[Koha] Fwd: [OPEN-ILS-GENERAL] Evergreen foundation (again)

MJ Ray mjr at phonecoop.coop
Thu Sep 24 21:44:00 NZST 2009

Joann Ransom <jransom at library.org.nz> wrote:
> I too am worried about trying to formalize this Koha governance to much. 
> I think librarians do tend to try and over organise things although we 
> are very good at sharing.

There's a balance to be struck, but at the moment, it feels like there
are many structures but they are hidden from new users.  I think this
is what's sometimes called Structurelessness, but I could be wrong.

> [...] I also think that it will be hard to have any 
> teeth and in how will it actually govern when anyone can  decide to 
> fork-off anytime they like. Goodwill and collaboration and peer pressure 
> are the tools which will work.

It's not hard to govern, but it's not the contract-and-command system
typical of the private sector.  There's a whole business sector built
around voluntary membership as its first principle.  Just 6 companies
from that sector account for over an eighth of New Zealand's 2008 GDP

I feel that goodwill and collaboration will work, but peer pressure
probably won't: pressure someone too much and they'll go away for a
while or maybe permanently.  The best way to give it authority is to
offer some benefits to participants: for us longer-time contributing
developers, avoiding repeating certain bits of history is probably
enough of a benefit, but what's in it for new developers?

> However, that isn't to say that someone 
> relatively laid back and neutral (HLT) shouldn't  step up and take steps 
> to secure the domain name, trademarks etc for the greater Koha community 
> to use and own. Keeping them safe from misuse if you like. [...]

I think the problem with trusts in England is that they do not
necessarily have an asset lock, according to

An asset lock is required to keep those things safe from misuse.  Is
that different in NZ?  Does HLT have an asset lock?  Can a link be
added to http://wiki.koha.org/doku.php?id=kohaheldbyfoundation ?

I saw a comment from someone which reminded me that some promises
specifically mentioned "Koha Software Foundation" and nothing else.
So, which of the domain name and trademark holders are willing to
assign or perpetually license them to HLT?

I'd have to ask to be sure, but I think software.coop would license
our rights to HLT as soon as we and our legal advisors developed
suitable terms.

MJ Ray (slef)  LMS developer and webmaster at     | software
www.software.coop http://mjr.towers.org.uk        |  .... co
IMO only: see http://mjr.towers.org.uk/email.html |  .... op

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