A report on Ubuntu LoCo. 09/28/07

Ok everyone it’s me again Justin Breithaupt, usacomputertec, Pomeroylab or whatever name you may call me. I wanted to start a free Linux computer lab in Pomeroy WA. Ubuntu seemed like a good OS to choose at the time. However I also perused other distros and found that most of my customers preferred PCLinuxOS over Ubuntu. So I figured my primary OS would be PCLinuxOS but that Ubuntu would also be shown and discussed as a solution. I sat up a LoCo web page wiki.ubuntu.com/WA-Pomeroy which is still there unless they have removed it.

One reason to start a LoCo where I am? Well see for yourself.

Here is where I am http://www.listphile.com/Linux/World_Wide_Lab_Linux_Computer_Lab

I first started receiving bad letters in regards to my efforts about a week ago. People started telling me that I was a LUG and not a LoCo. Others said it was just fine. So finally I sent a message out to all of them and you will see the responses I got below.

My original Message:

I have an alternative to what LoCo could be. It’s my understanding that to be truly LoCo you have to only run Ubuntu and only teach Ubuntu. Thats what people keep telling me. They keep telling me this is why I’m not LoCo. This is not an open idea at all but rather a closed minded idea.

I believe that LoCo should be a positive open minded community that allows all distros to be taught and also can teach about other subjects like Hardware, repair, programming, and other computer related stuff. If we are to restricted then LoCo will just be a place to learn about Ubuntu and nothing else. Is that what we want? Thats like saying we need to build a school to teach about Math and another for English, and another for Science, and another for Geography but why? I’m very confused as to how this idea of thinking will help you in the long hall. Sure it’s nice for Ubuntu if they can dominate all distros and make sure computer manufacturers only sell Ubuntu so that Ubuntu tech supports can be more effective but at the cost of other education? Believe it or not there are things that other Distros can do that Ubuntu can’t. You can’t force one Distro on everyone. Even the head LoCo guy in WA state could not install the programs I mentioned and get them to work on Ubuntu. I had to resort to other Distros for that. I’m not discouraging the Ubuntu project I just think that LoCo should be “OPEN” to other distros like “OPEN SOURCE” “FREEDOM OF CHOICE”. These things can’t be limited or we are in violation of the GPL’s original intent.

I’m talking with LUGs and LoCos around my area about a Linux Fest and advertising all the places you can learn about Linux so people will know where to go not just LUGs or LoCos. The question is if we try to advertise you will you intern play nice and allow LUGs to join your organization or will you be exclusive and exclude everyone else? This will make a big difference in how we approach advertising different places to learn Linux. I await the LoCo community’s response.

And I got a few responses.

My team is for advocacy of free software, open formats and the spread
of information of any kind. We use ubuntu as the best tool for the job
because it's the simplest, most well known and easiest so far. And
we've got a much better chance of improving peoples computer
experiences with ubuntu.

Now if someone came to the installfest and wanted to install SuSE I'm
sure someone would help them install it, not me though I've tried too
many times to install SuSE right and I don't find the experience fun.
But that's just me I won't restrict anyone from installing or helping
other people install what ever they want.

Now if someone wanted to put up posters for Mandriva or PCLinuxOS then
we'd need to sit down and talk about direction because ultimately the
team is only powerful when we are all pushing in the same direction
and marketing is one of those things that you fail at if you release
too many marketing messages at once.

It sounds like you've met some real jerks in the past, lets hope no
one is like that in the future.

Best Regards, Martin Owens
Hi,

A LoCo Team is an Ubuntu team and as such is naturally dedicated
mainly to Ubuntu. If you want a more general group, that's why LUGs
exist.

I don't understand where you see the problem. There should be LUGs
where people using all distributions get together, but there also need
to be teams specific to a single distribution, that can provide good
and precise support for it, actuate on events related to it, and
promote not only that particular distributions but also Free Software
in general. Their are not exclusive but rather should work together;
there may even be (and there are) people that participate in both, a 
LoCo and a LUG.

And about your last paragraph, I'm not sure if I understand it at all, 
but I see nothing against that a LoCo team could organize an event
together with a LUG or the community of another distribution. Actually, 
the Catalan LoCo for example is going to celebrate the
release of Ubuntu's the next version (Gutsy) inside -and partially
sponsored by- a LAN Party, that has nothing to do with Ubuntu. You can perfectly 
be in a LoCo if you use both, Ubuntu and another (or
more) distribution(s) of your choice, only that you should have some 
understanding about Ubunt and when you are actuating as a LoCo member
you shouldn't be telling people to use that other distribution instead
of Ubuntu :P, but be promoting Ubuntu.

But of course if you know someone who uses another X distribution and
needs help with something you are free and encouraged to help him with
it.

Being a member of a LoCo team doesn't mean that you are a
"Ubuntu-only" guy, but rather that you really like Ubuntu (but might
also like other distros), and that you want to help it's users and see
it's community and user base growing.
Yes, please ignore my messages, Marin Owens' is actually much clearer
(I had not seen it before otherwise I wouldn't have answered again).

About that points you say, some of them might be solved for you using
 Kubuntu.

Also I'd like to know when you last checked Ubuntu. Installation has
improved a lot, specially this last releases. If it's much time ago
you'd probably like to have a look at it again (in this case the best
would be to wait for Gutsy to be released, the 18th October).

Regards,

Siegfried-Angel Gevatter Pujals (RainCT)

Linux User #438657. Ubuntu User #11680.

I made a response somewhere in this time period and here it is:

I know they keep improving Ubuntu and releasing it and every time I download it and try it. It's a good system for the people who like it and yes there are customers that prefer it. The point I'm trying to make is it will always be Debian and it's abilities to install software restricted to the Debian base. Ubuntu needs better compilers so it can adapt to non Debian programs. They also need an interface like is in Ubuntu Christian Edition which is what my pastor uses. I installed it on a new computer for him before I knew about PCLinuxOS. It still runs great but the e-sword or gnome-sword app has it's issues. Chock another one up for PCLinuxOS who's gnome-sword works just fine. Not sure why this is. I think if I remember correctly the defendguin game does not work in PCLinuxOS but thats trivial since most people don't have a computer just to play that game. I wish it would work.

Please refer to Martin's message, now that I read mine again I see
they are somewhat confusing..
Of course, isn't that what we all want? Every single person that
switches to Free Software is a steep forward, without having much
importance to what exactly (s)he switches.

The point is just that if you are on a Ubuntu LoCo it's because you
personally thing that Ubuntu is a good way to let people know Free
Software, as Martin explained. As well as if you join a user team of
any other distribution it's because you thing that this other
distribution is better for the same objective, or as if you don't
really matter about distributions but just want to promote it in a
more general manner, then you'd probably go for a LUG.

-- 
Siegfried-Angel Gevatter Pujals (RainCT)
Linux User #438657. Ubuntu User #11680. Simple, a LoCo is a local community team. Whether it is Ubuntu, Fedora,
 SUSE,  Microsoft, or Apple, it is about THAT community.

If you want to preach and teach all open source and all of the distros,
 then 
you are interested in a LUG. An Ubuntu LoCo team should push everything
 
*buntu, as well as open source. It is fine to let others know of other 
distros, but the main priority of an Ubuntu LoCo is the local advocacy
 of 
*buntu. This isn't to say if the chance arises, you should avoid going
 out of 
the way to help someone with something that isn't *buntu.

-- 
Richard A. Johnson
nixternal@ubuntu.com
GPG Key: 0x2E2C0124
Nice.

Anyways, I don't think a discussion about on what Ubuntu and on what
PCLinuxOS is better has anything to do on this list, that is intended
to be rather low traffic list about important LoCo related stuff. Perhaps a thread on Ubuntu Forums (http://ubuntuforums.org/) would be
more appropriate. The focus and definition is different, a LUG is a _user_ group, a LoCo
is an advocacy group; they have very different memes and quite
different events. A LUG will just sit there and server it's members,
it will put energy into getting people to join the group (LUG) where as a LoCo should not be putting effort into getting people to join
their LoCo, they should be putting all energy into promoting Ubuntu or what ever it is because LoCo members will drop out of the expanding
user base.

The difference is that one cares about existing users and one cares
about new users; each has members which can be shared but the actions
expected and taken by those users are different; I don't expect normal
users to join my LoCo unless they want to help out in some way.

Best Regards, Martin Owens Bingo!  *Perfect* definition.  I haven't heard it said or seen it
written better.  Well done.
                       _
Aaron Toponce         ( )  ASCII Ribbon Campaign www.aarontoponce.org   X   www.asciiribbon.org
                      / 

I think this conversation is an irrelevant debate. if you want to join an Ubuntu-LoCo and push another OS that seems just silly. If you have an active LUG in your area then work with them or start a local group to accomplish what you wish. The Ubuntu LoCo’s do spread the word about OSS and do help others out but their main focus is spreading the word about and supporting Ubuntu. I think pushing another OS with Ubuntu’s resources would not be good. I joined Ubuntu-LoCo because I loved Ubuntu and wanted to support it. I am also involved with the area LUG as are some of the other LoCo members and I represent Ubuntu there as well.
Remember it’s not a LoCo Group it is an UBUNTU LoCo group.

So in conclusion to all of this Ubuntu does not want to share resources. They only want to push Ubuntu. Another words all LUGS that want to push other distros are excluded from the LoCo community. Unless of course you listen to be a LUG that primarily supports Ubuntu. I’m not sure I want to join the Ubuntu Federation with one mind and one voice that is a closed mind. That just my opinion.

Update got another reply from someone who evedently does not know who I am.

Um no I have a group of people here in Pomeroy that meet and learn about Linux from me. I am the group leader.

Anthony Yarusso <tonyyarusso@comcast.net> wrote:

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Hash: SHA1

Pomeroy Lab wrote:

> Ok then by that definition I’m probably a LUG because I promote
> everything.

Actually, that’s not true. either. What was said about the difference
between LUGs and Ubuntu Local Community Teams is all true. However,
you are neither. A LoCo is what I just said, an Ubuntu Local
Community *TEAM*. A LUG is a Linux User *GROUP*. You are an
individual. Individuals are members of LoCos and LUGs and are what
make them what they are, but in no case can an individual BE either of
these organizations, or even the primary force behind one.
Individuals of course can do some similar activities as the groups
might organize, and will do their own advocacy on the side, but that
is not the same as acting or being recognized as a LoCo or a LUG.
I’ve noticed “I” being used a few times in your communications, and
just wanted to make sure that was completely clear before we continue
this discussion further. If what you really meant was “hey, I do this
kind of advocacy; how can I get involved?”, then you should definitely
be looking into being an individual member of bother the Washington
state LoCo (for when your activities revolve around Ubuntu) and the
nearest LUG (for everything else). Regardless, good luck and best
wishes in your advocacy efforts!

– – Tony Yarusso
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Another Update Ubuntu is talking about forming a LoCo council and accepting donations.

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Jono Bacon wrote:
> Hi all,
> 
> One of the things I have discussed for a while is the idea of a LoCo
> Teams Council - this will be a council to help govern and run the
 LoCo
> community as a whole. The aim of the council will be to:
> 
>  * provide a governing body that people can take decisions on the
 wider
> LoCo community, and be representative of that community.
>  * approve / reject resource requests, removing the bottlenecks that
 we
> have experienced recently.
>  * a place for teams to take conflict issues to.
>  * a forum in which the future plans and direction of the project can
 be
> discussed and debated.
> I have written up a document outlining the functions of the council
 at
> https://wiki.ubuntu.com/LoCoTeams/LoCoCouncil - it is largely derived
> from the Forums/IRC councils in how core chunks work.
> 
> Please head over and read it and post comments in this thread - don't
> edit the page directly, this way I can merge in the changes.
> 
> 	Jono

It appears I lost the message about the donations but I will try to get another one shortly.

2 Responses to “A report on Ubuntu LoCo. 09/28/07”

  1. The problem with pushing one and only one distribution is that should that ultimately fail (and in the eyes of a lot of everyday users, it wouldn’t take much), any system with the word Linux in it or runs the Linux kernel would be viewed with suspicion.

    I like Ubuntu as a distro. However, there does need to be more open-mindedness concerning other distributions, which is why there should be groups or individuals out there that have a top 5 list for themselves on what could be tried on a person’s computer…. Why 5? Simple: Ubuntu is good, but it will not work on all computers. The new Asus notebook I have courtesy of Justin’s Computer Rescue business would not take Fedora, Ubuntu, PCLinuxOS or the other distros out there, except one: Mint. Mint 3.0 Cassandra was the only one that worked on it, so he kept that in there, and I have been running it ever since.

    Ubuntu is not the end all be all, nor should any distro be classified as such. Doing so would be quite foolish.

  2. But you simply don’t understand. You see resistance is futile and everyone will soon be using Ubuntu because as they say it’s the most popular OS out there. Just check http://www.distrowatch.com and see for yourself that it’s number 2 on the list. (2 must really mean 1) And of course Ubuntu is the answer because it just is. I mean you have to be on drugs not to think Ubuntu is the solution for everyone. Come on we don’t need other distros competing with Ubuntu to help them get ideas and move ahead. We just need to help them by convincing Bill Gates to run the Ubuntu Federation. I mean why not? Vista is obviously a piece of junk and Ubuntu works on most computers so if Microsoft would just buy Ubuntu out and agree to the GPLv3 then we could have Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Edubuntu, all free and a hybrid that runs all Vista, XP, and Ubuntu Debian packages called Microbuntu. Now the only problem with Microbuntu is that it will have the DRM and Trusted Computing that allows Microsoft to view what we are doing and that will slow the system down but it’s a necessary precaution to help keep us safe. We can tell Ubuntu is popular because there are viruses being written for it now so that must mean that it’s the next big thing. It will be compatible with both Vista and Ubuntu viruses so hopefully you can just make a virus that runs in the Microsoft applications like MSN messenger that will then target parts of the OS. Then after we get Microbuntu made and licensed we can just release a virus for XP so people won’t want to use it any more, oh wait Microsoft already did that. No one will want to use Vista so we can just let that die out. As for Mac we can just incorporate MOL and run it too. After all Microsoft owns a lot of Macintosh stock. This new hybrid system will be more like what PC users are use to because it will have all of the features of Windows like viruses, crashes, and bugs that can only be fixed by the Microbuntu team and there will be very limited 3D desktop effects because that didn’t work with Microsoft software before, we will also have Kernel panics to replace BSODs. Besides that like Bill Gates said since Microsoft has invested the most money in their software it must be the best right? Who could ever make something for free that actually works? We need tech support that costs us money. Lets get brand new Dells with Microbuntu installed on them and pay for the extended tech support from Ubuntu. Microsoft and Ubuntu can both make money off of this and we can outsource the tech support. I think this is a very good way for the Ubuntu community to pursue it’s future. Don’t you?

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