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From Simon Phipps <si...@webmink.com>
Subject Re: Legal concern: Are we getting to close ot a "division of markets" conversation?
Date Mon, 06 Jun 2011 01:42:14 GMT
On Mon, Jun 6, 2011 at 2:29 AM, <robert_weir@us.ibm.com> wrote:

> Simon Phipps <simon@webmink.com> wrote on 06/05/2011 09:13:24 PM:
>
> > >
> > > I think it would be great for TDF have an end-user downstream
> deliverable.
> > >  It would be great if anyone open source project wants to do that.  It
> > > would be great if a private company does this.  It would be good of a
> > > government wants to do this.  It would be great if multiple parties
> wanted
> > > to do this together.  It would be great it multiple parties wanted to
> do
> > > this separately.
> > >
> > > But I am very very very concerned that this conversation is starting
> to
> > > cross over into a "division of market" conversation, which has stiff
> > > penalties under US and international competition law.  Open source
> work,
> > > like standards, is work done voluntarily among competitors in the
> market.
> > > There are some things we must not talk about, especially things where
> > > competitors may be seen as arranging to reduce competition.  We need
> to
> > > steer the conversation far from this.
> > >
> > > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dividing_territories
> > >
> > >
> > We are discussing how the OpenOffice.org community (which as has been
> > explained has two different open source projects in addition to a
> variety of
> > downstream commercial consumers of the open source code) could structure
> its
> > operations.
> >
>
> Simon, in several posts I heard you suggest what sounded to me like a
> compromise that would reserve end user supported versions for TDF/LO,
> while Apache would exclude itself from that market and pursue other
> options.  You put that into the wiki at one point, using the workd
> "complementary" to describe the division. You've suggested that Apache not
> try to get involved in end-user software, especially where it would
> compete with TDF/LO.   If I misunderstood you, I apologize.  But if you
> are suggesting anything like that, I think that is crossing the line.
>
>
"Exclude itself from the market" is extraordinary language to use Rob. You
seem to view LibreOffice as a "competitor", as if this were competition
between IBM and Novell or something. It is not - it is the OpenOffice.Org
community in exile, a stakeholder in the future of the project, a resource
within the community.

The "art of the possible" here is about exploring ways to make things work
for the open source community, nothing to do with competitors in markets.
This is not a standards community, nor is it a 501(c)6 like Eclipse.

By the way, I don't work for Sun any more.

S.

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