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[Fsfe-uk] Re: Lobbying UK govt (MJ Ray)

From: Nick Hockings
Subject: [Fsfe-uk] Re: Lobbying UK govt (MJ Ray)
Date: Thu, 09 May 2002 01:49:13 +0200 (SAST)
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> From: MJ Ray <address@hidden>
> Subject: Re: [Fsfe-uk] Lobbying UK govt
> Date: Sun, 05 May 2002 20:52:35 GMT
> Nick Hockings <address@hidden> wrote:
> > Specifically I'm planning to send somebody round to parliment handing out 
CDs. (DemoLinux is a 100% free, Debian Potato based distro that runs from CD 
without installation. This allows a quick demonstration of key apps eg open 
office,  KDE...) 
> Can you tell me more about DemoLinux, please?  I'm trying to organise a
> CD for the 19th May/9th June LinuxInstallDay.org events.

See  http://www.demolinux.org/

At present they have used Star Office, but I have a friend working on replacing 
it with Open Office 6.0.  We also investigate the possibility of the CD 
doubling as a Debian Woody installation disk.
> I think this is something AFFS should at least endorse, but can you tell
> us more about how this is going to be approached, please?

Basically I have some disposable income that I will use to pay food, travel 
costs etc...  for a friend who is taking a gap year in his comp sci degree. 
Being a long time regular of the FSFE-Discussion list his views are on record 
and close to the main stream of FSFE. He is technically competent, and capable 
of presenting to small groups and individuals. (Since he is based in Manchester 
would you like me to arrange for him to meet with one of the AFFS exec in that 

I aim to get DemoLinux CDs and a series of letters to every member of UK 
parliment. Some will be generic letters based closely on AFFS, FSFE, and FSF 
documents, others will be targeted to the interests of individual MPs and the 
committees/departments in which they serve. The general message being:
1) the charitable & scientific nature of free software as per the Four Freedoms 
& GPL, plus its compatibility with the original principles of copyright.
2) the techincal quality & utility of the available free software.
3) What MPs can do to help and to use free software wrt legislation and govt 
purchasing policy.

In addition to delivering these to MPs offices, my freind will reply to &/or 
visit every MP who responds. (There are about 660 MPs ie upto 2 per day to see 
them all in one year.)

To back this up I am recruiting a team of volunteers around the UK who are 
willing to install and maintain free software in their local MP's offices. The 
principle being that the surest convert is a user. It also has the advantage 
that MPs would become knowledgeable of the technical reality of changing over. 
That way there should not be any over ambitious, abortive roll-outs and they 
won't fall prey to prorietary FUD.

Nick Hockings


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