Hi Sophie, all,
what I find interesting is, that everybody in these thread(s) around
Sophie's mail is asking for balance. And let me add, I do too.
But what I could observe is, that independent of what is about in
the daily work, is it coming to decision making or formulating a
text or even just defining a reasonable and fair process to get such
a result/decision/text, everybody is within his/her own frame and
not much interested in getting a compromise/a consensus. Proposals
for such "coming together", no matter from where they come, are
often not enough "fitted" for the own interests (with some few
exceptions which were very hard work to get) and getting questioned
again and again in long and exhausting processes.
And that makes it hard to get results and even more it bounds our
all time resources and motivation instead of doing other good
things. And I am thankful, that Sophie was speaking up for one
aspect of it, out of these bounded resources we all did not manage
to use our really good status in/of TDF during the pandemic for
helping, showing more solidarity with people who hit it a lot more
than TDF or even community members of TDF, of which we sometimes do
not know that they are suffering.
So, my personal conclusion of this is, we could become better if we
all **really** value all sides of it more and show our respect to
"the others" in more often acknowledging a compromise even if not
all of the own interests are in it, or facilitating a consensus.
Coding contributions is a critical part and nevertheless as well as
all others like documentation, translation, marketing, quality
assurance, local activities of the volunteers independent where,
mentoring, certifying, organizing and maintain the
We would not have these good status of our foundation during the
pandemic when we did not have all of them. They are all intertwined
and dependent on each other. And indeed, we should use this status
more for doing good within the founders will.
It is never too late to do so.
Thank you all for your various contributions,
Am 15.01.2022 um 17:26 schrieb sophi:
Hi Simon, all,
Le 14/01/2022 à 19:14, Simon Phipps a écrit :
I appreciate your comment here and (with some fear) have to respond to
Thank you for your support. You amplified more than my initial thoughts
which were only about solidarity, altruism and generosity.
On Fri, Jan 14, 2022 at 11:14 AM sophi <email@example.com> wrote:
On my point of view, it was not about achieving market dominance but
about solidarity. And TDF has failed here, again on my point of view.
Yes, I have to agree with you. Freedom, equality and solidarity used to be
the norm at TDF.> Over the last couple of years that has largely ended at
the Foundation level (fortunately our community still has many parts where
this is not true). This has led to progress grinding to a halt
through mistrust. For example, both TDC and LOOL were ended just at the
point where the external conditions suggested they were going to flourish.
Little has been achieved in their place as you observe, and as the tired
bickering in this thread illustrates.
I don't want to go back in these stories of TDC and LOOL again but they
are two very different situations for me. What I can agree with you is
that both have damaged the community's confidence in what is TDF and
what it should represent.
I've read all the minutes of the board meetings, attended several of
these meetings, and I can say this board has took several actions during
this two very difficult years without having a chance to meet. My mail
was not to address reproaches to the board, but a reaction to what
Thorsten and Michael said on the pandemic period.
Egalitarianism was replaced by turning inwards to fight unproductively
among those privileged to be allowed information - and in the process to
slander those involved before. As a result of this the Foundation has
turned even more closed, with Board inflighting leaving the Trustees in the
dark while the arguments went on. There has consequently been no spirit of
solidarity to harness to do good outside the project. As you say, that is
tragic, and I really appreciate your observation of it.
Well that's not exactly what I said, and in my opinion the board was
more open to discussions than some years before. But I agree with you
that even arguments should be more transparent and the community should
be aware when things are going worse.
If TDF is to satisfy its mission this has to stop. The new Board has a huge
opportunity and responsibility to put all this behind them and lead
positively. It must shun divisiveness and seek ways to rekindle solidarity
by emphasizing equality and promoting freedom. This will not be done
treating the motivations of some participants as suspect! In fact almost
everyone is pursuing an "interest", almost by definition in a collaborative
Yes and I really appreciate the tools provided by the MC to rebuild trust.
As Maslow <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maslow%27s_hierarchy_of_needs>
observed, before higher-level behaviours can be cultivated, basic needs
must be met - especially belonging and esteem. The Foundation needs to be
more inclusive of all its trustees in its processes rather than just
consulting them for votes once every two years. It needs to be realistic
about the pragmatics of large-scale software engineering and how it's paid
for and rein-in those trying to frame "commercial" as tainted. It has to
seek ways to encourage both community and commercial activities inside its
"umbrella" rather than treating some as clean and some as unclean.
This is not what I've seen in the project, commercial is not tainted. We
need to have a balance between commercial and charitable activities. In
my very own opinion, we have moved away from this balance and we could
have reshaped it during the pandemic.
I very much hope the new Board will engage positively and unanimously on
these things. I'm not finding the current conversation encouraging but I
have hopes the new team will take a firm hold and change things for the
Well this discussion has been proposed by a community member, and I find
it encouraging in the sens of I hope it will clarify who is TDF and what
it should do for its community at large.
Lothar K. Becker, Member of the Board of Directors
The Document Foundation, Kurfürstendamm 188, 10707 Berlin, DE
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