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Re: Fund raising advertisement on the DPN (Was: [Publicity-commits] r2683 - /dpn/en/current/index.wml)

On Oct 12, 2011, at 06:05, David Prévot wrote:

> Hash: SHA256
> Le 11/10/2011 05:24, Stefano Zacchiroli a écrit :
>> So, by all means, I encourage the people regularly doing DPN to decide
>> on these matters,
> Thanks, so let's try to settle something clear enough, in order to add
> it to the appropriate wiki page.
>> but it would be nice to distinguish two separate
>> judgements. One on whether entries written as *advertisements* are
>> welcome or not.
> It seems consensual in the thread that advertisements are not welcome at
> all.

I do not see the consensus you describe, specifically around the area of what is considered "advertising," though I think we've started in that direction with your policy proposal.

> Informing about fund raising activities for non profit organization,
> gathered to pay hardware, transportation or venue (but not gift or
> salary) could be acceptable, but should be strongly Debian related (i.e.
> about Debian money), and shouldn't be use frequently (e.g. no more than
> once a year).

I don't agree that mentions of things like DebConf funding and/or sponsorship should be limited to once a year. I don't understand the use of limiting mentions of DebConf planning - either the snippet in DPN is advertising or it isn't - that should be the criteria. If it isn't advertising then let people write about it, if it is advertising, why publish it at all?

> So I propose the following policy:
> *The DPN do not inform about fund raising initiative*

My suggestion: "The Debian Project News does not publish commercial material that has no relation to the Debian Project."

> The following exception tries to reflect our current usage:
> Once a year, mentioning the possibility to sponsor Debian (e.g. via its
> DebConf event) is acceptable (but not mandatory).

I object on two grounds;

1. If something is obviously commercial, it should not get mentioned, not even once.
2. If something is obviously non-commercial, and related to Debian, it should not be arbitrarily limited to only one published instance.
> If we want to make things crystal clear, we could drop the exception:
> DebConf has other ways to inform about sponsorship (e.g. specific press
> announcement).

This is sort of like saying we don't need the Debian Project News because there are other news sources. If that is true then why are we publishing the DPN at all? If it's not true why not mention sponsorship of DebConf in DPN?
> What do other regular editors of the DPN think about this proposal?

I think it is an earnest, well-intentioned effort to craft useful policy and I welcome this as I imagine a lot of users of Debian might. I am very concerned that the goal here is to remove all talk of "money stuff" and that appears to be motivated by a particular relationship to money more than a particular relationship to the Debian Project. 

No one person or project should use Debian's volunteer time, servers, software or other tools and/or assets for individual commercial gain. This reasonable request needs to be balanced with the practical realities of a world currently dominated by capital which imposes upon Debian various commercial agreements for the project to function at all. It would be negative if important and worthwhile initiatives like DebConf were prevented from even discussing their commercial arrangements due to an over-zealous DPN editorial policy.



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