Minutes 2001-07-10

Nils Lohner lohner at master.debian.org
Thu Nov 29 15:42:34 UTC 2001

The minutes below have been accepted and approved by the Board of 
Directors of Software in the Public Interest, Inc. at the meeting on
November 26, 2001.

SPI Board Meeting Minutes from July 10, 2001

Nils Lohner
Branden Robinson
Ean Schuessler
Martin (Joey) Schulze
Manoj Srinivastava

ADVOSORS: Ben Collins

VISITORS: Cristoph Lameter

- approve meeting minutes from May 16 meeting (Ean, Wichert)
- OS ctte report (Ean)
... discussion of response to Russell Nelson's email (2001-06-18)
- SPI legal counsel offer (Ben)
- treasurer report (Scott)
... transfer of materials from Darren
... accounts status
... looking into insurance for spi (?)
- LinuxPPC update (Wichert)
- membership report (Nils)
- Board membership voting discussion and/or vote (if needed) (Nils)
- set date for next meeting
- miscellaneous
- discuss powers of the President

Approval of May 16 meeting minutes
Nils proposed a few minor changes to the minutes which were accepted.
The minutes were then approved by the Board.

OS committee report from Ean
OSI has been asking for the opensource.org domain to be transferred to
them from SPI.  Russell Nelson from the OSI Board has written a mail
asking for the transfer, and the SPI Board has rejected a resolution
to transfer the domains in email voting.

Nils proposes to simply respond to Russell by pointing him to the
resolution that was voted down.

Ean has not had much time to look at the issue.  He is writing a short
paper that outlines the current state of affairs for the uninitiated.
It discusses the origin of the Open Source mark and its definition and
tries to outline what we might see as some reasonable requirements for
its ongoing management.  One of the main interests of SPI is to ensure
that Open Source does not stray too far from Free Software, and SPI
wants to see how to best accomplish this.

Ean will commit to getting a white paper and an invitation draft
submitted to the Board list no later than the 21st of July, then we
can review it.

Nils suggested releasing incomplete versions early ('release early,
release often') so that the rest of the Board can comment on the
paper and help Ean write it.

SPI Legal Counsel
The Board discussed the letter to be sent to Chris Rourk to invite him
to be SPI's legal counsel.  Some of the wording was changed after the
discussion, and the letter was approved and sent to Mr. Rourk.

Treasurer Report
Scott McNeil is absent.  So is Darren Benham.  Therefore there is no
treasurer report.  This issue is to be addressed in email.

Wichert has done work on this issue and has talked to Jeff Carr.
Since Wichert is absent most of the discussion will have to take place
on email.

Joey provides some details on the issue:
- head of LinuxPPC is unhappy with the company running the LinuxPPC
  site, etc.
- LinuxPPC consists of two things:
... a) community and linuxppc.org site
... b) sales, etc. from which companies make donations to LinuxPPC
- the request is for SPI to handle donations, etc.

Wichert needs to be involved in this discussion to enable SPI to
decide how to act.

Membership report
Nils says that not much has happened since the last meeting.  Craig
Small has received comments on the site, but has been on vacation and
not able to do much with it.  He said that he should have time to work
on it in the next week.  Martin Michlmayr has also been helping with
the site (feeding patches and comments to Craig and testing) and is
also interested in helping to administer it.

Powers of the President
The Board had a discussion about what the powers of the President
should be.  The intent was to define these powers so that the
President can act quickly in certain situations where such action is

The President and other officers of SPI are responsible for the day to
day operations of the organization and can delegate issues to other
members of the organization as needed.  The Board of directors
oversees the actions of the President.  Major decisions on SPI
policies should be Board decisions.  Issues involving larger sums of
money (greater than ~$US 250.00) and other SPI assets should be
discussed with the Board before being decided on.

Board Membership Voting discussion
Nils had posted some thoughts of how Board elections should work, etc.
after the last meeting

Two questions Nils raised were already answered in the bylaws:

. The directors to be chosen for the ensuing year shall be chosen at
the annual meeting of this organization in the same manner and style
as the officers of this organization and they shall serve for a term
of three years. ...

. Two-thirds of the members of the Board of Directors shall constitute
a quorum and the meetings of the Board of Directors shall be held
regularly on the first of July each year. ...

Branden mentioned that he thought that an attendance policy would be a
good idea to implement.  Others agreed.  Manoj noted that it should
not be too strict since everyone has other engagements as well.

After a discussion, it was decided that the voting discussion is beter
tabled until SPI has a membership.  Shareholder voting systems could
serve as good examples for SPI Board membership voting.

Set date for next meeting
Most people are available on Mondays.  The consensus was to try having
monthly meetings and to keep them short if possible.

The next SPI Board meeting is set for Monday August 6 2001 at 18:00 UTC

Meeting ended Tue Jul 10 20:18:18 UTC 2001

Nils Lohner				E-Mail: president at spi-inc.org
Software in the Public Interest, Inc.   Web: http://www.spi-inc.org

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