One month ago, the Open Letter to the Free Software Community was published, alluding to the new Libreboot leadership. Today, the ideals expressed there have been formalised into an official project policy. In the new General Management Guidelines, the ins-and-outs of our democratic system is codified, including the formal team list. Hint, hint: the structure isn’t “I, Alyssa Rosenzweig, decide everything and Thou shall bow down to me”! There are four core team members, and we welcome community feedback for major decisions.
There was an underlying tension in the letter: should Libreboot rejoin GNU? On purely political and technical levels, the answer is a resounding “yes”. We share the mission of spreading free software. Our communities overlap. Most of the Libreboot community uses GNU software, and much of GNU uses libreboot. Technically, the tighter integration is useful. Politically, closer ties will strengthen both of our projects. But this is neither completely a political or technical question – it is a human one.
There is no easy answer to this. But the best course of action is to reach out beyond the team to the community at large. A number of people ranging from Libreboot users to GNU developers to casual bystanders chimed in, and the answer was an overwhelming “yes, you should have done this a month ago!”
With that in mind, we have reapplied for GNU. Leah conducted the initial discussions, such as the Reddit thread, as she felt that she needed to correct her own error. I have since been handling the application itself, which was submitted recently. GNU has not yet made a decision on the matter. Ultimately, it will be up to Richard Stallman himself whether the mutual benefits of joining will outweigh any potential awkwardness.
No matter the response, Libreboot remains committed to free software. Whether or not we need a g’new name, this will never change.
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