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From Rob Weir <robw...@apache.org>
Subject Re: [VOTE] Apache OpenOffice Community Graduation Vote
Date Sat, 25 Aug 2012 12:53:59 GMT
On Fri, Aug 24, 2012 at 7:42 PM, Marvin Humphrey <marvin@rectangular.com> wrote:
> On Fri, Aug 24, 2012 at 1:00 PM, Rob Weir <robweir@apache.org> wrote:
>> Or if someone who cared sufficiently about this policy area took
>> ownership and proposed a wording of the policy, either as a Board
>> resolution, or on legal-discuss, and had that policy approved and
>> recorded via the ordinary means.
>
> As a member of the Incubator PMC, I am willing to submit the following
> question via <https://issues.apache.org/jira/browse/LEGAL>:
>
>     "AOO official binary artifacts"
>
>     May the Apache Open Office podling consider binary artifacts prepared as
>     described in this passage "official", in the sense that their sense that
>     their release is an "act of the corporation" and their contributors are
>     indemnified?
>

The correct reference is to Bylaws 12.1.  That clause does not use the
undefined term "official" or "unofficial" or "binary" or "source" or
or "act of the corporation" indeed any mention of releases at all.  It
refers to all acts done by covered persons , "...in good faith and in
a manner that such person reasonably believed to be in or not be
opposed to the best interests of the corporation".

This would be a question not only of AOO, but of any project that
currently distributes binaries.

Are PMC's when distributing binaries acting "...in good faith and in a
manner that such person reasonably believed to be in or not be opposed
to the best interests of the corporation" ?

IMHO, the "best interests of the corporation" is best determined by
the Board, not Legal Affairs.  Of course, they could choose to punt
the question to anywhere, including Legal Affairs.  But it should
start with them.

At that point we could also ask about all other non-source things that
PMCs do, including maintaining website, where there is always risk of
copyright infringements, data privacy laws, etc, or charges of
discrimination in selection or rating of student performance in Google
Summer of Code, or any of a number of risks that occur in the
operation of any corporate entity.   I think once we start poking we
find that there are many things a PMC does today, beyond the direct
distribution of source code, that brings risk.    I don't think the
Board has ever enumerated which of these other activities are covered
by 12.1 and which are not.  I have no opinion on whether doing this is
a good use of their time.  It seems doing so would tie their arms
somewhat, and it might be better to leave these questions unanswered
until such time as they arise in context.  That preserves flexibility.

-Rob

>         http://www.apache.org/dev/release.html#what
>
>         The Apache Software Foundation produces open source software. All
>         releases are in the form of the source materials needed to make
>         changes to the software being released. In some cases, binary/bytecode
>         packages are also produced as a convenience to users that might not
>         have the appropriate tools to build a compiled version of the source.
>         In all such cases, the binary/bytecode package must have the same
>         version number as the source release and may only add binary/bytecode
>         files that are the result of compiling that version of the source code
>         release.
>
> My preference would be to have someone more invested in AOO serve as advocate,
> but I will do it if no one else steps forward.
>
> Marvin Humphrey
>
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