Board meeting, September 24th, 1998


  • Dale Scheetz
  • Ian Jackson
  • Martin Schulze
  • Nils Lohner


  1. Appointment of new board members.
  2. Appointment of officers.
  3. Changes to the bylaws.
  4. AOB (important, part 1).
  5. Discussion of the future of SPI (time permitting).
  6. AOB (noncritical, part 2).

Recorder: Dale Scheetz

This board meeting was held using Internet Relay Chat. The meeting was called to order by Ian Jackson within minutes of the scheduled 2100 GMT.

Ian Jackson accepted Nils Lohner's proposal 1998-09-24.1 which defines the new board members and the offices that they will hold. As a result of this proposal the board is now composed as follows:

Ian Jackson      - President
Martin Schulze   - Vice President
Nils Lohner      - Treasurer
Dale Scheetz     - Secretary

Ian suggested that we discuss Nils proposal describing the authority and responsibility of the Treasurer. During the discussion, which broadened into a general discussion about modification to the bylaws, several general points were made, including:

  • Resolutions that pass should be made public on the web page.
  • Work on the bylaws should be taken one point at a time.

The original proposal 1998-09-24.2 describing the office of the Treasurer was passed unanimously by the board.

TODO: Nils will print out copies of both resolution and send them to our accountant to be forwarded to the appropriate banks.

A fairly rambling discussion on the future of SPI condensed into several firm ideas:

  • SPI is not only Debian. It is an umbrella organization for Debian and other Free Software projects that need SPI's services.

  • While it may be appropriate for SPI to own some trademarks, patents, or even software copyrights, the author can best protect their copyright using a license such as the GPL. For this reasons SPI does not encourage copyrights in its name, but will hold Intellectual Property, in trust, acting as an agent for the Free Software community where such action is useful.

  • Document SPI's resolve to manage Intellectual Property for the benefit of the community. TODO: Ian will write the draft statement.

  • Document SPI's resolve to manage the assets of projects under its umbrella in a manner consistent with the wishes of the client project. TODO: Ian will write the draft statement.

  • Consolidate, clarify, and document SPI's relationship with the "Open Source" project and Eric Raymond.

  • It was decided that Ean Schuessler would be appointed to a special position with SPI. Nils was given the task of writing up the proposal. TODO: Nils will write up the resolution and invitation.

As a final act of the meeting, the board passed proposal 1998-09-24.iwj.5 which allows the board to make decisions via e-mail.

Ian Jackson declared the meeting closed at 0100 GMT. Total meeting time: three hours.