirely understood the
nuances of Free Software licencing (in that they seem to think that some
licenses insist that one publish modifications, which I think is the
sort of thing that fails our desert island test, and I'm not aware of
any free software licenses that insist that -- they're presumably
misreading the GPL).
|)|  Philip Hands [+44 (0)20 8530 9560]    http://www.hands.com/
|-|  HANDS.COM Ltd.                    http://www.uk.debian.org/
|(|  10 Onslow Gardens, South Woodford, London  E18 1NE  ENGLAND

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