Board meeting, December 1st, 1998


  • Dale Scheetz
  • Ean Schuessler
  • Ian Jackson
  • Nils Lohner


  1. Discuss and hopefully pass resolution 1998-12-01.iwj.1
  2. Map out strategy for dealing with the Open Source trademark problems.

Recorder: Dale Scheetz

This board meeting was held using Internet Relay Chat. The meeting was called to order by Ian Jackson shortly after 1800 GMT.

There was a short discussion between Ian and Nils about the progress and collection of the consultation replies so that they could be reviewed together.

Resolution was left for later in the month.

Nils then presented a tentative plan for SPI's future management of the OS trademark consisting of three steps:

  1. Write a position paper laying out SPI's plans for the mark.
  2. Collect position statements from those who support our plan.
  3. Discuss with the major participants what steps to take next.

Dale pointed out that this was all predicated on the assumption that SPI would continue to hold the mark. He pointed out that early consultation replies indicated that one way to end the battle over ownership would be to transfer the mark to a neutral third party like the USENET foundation, or Linux International.

While a transfer of this sort would protect the mark from the commercial misuse feared by the SPI board, Ian suggested that we should wait for the results of the consultation before we choose which route to take. As the consultation period will be complete at the end of the month, it was decided to table the decision until then.

In addition it was concluded that in the mean time work should progress on the position paper, so that both the results of the consultation and the paper can be released together.

Ian returned the conversation to his proposal for obtaining relevant documentation from the previous board members. He expressed the need to get all SPI documentation returned to the current board, as well as concern that the previous board might take unilateral action.

After some discussion of the mechanics of dealing with the USPTO and some re-wording of several sections, the motion 1998-12-01.iwj.1 was passed.

Ian Jackson declared the meeting closed shortly after 1900 GMT. Total meeting time: one hour.