[Foundation] membership, money, and meritocracy

Jeffrey Ricker ricker at trans-enterprise.com
Thu Apr 3 20:35:18 CST 2003


1. I agree with Johannes in that the mere mention of a fee makes me 
angry, and I am one of those commercial f--ers that just joined JSF. I 
will make the point again: Eclipse has the biggest software companies in 
the world, and when it mentioned a fee it was flatly, vehemently rejected.

2. If you require fees then you are, by definition, NOT a meritocracy. 
You are instead an oligarchy, or perhaps someone can find a better word. 
Where is the merit in a fee? And what good are merits if you haven't the 
money for the fee?

3. Exchange of money requires accountability, and accountability 
requires infrastructure. Where is this infrastructure? Will the money go 
entirely to fund the accountability infrastructure and leave nothing 
left  for the original mission. (That is absolute beauty of bureaucray. 
Say! Maybe that was the word I was looking for.) Peter stated that the 
objective was:  "Enough money to pursue important opportunities." Here 
is cracking the lid to Pandora's box:

- What opportunities?
- How are they important?
- How are they prioritized, that is, who determines which are more 
important and how?
- More important to whom? Who determines who determines priority?
- How much is enough money?
- Who will write the check?
- Who will make sure the money was spent on the right things?
- What if there is a disagreement on what should be spent and where?
- How do you assure that the opportunities benefit all the members equally?
- Who out there is really reading this, anyway?

4. So what is the objective here?
    a. Make XMPP and Jabber a ubiquitous and beneficial part of the 
Internet infrastructure like HTTP/Apache and SMTP/SendMail before it?
    b. Let some people play "I'm important" with other people's money?

5. Go back to basics. What is the purpose of JSF? Eric Raymond said that 
open-source projects get started because so one had an itch to scratch. 
The project grows when there are enough people with the same itch. Fees 
and bureaucracies is an excellent way to encourage people to find 
something else to scratch with.


johannes.wagener at gmx.net wrote:

>On 3 Apr 2003 at 15:23, Matt Tucker wrote:
>>>Well, you are right :)
>>>contribution is not for evry one.
>> > [snip]
>> > Whatever our non open source and not very commercial clients are also
>> > part of the Jabber world and I think we deserve influence on the
>> > Jabber Protocol and stuff as same as the other two parties.
>> >
>> > Paractically it is probably not possibel to distinguish between really
>> > commercials and those hobby "commercial" non open source developers.
>> > I also don't want newcommers to get excluded just because they don't
>> > want their app becoming open source.
>> > [snip]
>> > Of course I can understand that some of the more active
>> > contributorsare disapointed that there are so many "ideling"
>> > ppl around.
>>Respectfully, I think the answer in this case is that people in your 
>>situation are valued members of the larger Jabber community. However, 
>>they may not make good candidates for members in the JSF.
>And why not? 
>I personally have 
>chosen jabber BECAUSE it is simply a good forum for us who use the jabber protocol. 
>We are those that need the jabber protocol. And don't take me wrong but the JSF is for 
>us, who develop for jabber the jabberd's or the clients (in any way, commercial , open 
>source or whatever).
>And basically: many jabber clients are non open source and non commercial.
>In fact the coders DO NOT REALLY CARE about what they are, they simply use the 
>jabber protocol and should have influence on it of course. This is the sense: simple 
>I have absolutely NO INTEREST nor do I see any reason for a FEE. The reason for the 
>JSF is that we ppl that develop for jabber have our forum where we tacle out new 
>protocols. And sometimes some of us are interested in promoting Jabber a bit so the 
>play marketing team and even use some sponsored money to make some kind of 
>JSF is nothing else then this forum.
>And I, as a part of this forum, just want to tell you:
>I wont accept to have a partly commercialised JSF that holds commercial big 
>companies or open source only developers blah blah blah...
>I am simply against such an idea that is totally contraproductive to that what the JSF is.
>And to say it like this: I want a JSF that everybody can simply join for free, just when he 
>thinks he has some needs to contribute at the envolvement of jabber.
>Do you think Daniel, Alex and me did not contribute to the envolvement of jabber, tell 
>me a reason why we should get kicked out? We are here for a very long time.
>Matt Tucker, who do you think you are? I looked you up in google and you are a small 
>commercial jabber lib developer or whatever. I don't really care...
>Is the reason for this whole thing the strategy to force us non open source hobby coders 
>out of the JSF to reduce the risk of getting concurrence in later years?
>I am REALLY ANGRY about the whole thing and I will not accept this shit.
>Members mailing list
>Members at jabber.org

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