Reasons to join SPI...

Dale E Martin dmartin at
Mon Oct 29 17:48:09 UTC 2001

> What should SPI be doing to further the goals of free software?
> Look around the 'net today.
> DMCA and other legistations are threatening freedoms that we hold dear.
> What could/should we be doing about this?  If people want to work on
> this issue, they could do so under the SPI umbrella.
> Cryptography and privacy regulations can use work.  The legislators who
> make the laws aren't necessarily the most informed on the new
> technologies and their uses.  How can we educate them and help them
> understand the technologies so that they can pass better laws?

I think to approach this (in the US) SPI could try to get in a position to
hire a lobbiest.  I've been thinking that this is probably a good time for
some Free Software organization to start working with the system on this
level, and I think SPI might be a great organization to do it.

[snipped your other comments, I think they all apply but I think I'm most
interested in the political/social change issues that SPI could address.]
> SPI without a membership is just a legal framework for Debian, but with a
> membership it becomes an organization that can attempt to move on issues
> that are key to the development of the 'net.  This is also why the
> membership is important: SPI without a membership (and just a board of
> directors) may not always reflect the concerns of the community.  With a
> membership, SPI becomes a _representation_ of the community, and can
> involve itself in issues that decide the future of that very community.

And can work within the current system to affect a change.  I personally
feel that governments all over the world should be changing to Free
Software for all of their needs.  It "only makes sense" on many levels.
Here in the US for that to happen I think we need a lobby to make it happen. 

> I'm hoping that spi-general will become a sounding board for the memebrs
> and others in the community, and that the issues brought up there will
> drive SPI to action.

I'm trying to provide my own input here.  I'm sure the US slant will spark
some more discussion, which would be great.
Dale E. Martin, Clifton Labs, Inc.
Senior Computer Engineer
dmartin at
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