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From "Geir Magnusson Jr." <g...@pobox.com>
Subject Re: Inaction on Java SE JSR? (was: [Draft] New ASF/JCP Policies)
Date Mon, 02 Jul 2007 11:43:21 GMT
Robert - are you accidentally sending rich text mail? :)


On Jul 1, 2007, at 4:45 PM, robert burrell donkin wrote:

> On 7/1/07, Geir Magnusson Jr. <geir@pobox.com> wrote:
>> On Jun 29, 2007, at 4:24 PM, William A. Rowe, Jr. wrote:
> <snip>
>> Initially the contested Java SE JSR, and later any related/later
>> > JSR's of
>> > the same technology by the same spec lead, and finally - every JSR
>> > who's
>> > spec lead is in persistent violation of the mutually agreed-upon  
>> terms
>> > of the JSPA.  This seems only rational, no?
>> That would be every Sun-led JSR.
> IMO this would be a tactical mistake. not only do sun lead some very
> important JSRs but some specification leads from sun run completely
> transparent operations. our aim should be to effect change in the  
> process.
> arguing about the meaning of the terms of the JSPA leads to the  
> trap of
> making this a legal dispute rather than an ethical one.

I've argued that the basic premise of our engagement in the JCP is  
just that - to affect change in the process.  Yeah, we've had to hold  
our nose, but I think that good things have happened.  However, the  
Java SE TCK demonstrates that the system has a fundamental problem -  
that despite Sun's PR and spin to the contrary, Sun is a member that  
has "first among equals" status (which we knew and were willing to  
live with), and is very ready and willing to exploit that status when  
their business conditions warrant it (which we didn't expect).

Don't forget that even though nice humans that work for Sun are the  
humans that do the work of the spec lead, at the end of the day it's  
Sun that is the spec lead.   This whole thing is a tragedy - I have  
lots of friends at Sun, people I consider very good friends.  But it  
doesn't change the fact that Sun-the-corporation is making a very  
deliberate decision to behave in the way they are behaving towards  
us, and therefore I (and us) need to do what we need to do, even if  
that puts a strain on those friendships.

I expect that this will eventually resolve - Sun really can't  
maintain this position and still keep pretending that they are  
interested in Java as an open ecosystem, or community-oriented open  
source, or the "participation age", or whatever...

Did you catch Linus Torvalds calling JIS out on this stuff?

> i think that it would be more effective to target particular named
> individuals than corporations. AIUI Mark Reinhold runs this JSR. i  
> think it
> would be stronger to publicly blacklist him on the basis that his word
> cannot be trusted. apache should announce that (in front) they will  
> vote
> against every proposal with which he is associated and blacklist  
> all JSRs
> that he leads.

Nah - he's an employee who represents the company on that specific  
issue, and when he says something touching on licensing and such,  
it's because he went to the Pit of Darkness (it's   in the back of  
Building 18 at Sun's Menlo Park campus) and conferred with the  
lawyers.  Mark is actually a good guy, IMO.

Look at it another way - many have tried to paint me as the bad guy  
in all of this, not realizing (or pretending not to realize) that our  
open letter was from the ASF, not me personally.

>> (However, more reading suggests that it's accepted and withdrawing
>> > from
>> > a 'completed' JSR is rather moot.)
>> Yes
> yep
> apache could and should publicly blacklist that JSR
>> Not looking for votes, only feedback on the pros and cons of
>> > exiting those
>> > disfunctional JSR's which don't need to be held up to any mirror of
>> > a new
>> > ASF/JCP policy; only those which we can trivially determine to be
>> > already
>> > broken in respect to adhering to the JSPA, or adhering to their
>> > charter
>> > and that Spec's own policy?
>> This is the basic question we've always toyed with - is it worth
>> holding our nose because of the benefits our participation brings to
>> the JCP?
> i'd like to pose a related question: are the chances of effecting  
> meaningful
> change within the JCP worth the cost of the present imperfect?
> I'd say that up until the Java SE TCK, the answer is yes.  I'd also
>> say that the Java SE TCK collision with Sun will be viewed as an
>> important milestone - we've shined light into one of the remaining
>> dark corners of the JCP.  (The other remaining is Java ME)
>> I think that the core issue behind the Java SE TCK is less about the
>> license terms, and more that Sun has been able to control things due
>> to a web of commercial relationships where business pragmatism kept
>> things quiet.  Things are no longer quiet.  We've woken a sleeping
>> giant.
> :-)
> So what to do?  We are currently asking that each spec lead declare
>> they will offer the TCK under no-FOU terms, but I do wonder if that's
>> hollow when coming from Sun....
> a declaration is worth only as much as the word of the individual  
> leading
> the specification.  is there any reason not to insist on the actual  
> license
> for non-profits to be issued before the vote?'

We're working towards that, but not there yet.

> but this is really only about changing our own rules
> the GPL3 has finally been issued/ apache should now take the  
> offensive and
> move the battle onto ground more favourable to us. we should  
> propose and
> lead an ethics process JSR. the aim would be to examine how the JCP  
> process
> can be improved to allow greater participation by non-profit and  
> academic
> organisations and the general public, and examine specification  
> lead ethics.
> - robert

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