[Ubuntu-US-CA] Freenode

Grant Bowman grantbow at gmail.com
Sat Mar 28 17:19:11 UTC 2009

I will try to keep this brief and to the point.  This message has been
cross posted to several lists which will explain why you might get
more than one copy.  I hope you find it informative too.  Send all
flames to me, not to the lists.

I'm taking off the other hats I wear for a moment to ask for you or
your company's support of Freenode [1] (technically the Peer-Directed
Projects Center or PDPC) now based in the United Kingdom.  For those
that don't know, Freenode is an IRC [2] network supporting Open Source
and Free Software communities globally.  Another PDPC activity is the
annual FOSSCON conference in the fall.  PDPC is specifically [3]
raising funds in order to be recognized by the UK as an official
charitable organization.  This status has many benefits, however they
need to raise a certain amount of money by March, 2009.  There are
just a few days left in the fundraising campaign.

Canonical Ltd. (the company created by Mark Shuttleworth that drives
Ubuntu Linux) has graciously stepped forward to provide dollar for
dollar matching, magnifying the impact of your donations to PDPC.  The
fund raising goal has almost been reached but your contribution is
needed.  Brainstorming by the PDPC board of directors for how to use
any funds not used for operations includes hosting live conference
events in Europe and the US, extending current services and improving
the reliability of the freenode network by hosting a few of their own
hubs and backup systems.  Freenode is growing rapidly [4] supporting
up to 57,000 concurrent users up from a maximum of about 40,000 18
months ago.

Some people may not be aware that IRC is used by a huge array of Open
Source and Free Software projects.  The list of groups [5] Freenode
works with is truly impressive.  I feel it is not at all hyperbole to
say that the work done over freenode and OFTC [6] are the real-time
backbone of open source collaboration throughout the world,  Coders
use the IRC network to develop applications used by millions of people
every day and provide *end user support*.  If you use any open source
software you may be an indirect beneficiary of the services Freenode
provides.  I encourage those who are interested to try launching an
IRC client such as Pidgin [7] and see for yourself.  You won't be
sorry you did.

While I have used Freenode for many years, this year I too became a
contributor for the first time.  For a one time contribution
http://freenode.net/pdpc_donations.shtml of as little as $8 you can
join me in supporting supporting Freenode and the many Open Source
projects they serve.

Thanks for your consideration,

-- Grant Bowman                                   <grantbow at gmail.com>

[1] http://freenode.net/pdpc_donations.shtml

[2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Relay_Chat is a form of
group instant messaging first used in 1988.  Related sites include
http://www.irchelp.org/ and http://www.irc.org/

[3] http://blog.freenode.net/2008/10/fundraising-for-charity-status/

[4] http://freenode.net/history.shtml also http://searchirc.com/network/Freenode

[5] http://freenode.net/primary_groups.shtml include the Apache
Software Foundation, Canonical Ltd (Ubuntu), Creative Commons
Corporation, Free Software Foundation (GNU Project), Mozilla
Foundation (Firefox), MySQL AB, NetBSD Foundation, Open Darwin
Foundation (Apple builds OSX using Darwin), OpenOffice.org, Red Hat,
Inc. & the World Wide Web Consortium among others.

[6] OFTC is a a similar but much smaller IRC network.  See "Freenode
and OFTC IRC networks buddy up", May 2007
http://www.linux.com/articles/62098 also

[7] http://pidgin.im is an IRC client that runs on Windows, Mac and
Linux formerly named Gaim.  http://www.mirc.com/ is also popular on
the Windows platform.

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