[Board] FOSS, OSGeo, FOSS4G and OSGeoLive 13

Jody Garnett jody.garnett at gmail.com
Mon Aug 19 19:52:06 PDT 2019

Thanks Brian, I take every opportunity to promote open source and free
software (indeed I have an incubation committee presentation on just this

I also would ask that we keep in min the *extra* that OSGeo demands of our
own projects:
* Community Projects: be in a position to accept contributions
* OSGeo Projects: actually establish some form of open governance so
additional parties can take part as equal partners

Aside: I cannot tell from your description if OSGeoLive tagline needs to
change? Is the trouble that "Free Software" is not mentioned in the
tagline/ Should it be "OSGeo Live - Open Source Geospatial Foundation Linux
Distribution" or just "OSGeo Live - Linux for Mapping"
Jody Garnett

On Mon, 19 Aug 2019 at 08:54, Brian M Hamlin <maplabs at light42.com> wrote:

> Dear Board of OSGeo, Project Steering Committee members, stakeholders, all
> --
>   *FOSS4G 2019* in Bucarest, Romania (one week from today) shows many,
> very positive signs, in particular for OSGeo dot org.  FOSS4G 2019 is a
> renewed opportunity for OSGeo dot org to build recognition and respect
> among a crowded and often competitive tech foundation world.
>   The spotlight is ready to shine on OSGeo dot org, and I ask the Board
> and stakeholders, to *renew their commitments* to support *both* the *OSI*
> definition of Free Software and also, the *GPL* in its various forms
> [0].
>  In the OSGeoLive Overview Presentation, the opening slide says :
>   "OSGeoLive -- an Open Source, Geospatial GNU/Linux Distribution"
> (it may be that there are legal assertions by the GNU / Free Software
> Foundation that affect this wording)  This line could be misunderstood to
> say, that OSGeoLive is a GPL project (!)  In contrast, the Debian project
> -- ironically not recognized by the Free Software Foundation [1] -- has
> very strict rules on publication contents, which are not always friendly to
> some OSI definitions. The contents and inclusion guidelines for OSGeoLive
> are *not the same *as the Debian project [2].
>   I believe that there is wide agreement within OSGeo dot org community
> that both GPL and OSI definitions of software license have their places,
> and that it is worthwhile to make sure that partners and critics know that
> both approaches have a long-term support with OSGeo, and on OSGeoLive Linux.
>   thanks and best regards from Berkeley, California        --Brian M Hamlin
> [0] OSS is typically defined as software that can be accessed, used,
> modified, and shared by anyone. OSS is often distributed under licenses
> that comply with the definition of “Open Source” provided by the Open
> Source Initiative <https://opensource.org/osd> or meet the definition of
> “Free Software” provided by the Free Software Foundation
> <https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.html>.
> [1] https://www.gnu.org/distros/free-distros.en.html
> [2] https://www.debian.org/doc/debian-policy/
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