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Re: feeling intimidated for endorsing the GNU social contract

From: Jean Louis
Subject: Re: feeling intimidated for endorsing the GNU social contract
Date: Wed, 4 Mar 2020 21:33:24 +0300
User-agent: Mutt/1.10.1 (2018-07-13)

* Mark Wielaard <> [2020-02-29 02:39]:
> Of course the FSF is involved in GNU governance. They raise money in
> the name of GNU, we assign copyright to the FSF, they hold all our
> assets, and they keep lists of people who may use those resources for
> which purposes.

First there was RMS, then GNU, then FSF.

Raising money in the name of GNU is quite welcome by anybody, you are
also free to raise money in the name of GNU, why not, GNU project will
gladly accept donations. That does not relate to any governance.

Assigning copyrights to FSF is quite a good protection that is
expected to last over longer periods of time. Foundations as FSF are
founded for the reason to carry on in the future and ensure the
financial existence of various projects. There is nothing wrong that
any type of foundation holds funds for GNU and financially supports
GNU and any other free software. This alone does not speak or relate
to any governance by definition. In fact, me or you, we could setup a
foundation for the same purpose and collect funds for GNU, but we do
not govern it.

Holding "all assets" is also similar, it is and may not be
"governance". Foundations are registered for exactly such purposes to
hold assets, so that assets are not in personal name. Normally,
foundations have control over assets, however, that is up to the
founder to decide what type of control is given to the
foundation. That still does not say nor automatically assign
governance of GNU to the FSF. It is obvious from both websites that
FSF does not govern GNU project, so your statements lack some legal

Keeping a list of people means not that organization is governing
something else, like GNU, but only the list in question.

I have 26 employees currently, each of them is having their tools,
uniforms, and they govern what they were given to govern, exactly
those specific tools and uniforms, and that is all by my decision, so
that does not make those people "govern" the business.

> The FSF is the legal entity which runs GNU.


> We should coordinate governance issues with the FSF.

Ha ha ha.

Number one, if you are not voting member in the FSF, there is nothing
to say for FSF. If you are not on board, there is nothing to say or
demand, it is private foundation, not public.

Number two, both GNU and FSF are private projects. Your attempts are
not legitimate.

> There are lots of issues which are the shared responsibility of GNU
> volunteers and the FSF.

Responsibility and control are related but not same. You may have
responsibility and promote GNU and free software in your own area. I
am doing it myself in my specific area. Thus responsibility is always
free to take and to conduct.

> Given that GNU is a program of the FSF I do think they have such a
> responsibility to all GNU volunteers.


First there was RMS, then GNU, then FSF.

RMS have founded FSF for the financial survival and promotion of free

GNU is not a program of the FSF, just as the father cannot be the son
of his own son. It is not logical.

First there was RMS, then GNU, then FSF.

> The FSF encourages adopting an anti-harassment guide and I think we
> should take that much more serious:

Harassment is in many countries illegal, feel free to use the legal
recourses if you feel harassed.

In many civilized countries it is also illegal to accuse a person of
harassment if it was not the case, as that may amount to defamation,
and various other illegal acts.


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