Look, you’ve got it all wrong! You don’t NEED to follow ME, You don’t NEED to follow ANYBODY! You’ve got to think for your selves! You’re ALL individuals!

So when the LUGRadio guys interviewed Popey I did not realise what sort of an explosion of feelings there would be especially aimed towards me! Its exactly because I did not know what would occur, that I can these events occurred, they need not have happened otherwise. So this post is a response to Mr Popes ( Popey ) question, “do the LUG.ORG.UK need a leader ?”

First off lets be clear that this is not a popularity contest and the President thing ? well he does look like the Pres ( Elvis that is ) and it is an honourific for me just like calling someone Chief or Sir but others picked it up outside of the conversatoin regarding LUGs . This is not Popey baiting , your in utterly the wrong place if you think I have an opinion or attitude that is anything less than admiration for what the LUG.org.uk have done. Its not about singling out one guy. I went to LUG.org.uk and asked the IRC channel a question about representation in the community now Community managers are getting established.

So why Mr Pope ?

During the BOF this year after Steve and I had our BOF ( also about LUGs but from a end member perspective ) subsumed into the LUGMaster BOF and Alan was from certain view points directional. I have reread his post about LUG leadership and I feel the point is that we need to be more active more public more involved and more inclusive. He gets singled out because its the nature of people to choose leaders and to choose responsible people . But I Digress. Okay Ive just been corrected by Popey and told that Tony Whitmore ( tonytiger ) chaired the meeting so I guess its about perception at this point. Sorry tony !

Heres the crux of the original issue I have.

LUGs ( Lugradio/LUG.ORG.UK/Whatever you want to call the end users who enjoy the fraternity of a LUG group ) should have a representative on the podiums and in the press whenever there is a gathering of “talking heads” who are asked to debate about Linux and Open Source.

I asked a few people ( okay I asked about 30 + so far and thats a small subset but LUGradio gets little above 100 that ive seen on irc ) and no I dont remember all the names but those of you I discussed it with can remember the concept and the idea and I just asked for and suggested people and Mr Popes name came up quite a bit so its not me thats started this okay its the people, the community.

Now at this point it should be made clear that the lug.org.uk guys are very keen to avoid having leaders and spokesmans. Which is a grand and noble concept but one that leads to the outside world wondering who the heck that can really contact when they want to talk to Linux Users in the UK. They quite correctly ( note CORRECTLY ) point to all the LUGMasters in the UK as points of contact. At this point my idle mind found it interesting that the group shuns leaders and spokesman but embraces Masters as a term to define a point of contact for a LUG. However it is interesting to note that the people who run the LUG.ORG.UK server are keen to be a service group and not to be singled out as representative of the server or its groups. I do hope I have that right because from conversations on the IRC channel that is what I had percieved.

However LUGRadio seems to have mobilised that majority in the LUGS whom are socially and evangelically active but its a shame than on any given night there are more people in Lugradio than there are in the aforementioned IRC channel. Then there are the Hashlugradio guys, getting very meta and very user land, whose show about the show seems to be more a reflection of the user comments about the show and therefore a comment about the users and the community.

The idea of seeking a spokesman is to me an idea whose time has come, to paraphrase Vitor Hugo, and that is why it is being discussed. LUGS in the UK are not dying and the British attitude towards motivation and direction drives the undercurrents of that action. We the people are looking for a spokesman outside of the Distros and within the community who can demonstrate the ability to be both fair and measured and able to negotiate. I dont believe its about the LUGS being told what to do , its about the LUGS being able to explain why we do it.

So there. now?


Consider this: are we asking a vote for the man or the idea ?

Okay , Ive said that now, and if you want to discuss this with me more directly then please come down to the Sussex Linux user group and talk directly to me and get a measure of who I am and where I come from and why this and Open Source Software matter to me. I will post this and expect to be kickbanned ( on IRC ) from a few places. but thanks for reading and dont vote for Popey because you want it to be him . Vote because the LUG(radio/org/whatever) community needs a spokesman that the media, expos and other watchers need as a point of contact and frankly he does that job well already and we need more than the LUG radio guys as a point of contact !


We need the LUGS to be the largest noise in the press and the media about what OSS is doing today and not what the Distros are doing for OSS today .


Thanks for reading.

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3 Comments on “Look, you’ve got it all wrong! You don’t NEED to follow ME, You don’t NEED to follow ANYBODY! You’ve got to think for your selves! You’re ALL individuals!

  1. Hmmmm.

    Cat. Meet Pigeons.

    Just been tracking through some of the blogs on this – I think it might run and run!