[fc-uk-discuss] The Euston Manifesto.

Graham Seaman graham at theseamans.net
Thu Jun 1 15:53:13 BST 2006

Tim Cowlishaw wrote:

> What do people on-list think about this, especially the paragraph
> relating to IP and open source?
> Quoted from: 
> http://eustonmanifesto.org/joomla/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=12&Itemid=1 
I was trying to work out why the manifesto was so negative and who all 
these terrible 'left-liberals' they were attacking were; it took me a 
while to realise a lot of it is targetted at George Galloway and 
Respect.  So I think the manifesto fits into too narrow a political 
slot  (left of New Labour but  right of Respect) for any of the 
free/open groups to identify with directly. The para on open source 
seemed slightly out of place with the rest, though definitely within 
their general position (I can't see Stallman or even Raymond signing up 
to that paragraph). I think it's great that free culture (in the general 
sense) now gets reflected into political  positions in the wider world - 
but it's definitely that way round, and this shouldn't be taken as a 
political position being provided for free culture to fit into. If 
someone wants to offer them some advice maybe they should suggest that 
'open development'  is not  that helpful unless the final  result is  
also free.   But I suspect it is not just a case of sloppiness, and that 
they would positively not agree with this.

Well, my 0.5p...


> ---------------------------------------
> 14) Open source.
> As part of the free exchange of ideas and in the interests of
> encouraging joint intellectual endeavour, we support the open
> development of software and other creative works and oppose the
> patenting of genes, algorithms and facts of nature. We oppose the
> retrospective extension of intellectual property laws in the financial
> interests of corporate copyright holders. The open source model is
> collective and competitive, collaborative and meritocratic. It is not
> a theoretical ideal, but a tested reality that has created common
> goods whose power and robustness have been proved over decades.
> Indeed, the best collegiate ideals of the scientific research
> community that gave rise to open source collaboration have served
> human progress for centuries.
> ----------------------------------------
> cheers,
> Tim
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