[wellylug] Invitation to participate in discussion about a national Linux body

Matt Brown matt at mattb.net.nz
Tue Aug 2 11:46:36 NZST 2005

Tue, 2 August 2005

Recently, discussion has taken place in a number of forums around the
creation of a national Linux body in New Zealand.

We (the undersigned) envisage a national Linux organisation for New
Zealand which would be very closely modelled on the successful Linux
Australia. In particular, such an organisation would have the following
broad goals:

      * Support, resource and promote local LUGs[1]
      * Provide national co-ordination services (speaker organisation,
      * Provide web/email/mailing list hosting for LUGs where required
      * Seek funding from corporates and other interested parties in
        order to provide financial support to LUGs and individuals to
        foster F/OSS[2] development efforts and support attendance at
        F/OSS conferences.
      * Partner with organisations like NZOSS[3] to advocate and educate
        the community (and particularly the Government) on the benefits
        of Linux and F/OSS.
      * Partner with organisations like Linux AU to support and enhance
        the LCA conference.
      * Provide SIG[4] mailing lists and support services for NZ F/OSS

The national organisation would not perform the functions of a LUG
itself, instead it would:

      * Provide a central location where users could be connected to
        their local LUG
      * Provide co-ordination and communication between individual LUGs
      * Undertake national initiatives supported by all LUGs
      * Aggregate LUG opinion and present a unified voice to the
        Government and other industry groups.
      * Support the formation of local LUGs in areas where they
        currently do not exist.

We believe that to be successful such a group must be separate to local
LUGs but have strong relationships with each of the LUGs around the

A mailing list has been setup at discuss at meta.net.nz; see
https://secure.meta.net.nz/mailman/listinfo/discuss for details on how
to subscribe. 

All interested parties are invited to join this list and participate in
the discussion. In particular, we would like to see robust discussion of
the above goals and also of the scope of the organisation:

      * What should the name of the organisation be (LinuxNZ, NZ Linux)?
      * Should the group seek to enhance an already existing group (eg
      * Should it seek to support other Free Operating Systems (*BSD,
      * Should it seek to support F/OSS on other Operating Systems, eg
        Mozilla / OpenOffice.org on Windows?
      * How should the organisation be organised legally? 
      * What should the nature of the group's relationships with NZOSS
        and Linux Australia be?

Our intention is to solicit opinions until about 1 October 2005. At that
point we would hope to be able to be in a position to put together a
more formal proposal to refine the discussion. All going well it would
be great to be able to hold the inaugural AGM of the new organisation
during LCA'06 in Dunedin in the final week of January 2006. 

We look forward to seeing you on the discussion list. 

Kind Regards

Craig Box <linux at dubculture.co.nz>
Matt Brown <matt at mattb.net.nz>
John McPherson <jrm21 at cs.waikato.ac.nz> 


     1. Linux User Group(s)
     2. Free and Open Source Software
     3. NZ Open Source Society
     4. Special Interest Group

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