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posted by cmn32480 on Saturday January 23 2016, @06:18PM   Printer-friendly
from the we-stay-bought dept.

Matthew Garrett reports

The Linux Foundation is an industry organisation dedicated to promoting, protecting and standardising Linux and open source software. The majority of its board is chosen by the member companies: 10 by platinum members (platinum membership costs $500,000 a year), 3 by gold members (gold membership costs $100,000 a year), and 1 by silver members (silver membership costs between $5,000 and $20,000 a year, depending on company size).

Up until recently, individual members ($99 a year) could also elect two board members, allowing for community perspectives to be represented at the board level. As of [January 18], this is no longer true.

The by-laws were amended to drop the clause that permitted individual members to elect any directors. Section 3.3(a) now says that no affiliate members may be involved in the election of directors, and section 5.3(d) still permits at-large directors but does not require them[2]. The old version of the bylaws are here--the only non-whitespace differences are in sections 3.3(a) and 5.3(d).

These changes all happened shortly after Karen Sandler announced that she planned to stand for the Linux Foundation board during a presentation last September [YouTube]. A short time later, the "Individual membership" program was quietly renamed to the "Individual supporter" program and the promised benefit of being allowed to stand for and participate in board elections was dropped (compare the old page to the new one). Karen is the executive director of the Software Freedom Conservancy, an organisation involved in the vitally important work of GPL enforcement.

Roy Schestowitz at TechRights entitled his coverage
The Linux Foundation Has Become Like a Corporate Think Tank; Microsoft Influence Included

[Our extensive coverage of malfeasance at the European Patent Office] has prevented us from covering as much about the Linux Foundation as we used to, including payments from Microsoft, services to Microsoft, and abandonment of GPL enforcement efforts because GPL enforcers went after a Microsoft executives-run VMware.

Several of the places that covered this remarked about the extremely quiet nature of the process.


Original Submission

 
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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 24 2016, @12:34AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 24 2016, @12:34AM (#293760)

    I'm trying to find any reason to care.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 24 2016, @03:15AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 24 2016, @03:15AM (#293791)

    They "sponsor" Linus Torvald's paycheck, and could well give him unwanted advice. I look forward to his public reaction in that event.

  • (Score: 1) by Deeo Kain on Sunday January 24 2016, @02:18PM

    by Deeo Kain (5848) on Sunday January 24 2016, @02:18PM (#293936)

    They simply decide what is Linux and what is not. And they dictate the rules. They might even decide to change the license.

    • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 24 2016, @07:18PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 24 2016, @07:18PM (#294042)

      The name is something they grabbed up.
      It is purposely deceptive (and, accordingly, you got snookered).

      The GPL is managed by GNU.org. [google.com]

      As noted in TFS, the Software Freedom Conservancy has been doing license enforcement (filing lawsuits against abusers).

      The Linux kernel is Torvalds' baby and he controls under which license it is released.
      He communicates to the public via the Linux Kernel Mailing List.

      Distros and desktop environments and FOSS apps each has its own site/ecosystem.
      What they do with licensing is subordinate to upstream decisions.

      The Linux Foundation is a johnny-come-lately self-appointed advocacy group, founded in 2007.
      In the past, they have spread the gospel of the advantages of Linux and associated projects.
      They also give seed money to FOSS projects that they deem worthy.
      They have been mentioned here before, [soylentnews.org] notably in the context of the for-profit edX education program.

      The kinds of membership fees mentioned in TFS is a good indicator of what the organization is about. (Money.)
      This latest move further demonstrates that the Linux Foundation is increasingly an incestuous group of Capitalists whose main concern is making a buck--not Software Freedom.

      -- OriginalOwner_ [soylentnews.org]