[OSM-talk] [Moved to Talk] [OSM-newbies] assistance not wanted

Nick Black nickblack1 at gmail.com
Tue Mar 13 10:47:41 GMT 2007

Barry, Chistoph, talk,

OpenStreetMap does not exist to promote the use or adoption of one
form of software over another, it exists to:

"encourag[e] the growth, development and distribution of free
geospatial data and to provid[e] geospatial data for anybody to use
and share."

This was decided during an IRC meeting in April 2006.

I was slightly concerned with Barry's email, it definitely pushed what
I would personally consider the boundaries of mailing list etiquette
to be.  However, it isn't for one member of this community to stop
another from using the list in a way the community as a whole sees
fit.  I think Barry should not withdraw his offer and certainly
shouldn't withdraw from OSM, but Barry should consider the way he
markets it.  For example, adding information about the  software to
the wiki, a page like:


already contains information about commercial products that use
proprietary software, and it would seem a fitting place for
information about Barry's product.  I also think that marketing the
software at the newbie's list could be seen in some ways as targeting
inexperienced people who may not be aware that F[f]ree software exists
that does similar things to your software.  Perhaps in the future you
could say something like "try out my software, or take a look at X or
Y which is also freely available" (...in your favorite text
editor...).  Doing this will help mitigate peoples criticisms.

I also think that this is a debate that should be conducted on a
mailing list, rather than off list, to allow the community as a whole
the opportunity to voice their opinions.  Surely if a persons goal is
to promote free-as-in-speech software, they will better achieve your
goals through open rather than closed debate?

With more information, we can all make better choices.


On 3/13/07, Bettersoftware <barry at bettersoftware.co.uk> wrote:
> Folks
> My offer of yesterday has upset an OSM member - Chistoph Eckert. Apparently
> because my software is not open source , I stand accused of Advertising on
> OSM.
> This was certainly not my intention, which was to assist in the project and
> allow people who maybe would get involved if a less expensive solution was
> available.
> I therefore , regretfully withdraw my offer, and my self from OSM.
> Enjoy your mapping
> Regards
> Barry
> _______________________________________________
> Newbies mailing list
> Newbies at openstreetmap.org
> http://lists.openstreetmap.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/newbies

Nick Black

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