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Old 05-15-2008, 01:43 PM
"Jonathan Roberts"
 
Default Fedora and the world

Hey all,

I'm not sure what people will think of this message, and it is no more
than a very rough discussion starter, but I thought I'd speak up and
see if anybody was interested.

How much consideration does Fedora put into its impact on the wider
world? One specific example might be our servers:

* What are their PSUs like? I know some can be very wasteful while
others incredibly efficient.
* Who are the electricity suppliers for them? Again, some are more
efficient than others, and some will get more from renewable sources
than others. Here in the UK, there are companies who guarantee that
for every unit of energy used, they'll produce one unit from a
renewable source - and they even match your current suppliers rates.

What about where Fedora's accounts are held?

* Many banks will invest in arms companies, sweatshops etc and other
ethically dubious organisations
* Some banks hold an ethical policy where they explicitly state what
kind of projects your money is invested in, and guarantee not to
invest in some groups

What about the impact of FUDCon?

I think we're already heading in a good direction with more FUDCons
being held around the world, but it's something we might want to
consider.

Interested to hear people's thoughts,

Jon

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Old 05-15-2008, 04:57 PM
Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams
 
Default Fedora and the world

On Thu, 2008-05-15 at 14:43 +0100, Jonathan Roberts wrote:
> I'm not sure what people will think of this message, and it is no more
> than a very rough discussion starter, but I thought I'd speak up and
> see if anybody was interested.

> How much consideration does Fedora put into its impact on the wider
> world? One specific example might be our servers:

We can provide the resources for improving power efficiency, but I don't
believe that we should dictate external policies.

> What about where Fedora's accounts are held?

What if a Fedora account is held by someone seeking to overthrow a
government? What if a Fedora account is held by a company seeking to
find a cure for a terminal disease via illegal stem cell research? What
if a Fedora account is held by a vandal? A robber? Someone speaking out
against a religion?

IMO, the Fedora Project MUST maintain an amoral stance on who gets
accounts (within the realm of the laws it's bound by, of course), even
if the members feel otherwise.

--
Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams <ivazqueznet@gmail.com>

PLEASE don't CC me; I'm already subscribed
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Old 05-15-2008, 05:18 PM
"Jeff Spaleta"
 
Default Fedora and the world

On Thu, May 15, 2008 at 8:57 AM, Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams
<ivazqueznet@gmail.com> wrote:
> What if a Fedora account is held by someone seeking to overthrow a
> government? What if a Fedora account is held by a company seeking to
> find a cure for a terminal disease via illegal stem cell research? What
> if a Fedora account is held by a vandal? A robber? Someone speaking out
> against a religion?
>
> IMO, the Fedora Project MUST maintain an amoral stance on who gets
> accounts (within the realm of the laws it's bound by, of course), even
> if the members feel otherwise.

Oh we are talking about FAS accounts.... not the secret monetary bank
accounts that I'm not suppose to know about.

I think FAS usage policy should be as narrow as possible, and account
restrictions and terminations scenarios should be well defined and
limited to things which directly impact the ability for this project
to function without speaking to any larger political agenda. I
certainly wouldn't want to see Fedora policies designed to punish
'bad' behavior outside the scope of Fedora operations. We've got more
than enough political drama internally, thanks.

Now as a project, we might empower the Board to find a way to reward
externally facing behavior. The Fedora Peace Prize? The Fedora Green
Living Initiave? The Fedora Pimped Out Ride Award? With the payoff
for the project being strengthening the awareness of the Fedora brand
and the Fedora mission as a force for social good.

-jef

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Old 05-15-2008, 06:55 PM
"Jonathan Roberts"
 
Default Fedora and the world

2008/5/15 Jeff Spaleta <jspaleta@gmail.com>:
> On Thu, May 15, 2008 at 8:57 AM, Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams
> <ivazqueznet@gmail.com> wrote:
>> What if a Fedora account is held by someone seeking to overthrow a
>> government? What if a Fedora account is held by a company seeking to
>> find a cure for a terminal disease via illegal stem cell research? What
>> if a Fedora account is held by a vandal? A robber? Someone speaking out
>> against a religion?
>>
>> IMO, the Fedora Project MUST maintain an amoral stance on who gets
>> accounts (within the realm of the laws it's bound by, of course), even
>> if the members feel otherwise.
>
> Oh we are talking about FAS accounts.... not the secret monetary bank
> accounts that I'm not suppose to know about.

Lol, well I was talking about bank accounts, but if Fedora has no
money of its own then I guess this isn't a problem!
>
> I think FAS usage policy should be as narrow as possible, and account
> restrictions and terminations scenarios should be well defined and
> limited to things which directly impact the ability for this project
> to function without speaking to any larger political agenda. I
> certainly wouldn't want to see Fedora policies designed to punish
> 'bad' behavior outside the scope of Fedora operations. We've got more
> than enough political drama internally, thanks.
>
> Now as a project, we might empower the Board to find a way to reward
> externally facing behavior. The Fedora Peace Prize? The Fedora Green
> Living Initiave? The Fedora Pimped Out Ride Award? With the payoff
> for the project being strengthening the awareness of the Fedora brand
> and the Fedora mission as a force for social good.

I agree that it would strengthen the Fedora brand, but that shouldn't
be the only reason we would do something like this. IMHO, it's the
right thing to do, and some steps that we could take might be as
simple as thinking carefully about some of the things I suggested in
my first e-mail.

Best,

Jon

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Old 05-15-2008, 06:56 PM
"Jonathan Roberts"
 
Default Fedora and the world

2008/5/15 Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams <ivazqueznet@gmail.com>:
> On Thu, 2008-05-15 at 14:43 +0100, Jonathan Roberts wrote:
>> I'm not sure what people will think of this message, and it is no more
>> than a very rough discussion starter, but I thought I'd speak up and
>> see if anybody was interested.
>
>> How much consideration does Fedora put into its impact on the wider
>> world? One specific example might be our servers:
>
> We can provide the resources for improving power efficiency, but I don't
> believe that we should dictate external policies.

It's not necessarily a matter of dictating external policies but
thinking about who externally we ask to provide us with whatever
services.

Best,

Jon

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Old 05-15-2008, 07:22 PM
"Jeff Spaleta"
 
Default Fedora and the world

On Thu, May 15, 2008 at 10:55 AM, Jonathan Roberts
<jonrob@fedoraproject.org> wrote:
> I agree that it would strengthen the Fedora brand, but that shouldn't
> be the only reason we would do something like this. IMHO, it's the
> right thing to do, and some steps that we could take might be as
> simple as thinking carefully about some of the things I suggested in
> my first e-mail.

Let me suggest that there are an infinite number of 'right' things we
could do with Fedora's brand capital. And I don't think we are in a
position to sustain an effort to do something like crush poverty in
Africa at the moment, because we aren't Bono. We aren't.. we just
aren't. We really don't have the name recognition to be a force that
impacts perception across all possible large scale social issues. Hell
we aren't even in a position of strength to champion women's equality
in the development world as a mechanism towards economic and political
stablization..because we don't have equitable numbers of female
contributors ourselves.

If and when we stand up for something, we are essentially trading on
our brand in an effort to bring attention to the issue. We need to
be clever about which social issues we do champion such that when we
so that over time it adds to our ability to continue doing it.

Now energy consumption, we could definitely take a stand on...because
everything we do as part of this project is essentially working
against the goals of energy conservation at the moment..as is all open
collaborative work being done primarily via the internet. Getting out
in front and taking a stand there, would make some sense... if I cared
at all about the issue. But since I get a check every year which is
tied directly to the price of oil as an Alaskan citizen, I'm all for
people driving Humvees.. and I don't mean the new small ones.. i mean
military grade ones. Though Google's datacentres far outpace our
combined evilness when it comes to energy burnrate.

-jef"FYI, the Simon's movie was dead on about Alaska"spaleta

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Old 05-15-2008, 08:23 PM
Josh Boyer
 
Default Fedora and the world

On Thu, 15 May 2008 19:55:25 +0100
"Jonathan Roberts" <jonrob@fedoraproject.org> wrote:

> 2008/5/15 Jeff Spaleta <jspaleta@gmail.com>:
> > On Thu, May 15, 2008 at 8:57 AM, Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams
> > <ivazqueznet@gmail.com> wrote:
> >> What if a Fedora account is held by someone seeking to overthrow a
> >> government? What if a Fedora account is held by a company seeking to
> >> find a cure for a terminal disease via illegal stem cell research? What
> >> if a Fedora account is held by a vandal? A robber? Someone speaking out
> >> against a religion?
> >>
> >> IMO, the Fedora Project MUST maintain an amoral stance on who gets
> >> accounts (within the realm of the laws it's bound by, of course), even
> >> if the members feel otherwise.
> >
> > Oh we are talking about FAS accounts.... not the secret monetary bank
> > accounts that I'm not suppose to know about.
>
> Lol, well I was talking about bank accounts, but if Fedora has no
> money of its own then I guess this isn't a problem!

As I understand things, Fedora as a project has no monetary control.
The money comes from Red Hat and is held in Red Hat accounts.

There was discussion at long time ago about creating a Fedora
Foundation, however that proved to be not worth the effort.

josh

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Old 05-15-2008, 09:35 PM
"Jonathan Roberts"
 
Default Fedora and the world

2008/5/15 Jeff Spaleta <jspaleta@gmail.com>:
> On Thu, May 15, 2008 at 10:55 AM, Jonathan Roberts
> <jonrob@fedoraproject.org> wrote:
>> I agree that it would strengthen the Fedora brand, but that shouldn't
>> be the only reason we would do something like this. IMHO, it's the
>> right thing to do, and some steps that we could take might be as
>> simple as thinking carefully about some of the things I suggested in
>> my first e-mail.
>
> Let me suggest that there are an infinite number of 'right' things we
> could do with Fedora's brand capital. And I don't think we are in a
> position to sustain an effort to do something like crush poverty in
> Africa at the moment, because we aren't Bono. We aren't.. we just
> aren't. We really don't have the name recognition to be a force that
> impacts perception across all possible large scale social issues. Hell
> we aren't even in a position of strength to champion women's equality
> in the development world as a mechanism towards economic and political
> stablization..because we don't have equitable numbers of female
> contributors ourselves.

I'm not asking us to take a stand that's going to change the status
quo throughout the world based on our brand. I'm not even asking us to
take a stand that's going to reflect positively on our brand - as far
as I'm concerned we could do some simple things, particularly on
energy conservation, that would have a positive impact and tell no-one
about it.

> If and when we stand up for something, we are essentially trading on
> our brand in an effort to bring attention to the issue. We need to
> be clever about which social issues we do champion such that when we
> so that over time it adds to our ability to continue doing it.

I would agree that we should be clever about which issues we actively
link ourselves with, but that doesn't mean to say that we should just
ignore the other issues!

> Now energy consumption, we could definitely take a stand on...because
> everything we do as part of this project is essentially working
> against the goals of energy conservation at the moment..as is all open
> collaborative work being done primarily via the internet. Getting out
> in front and taking a stand there, would make some sense...

Well, I for one think it would be a positive step in the right
direction if we began by looking at what we could do about our energy
consumption. And yes, it would reflect positively on Fedora's brand.

Does anyone else on the list have an opinion?

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Old 05-15-2008, 10:17 PM
"Jeff Spaleta"
 
Default Fedora and the world

On Thu, May 15, 2008 at 12:23 PM, Josh Boyer <jwboyer@gmail.com> wrote:
> As I understand things, Fedora as a project has no monetary control.
> The money comes from Red Hat and is held in Red Hat accounts.

Yes, I have to blackmail Max or Greg or Paul when I want to see a
monies expended on some sort of initiative. Blackmail, sweet-talk or
physically threaten, I'll use which every technique works best for
each one of them.

>
> There was discussion at long time ago about creating a Fedora
> Foundation, however that proved to be not worth the effort.

I think there is a stronger statement to be made than "not worth the
effort." It's quite possibly impossible to do as a US non-profit when
Red Hat's contributions to the project's actual resource consumption
is tallied given the requirements for non-profit status. And a
separate for-profit status doesn't actually give us much more than
what we have right now, except increased staffing needs to act as a
separate business office.

The real question is, and continues to be, can we carve out a place
inside the current financial structure that we can solicit funds from
other entities beside Red Hat meant directly to be spent of community
initiatives. It's a completely unanswered question, and we won't know
the answer until someone steps forward saying they are willing to drop
money into the hands of the Fedora project, to be dispersed by the
Fedora Board or other entity delegated by the Board, to meet some sort
of objective. Non-profit status is just not going to happen, because
Red Hat is too heavily invested in the day-to-day costs of Fedora
operations to stand Fedora up as an independent entity. If there are
entities out there who would like to give up some funding, I'd very
much like to have a conversation with them as to what conditions would
make them comfortable doing so..that does not involve a non-profit
status.

-jef

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Old 05-15-2008, 10:23 PM
"Stephen John Smoogen"
 
Default Fedora and the world

On Thu, May 15, 2008 at 4:17 PM, Jeff Spaleta <jspaleta@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Thu, May 15, 2008 at 12:23 PM, Josh Boyer <jwboyer@gmail.com> wrote:
>> As I understand things, Fedora as a project has no monetary control.
>> The money comes from Red Hat and is held in Red Hat accounts.
>
> Yes, I have to blackmail Max or Greg or Paul when I want to see a
> monies expended on some sort of initiative. Blackmail, sweet-talk or
> physically threaten, I'll use which every technique works best for
> each one of them.
>
>>
>> There was discussion at long time ago about creating a Fedora
>> Foundation, however that proved to be not worth the effort.
>
> I think there is a stronger statement to be made than "not worth the
> effort." It's quite possibly impossible to do as a US non-profit when
> Red Hat's contributions to the project's actual resource consumption
> is tallied given the requirements for non-profit status. And a
> separate for-profit status doesn't actually give us much more than
> what we have right now, except increased staffing needs to act as a
> separate business office.
>
> The real question is, and continues to be, can we carve out a place
> inside the current financial structure that we can solicit funds from
> other entities beside Red Hat meant directly to be spent of community
> initiatives. It's a completely unanswered question, and we won't know
> the answer until someone steps forward saying they are willing to drop
> money into the hands of the Fedora project, to be dispersed by the
> Fedora Board or other entity delegated by the Board, to meet some sort
> of objective. Non-profit status is just not going to happen, because
> Red Hat is too heavily invested in the day-to-day costs of Fedora
> operations to stand Fedora up as an independent entity. If there are
> entities out there who would like to give up some funding, I'd very
> much like to have a conversation with them as to what conditions would
> make them comfortable doing so..that does not involve a non-profit
> status.
>

Not that I think such entities exist... but I don't see how they can
give funding without dealing with a non-profit organization or Red Hat
were to 'offer' specified services for money with respect to Fedora.
In that case some company could then 'pay' Red Hat for say gcc support
in Fedora or something.. but there has to be some entity that the
organizations would have to do 'business' with.



--
Stephen J Smoogen. -- BSD/GNU/Linux
How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed
in a naughty world. = Shakespeare. "The Merchant of Venice"

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