[Linux-aus] Organizing an Australian Open Source Roadshow?

linux-aus at amos.mailshell.com linux-aus at amos.mailshell.com
Thu Jan 29 15:33:02 UTC 2004

Stewart Smith wrote:
> On Thu, 2004-01-29 at 12:55, Ryan Verner wrote:
>>Agreed entirely, but that 'other face' does need to be distinctly 
>>unique from the other body.  Where does LA stand though; are we 
>>focussing on the developer community, on the user/corporate community, 
>>or both?
> Our trend has been to focus on our members - the majority of which is
> the technical community. This does not mean that things for non-tech

Wouldn't you consider raising FOSS awareness in businesses and
government to be an interest of the members of LA? (OK, you can say
that that's why LA will be involved in the new organization, but that
by itself doesn't look like a reason to take that activity outside

> people/groups are a bad thing - but we do have to focus on those people
> who fund us (through the conf) - i.e. what they want and what will
> service them.
> Having the separate face could be useful in some situations, but could,
> on the other hand, just create yet another bunch of admin tasks that
> need to be done. I'd love comment from industry people about this.

What worries me about the "too many organizations" situation is that
I try to imagine people who don't know FOSS trying to find out
about it - where should they look for answers? which one of this
organizations soup is qualified to give them an answer to their

At least, even if you insist on creating a separate organization to
cater for the government, try to market some "Australia FOSS information
centre" where anyone with questions about FOSS can start digging about
it. Try to raise awareness about this "single point of contact", even
if all it does is to route people to the right place.

Here in Israel, there are more and more articles about open source
in the media every day and until very recently we only saw "Microsoft's
response is..." or "SCO claims..." without a "Open Source community's
response..." to counter it, so a year ago some people setup an
organization with a charter to promote open-source in general which
managed to some extent to educate the media and even parliament
sub-committees (by "cold calling" and other activities) to contact it
when they want to hear what "open source community would have to say
about X". They don't pretend to speak on behalf of the entire community,
of course, but the bottom line is that now you hear "the open source
side of the story" much more in the media and other places (I'm talking
about "Hamakor", if anyone is interested, though most of its stuff is in
Hebrew, http://www.hamakor.org.il/english.html).

> IMHO spending some energy on a roadshow and encouraging people to get
> involved would benefit our community (through more work, greater
> exposure etc).

I'd volunteer for that, but can't afford another ticket to Oz right


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