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Re: Debian joining OASIS?

My (independent) two cents. I think Mark has summarized things pretty well.

/ Mark Johnson <mrj@debian.org> was heard to say:
| On Monday, March 11, Vince Mulhollon wrote:
|> Could you explain what OASIS provides at a true cost of more than $1000 per
|> member?  After a glance at their website, it appears they discuss documents
|> and then publish them.
| True, but the documents are specifications, rather than the onerous
| ramblings of a sleep-deprived hack like myself.
| I realize their mission may seem kind of vague. So here's a go at it:
|   OASIS is a standards organization, mainly. Mostly they create
|   specifications having something to do with XML, like DocBook.

DocBook is a good example of an OASIS Standard (IMHO) but a quick
survey of the TC landscape shows there's a lot more breadth than just
documentation hackery. There's a lot of electronic commerce stuff
(ebXML, UBL, etc.), some Topic Maps stuff, some Web Services stuff and
even more vertical stuff. Mostly more vertical things than horizontal
things, but that's a very rough characterization.

|   On the other hand, it would literally give Debian an official voice
|   in whatever OASIS specification project debian developers
|   participate. And they can join any project they wish. (I think.) At
|   no additional charge: the $1000 covers _every_ member of the Debian
|   project.

Right. So there are two clear distinctions:

1. If Debian joins (as an organization) all of the members of Debian
get in and can join any TC they want, create TCs, etc. Otherwise, each
individual has to pony up their own $250 individual membership.

2. At the committee level, there's no difference between individual
members and organizational members. If Mark joins as an individual, he
gets the same rights within the DocBook TC as everyone else on the TC.

But when it comes time to advance a Committee Specification to an
OASIS Standard, only member organizations, not individual members, get
to vote. If more than 10% vote no (or less than 10% vote yes), the
specification does not become a Standard.

So, Debian as an organization would have more clout. Is that clout
worth $1000? I really don't know.

                                        Be seeing you,

Norman Walsh <ndw@nwalsh.com> | If today was a fish, I'd throw it back
http://nwalsh.com/            | in.

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