[ubuntu-us-ma] Is Ubuntu-centricity holding us back?

Martin Owens doctormo at gmail.com
Fri Apr 23 22:04:38 BST 2010

Hey Danny,

It's true that the design team has been a bit of a community bully. But
we've been having words with them and this will continue into UDS where
I'm hoping that their want to get involved with the community will bare

What we'd loose is the ability to ask for Canonical resources, we
wouldn't get any pressed disks at all. It might be hard to get people
down from the Lexington office, but then again as you say there are
bigger offices for other FOSS people and other universities that'd be
more interested in non-Ubuntu collaborations.

but what we'd gain is the ability to do more events for different FOSS
products. I'd also if we went down that path to be more on the FOSS side
of things and not so much the FSF or OSI side of things which tends to
be brutally inconsiderate of normal users on both accounts.


On Fri, 2010-04-23 at 16:59 -0400, Danny Piccirillo wrote:
> For a while now, i've been thinking about the possibility of ending
> our Ubuntu-centricity. The community is Ubuntu's greatest strength,
> yet the community isn't being listened to. More importantly though, i
> think it is a huge disservice to the greater Free Software (aka Open
> Source) ecosystem to have one of the strongest global network of
> advocates to be banded around one distribution. I'd like to propose
> that we become a general Free Software team, and recommend that the
> rest of the LoCo's do the same. 
> I can't even think of any pros to being an Ubuntu-only team. Having
> one OS to promote may make certain advocacy easier, but there's no
> reason why a general team couldn't make the decision to primarily
> support Ubuntu in most cases. As an official LoCo, we get freebies
> from Canonical, but i don't think this is a very big deal. We can make
> our own CDs and i'm sure if we were doing worthy projects, Canonical
> would still be willing to provide us with CDs, as it would be in their
> interest. 
> Now, a few of the cons: 
>       * Lack of community input for major decisions and arrogance
>         among those in charge
>       * Lack of support for educational events, and it's not hard to
>         see why since Canonical may endanger their own educational
>         services revenue if they helped out more.
>       * Alienate the many many non-Ubuntu members of the Free Software
>         community
>       * Being exclusive to Ubuntu makes it hard to reach out to a
>         wider audience of people with varying levels of interest from
>         beginners to hardcore computer people
>       * We're doing a disservice to the rest of the community by only
>         acknowledging one free desktop OS
> I think what we are united around, more so than an OS which, to be
> frank, i don't feel any loyalty towards, is ideals. Yes, i'm sure at
> least one person is thinking that they just care about what tools
> work, but let's not forget to thank the ideals that made these better
> tools possible. I think most of us imagine a world where these ideals
> are universal, and see an incredible amount of potential in that. 
> If this idea is well-received, we could either just do our own thing
> or use LibrePlanet which is a network that already exists and would be
> easy to move to. I understand some people have some badly tainted
> perceptions of the FSF, but i would have no problem being a part of
> their extended network. Either way, the more i think about it, the
> more i do think it is appropriate for LoCo's to abandon their
> exclusive-to-Ubuntu nature. 
> I'm sure you can think of other good reasons as well. We would be
> giving up our Ubuntu exclusivity, but not abandoning Ubuntu. It seems
> this could make our job easier, benefit the greater FLOSS community,
> and still have no significant disadvantage for Ubuntu. 
> Thoughts? 
> -- 
> .danny
> ☮♥Ⓐ - http://www.google.com/profiles/danny.piccirillo
> Every (in)decision matters. 

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