Friday 26 March 2010 by Bradley M. Kuhn
Seven and a half years ago, I got this idea: the membership of the Free Software Foundation should have a chance to get together every year and learn about what the FSF has been doing for the last year. I was so nervous at the first one on Saturday 15 March 2003, that I even wore a suit which I rarely do.
The basic idea was simple: the FSF Board of Directors came into town anyway each March for the annual board meeting. Why not give a chance for FSF associate members to meet the leadership and staff of FSF and ask hard questions to their hearts' content? I'm all about transparency, as you know. :)
the position of Executive Director a few months before the 2005
meeting, I've attended every annual meeting, just as an ordinary
Associate Member and
FSF volunteer. It's always enjoyable to attend a conference organized
by someone else that you used to help organize; it's like, after having
done sysadmin work for other people for years, to have someone keep a
machine running and up to date just for you. It's been wonderful to
watch the FSF AM meeting grow into a full-fledged conference for
discussion and collaboration between folks from all over the Free
Software world. “One room, one track, one day” has become
“five rooms, three tracks, and three days” with the
proverbial complaint throughout:
But, why do I have to miss this
great session so that I can go to some other great session!?!
Some highlights for me this year were:
it was more fun because we got to see you make all the mistakes.
FSF is an organization based around a very simple, principled idea: that users and programmers alike deserve inalienable rights to copy, share, modify, and redistribute all the software that they use. This issue isn't merely about making better software (although Free Software developers usually do, anyway); it's about a principle of morality: everyone using computers should be treated well and be given the maximal opportunity to treat their neighbors well, too. Helping make this simple idea into reality is the center of all the work I've done for the last 12 years of my life, and I expect it will be the focus of my (hopefully many) remaining years. I am thankful that the Voting Members of FSF have given me this additional opportunity to help our shared cause. I plan to work hard in this and all the other responsibilities that I already have to our Free Software community. Like everyone on FSF's Board of Directors, I serve in that role completely as a volunteer, so in some ways I feel this is just a natural extension of the volunteer work I've continued to do for the FSF regularly since I left its employment in 2005.
Finally, I was glad to meet (or meet again) so many FSF supporters at LibrePlanet, and I deeply hope that I can serve our shared goal well in this additional role.
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