foss-sthlm, the sixth, the controversial one

I’m happy to say that I was the main planner and organizer of yet another foss-sthlm meetup, the sixth. Last week we attracted about one hundred eager FOSS hackers to attend to this meeting to which I had found and cooperated a somewhat controversial sponsor.

We have had a discussion within foss-sthlm now due to this event’s sponsor: what kinds of companies are acceptable as sponsor for FOSS events and what are not? It is obvious that we have a lot of different opinions here and several people have expressed that they deliberately didn’t go to meetup #6 simply because of the sponsor’s involvement and relationship to the Swedish defence industry. Do you think a defence manufacturer or weapon systems creator can also have its good sides and sponsor good activities or should we distance ourselves from them?

I’m honestly still interested in more opinions on this. We have not formed a policy around this subject because I simply don’t think that’s a good idea. We’re not a formal organization and we all have our different views. I think we have our members hand around and participate as long as we stay within a reasonable “boundary”. If we would get involved with the wrong kind of companies, a larger portion of the group would boycott the meeting or just plainly leave foss-sthlm. But why would we ever? I’m the one who’s mostly been in touch with sponsors and I would certainly not get involved and ask for money from companies that I believe have crossed the magic line in the sand.

The meeting was perhaps the most techy and most advanced of them all so far, and I found the talks very inspiring and educating. I’ve not had time or energy to put up a page with pictures or descriptions of them, and I think I’ll just skip it. You should probably try harder to attend next time instead!