OpenSpace use.info at gmail.com
Sat Jul 18 01:30:49 PDT 2009

I think this should go to the list, and not to me personally.

2009/7/18 Raj Mathur <raju at linux-delhi.org>

> On Saturday 18 Jul 2009, OpenSpace wrote:
> > [snip]
> > What you are saying in essence is that The Free and Open Source
> > Software Community be a Closed Cabal with Limited Disclosure when it
> > comes to its own functioning, and sit on a moral high horse regarding
> > closed proprietary systems?
> Please don't put words into my mouth -- that is not what I said at all.
I sincerely apologise. I thought it was clear (because I mentioned 'in
essence') that it was my understanding. It is not my intention to put words
into your mouth. Could you please state your position in about a sentence or
two? sort of twitter it?

> My meaning was very clear from the example I gave, and if you'd like to
> discuss that I'd be more than glad to;

You mention a working group, that will, at its discretion, share information
with others--yet represent and negotiate on behalf of the community.. That
to me is a closed cabal. And yes, APEX is a misnomer. Closed cabal fits it
better than working group.

> discussing a position that you
> attribute to me, on the other hand, is non-productive for me, and I have
> tons of other, more interesting non-productive activities to indulge in
> before this one comes to the top of the list.
Good to know you have at least some interesting and non-productive
activities. But I don't see how it is relevant here. I see my involvement
here as interesting and productive.

> > Have confidence in openness and transparency... it is powerful, and
> > more important, it works!
> I'm afraid that there will always be information passed in confidence to
> FOSSCOMM members, and if I have a choice between breaking a trust given
> to me by a friend and adhering to the principles of openness and
> transparency, guess which one will prevail?

I suggest that you be afraid, very afraid, of 'friends' who pass on
'information' to you and ask you to keep it confidential. It only gives you
a sense of being an 'insider' having 'privileged' information, but in
reality makes you impotent, depriving you of your ability to act.

We do not live in a world where shadows, cloaks and daggers will always
prevail. A lot can be accomplished without revealing the source of
information... and indeed, even journalists do publish 'confidential'
information without revealing the source. So if you want to keep the source
and the information confidential, then how does it benefit anyone? Keeping
both confidential will also mean that you cannot act on it--because acting
on it will ensure that 'the dark forces' will know you have the information
and then trace your source.

Yes, I would consider breaking trust--of disclosing the source--as
unacceptable. But whistleblowers give information so that it is put in the
public domain and someone would act on it. So I really don't see the need
for the closed cabal that has privileged information.

> Regards,

If I have misunderstood your position, and the written language is a
limiting factor, I am willing to have a discussion with you when I come to
Delhi next (or when you come to Bangalore) .... if it will be interesting
(though non-productive) for you. :-))

Do let me know if you are open to having such a discussion. If you prefer,
we could even call over some fosscomm friends so that we evolve this bottom
up, and then continue this discussion on list.

With best wishes,

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