Public Software WG Proposal
Version 3.3, Tuesday, April 25, 2000
Will be removed when replaced or recalled by proposing group.
Proposing group in alphabetical order:
Access to the Internet is not possible without the use
of appropriate software. We believe that technological approaches
such "open source" and "free software" hold the key
in realizing the ISOC goal of "Internet is for everyone".
This is particularly important for economically
disadvantaged people and for developing
countries where the availability of the source code
is expected to play a positive role in the development
of computer science.
In addition we believe that the wide spread adoption of free
sofware will have long term legal implications and we intend to
follow these developments.
We propose the creation of a working group
whose purpose would be to promote the use of open source
technologies, and we chose the title of "Public Software" to
signify our committment to make this possible.
The Public Software Working Group set themselves the following
Develop online resources
- Establish a clearinghouse of information about open source
development and how it relates to Internet access. This will
be a web accessible resource.
- Depending on the technological support by ISTF this might be
a database of links and resources. In collaboration with other
interested parties we might also be able to develop metadata
for free softare resources.
Promote the idea of free software inside and outside
of ISTF, through contacts, writings and events. In particular:
- encourage local ISOC members to lobby their governments
in favour of adopting policies that promote open source software.
- prepare case studies and encourage documentation about
government policies that promote open source use and
- promote its work by identifying and collaborating with
people and organizations that will support this proposal.
This includes open source developers, community activists,
computer companies as well as international organizations
such as UNESCO and W3C.
- work with educational institutions for the adoption
of free software for teaching purposes. This is crucial
if developing countries are to become technologically
- support for ongoing open source projects and initiatives
- work with software companies in getting software
donations that can then be distributed to people in need.
Pursue funding opportunities to accomplish this.
- encourage open source developers to work on solutions
that directly address problems of the third world and
- collaborate with other working groups on issues of mutual
interest to avoid duplication of work.
Examine at the wider issues touched by and related to free
software such as:
- open standards and software patents on a global scale
- applications of GPL to databases and non-executable content
We would like to warmly acknowledge here the help provided
by the following individuals:
Raul Zambrano, SDNP/UNDP, who set up a
temporary mailing list for the members of our group that was very
helpful for the development of our ideas and maintaining focus
on this project
- Vince Savio and Sheryl of ISOC for helping us establish our current
mailing list and facilitating a