Political and Policy Advocacy

I thought that this being my first foray into the blog world that I would like to address something that is important not only to CLUE but also to other FOSS projects. I am most familiar with OpenOffice.org and its deployment via the Ontario Ministry of Education. This is a significant change for the government to go to Open Source after initially choosing StarOffice.

Okay now to get to the point which is that the Ontario government itself is not considering using OpenOffice.org but is sticking with MSO. To me this is a waste of your and my tax dollars and should be remedied. How? By each of us who use and work with Open Source to lobby our government representives. I started with my MPP, David Caplan, some time ago and will meet again with him, even though I moved from the constituency, to give him charts and spreadsheets that demonstrate that the cost of moving in this direction would cost about half of what it costs annually with the present choice.

You can do this too. By writing letters, visiting, going to community meetings where politician are attending and asking the questions:

  • Why are you wasting our tax dollars?
  • Why are commercial vendors given preference in bidding?
  • Why are you using software that produces files in a proprietary format when there is software that produces files in an international standard format that is mroe secure?

Well you get the idea. Doing these little things on a local level is important and very doable. Let's use discuss@linux.ca to see what we little people can do.

ger