The eglug.org charter
The Bahram Document
Article 1 - Title
The title of the group is The Egyptian GNU/Linux Users Group - مجموعة مستخدمى جنو/لينكس فى مصر.
The lug shall be referred to as EGLUG - جنو/لينكس مصر
the domain name of the group shall be eglug.org
Article 2 - Why Does EGLUG.org exist
- To promote the use of Free/Open Source Software in general and GNU/Linux in particular within Egypt
- To provide support for GNU/Linux and Free/Open Source Software users and contributors in Egypt
- To build a thriving, proactive and friendly community of GNU/Linux and Free/Open Source Software users.
- To communicate and cooperate with other Free/Open Source groups and organization and be part of the international Free/Open source community.
Article 3 - Membership
There are no costs for membership. Membership shall be open to all, Only requirement is accepting this charter, anyone who has an account in the eglug.org website is considered a member.
All members are bound by this charter.
Active members will be designated Senior Members through a transparent, fair, objective and preferably automated process described in the MemberClassAssignmentPolicy
Senior Members don't have more rights, but are empowered with direct access to more eglug.org resources without having to go through moderators and administrators.
Article 4 - Basic Principles
- EGLUG is a democratic community; all members have the right to voice their opinion and give input and feedback, and to contribute to the decision making process, all members are equal and have equal rights to be heard.
- EGLUG is a transparent community; All members have the right to know each and every detail about EGLUG and its activities, no secret decisions shall be made and no secret process shall be used to reach any decision. All EGLUG rules and policies shall be public, well known in advance and reached to through an open democratic process, Members have the right to monitor all actions taken by moderators and administrators.
- EGLUG is a volunteer community and it lives by personal initiative. The members have the right to propose ideas and activities concerning Free/Open Source Software to the community and to develop these ideas and lead projects which the community finds useful, productive and interesting.
- EGLUG has no imposed leaders; the administrators and moderators exist only to provide technical support for keeping the website up and functioning smoothly. If leadership is required at any point it is to be temporary and with a strictly defined duration and purpose.
- No rule, activity decision or moderation action shall violate, contradict or compromise this charter.
Article 5 - Moderators
The moderator's primary responsibility is to ensure the content of the eglug.org site does not violate the AcceptableUsePolicy and to maintain and organize the site according to the EditorialPolicy in order to ensure that eglug.org remains accessible and useful to all its members.
Moderators shall also interfere in disputes arising between members to ensure the dispute never becomes hostile.
Moderators are expected to facilitate and encourage member contribution and to empower members to participate in all aspects of the eglug.org website.
The composition of the moderators team shall be determined through a transparent and democratic process as described in the MemberClassAssignmentPolicy.
Article 6 - Administrators
The administrator is a person who has the ultimate responsibility for the eglug.org website, administrators hold the keys and passwords to the website account and are responsible for implementing and maintaining the technical requirements of the community.
Administrators are also charged with ensuring the use of eglug.org resources complies with the ResourcesUsagePolicy, failure to do so by an administrator shall be considered a a violation of their mandate and shall be dealt with as described in the MemberClassAssignmentPolicy.
The duties and responsibilities of administrators include the duties of moderators as described in Article 5 of this document.
Administrators shall not implement changes that affect the existing core functionality of the eglug website without first seeking the approval of the community through an open and democratic process as described in Article 7 of this document.
The composition of the administrators team shall be determined through a transparent and democratic process as described in the MemberClassAssignmentPolicy.
Article 7 - Voting and decision making
Voting is the fundamental process that ensures the democratic nature of EGLUG an administrator's or moderator's failure to implement this process is considered a violation of their mandate and shall be handled as described in the MemberClassAssignmentPolicy.
All members are eligible to vote on all decisions, except small decisions concerning a single event or activity, in that case only members participating in the event/activity are eligible to vote.
What gets voted on
Voting matters shall initially be discussed within the community, a matter is approved for voting if it is presented on the website with 27 approvals, to simplify the process each senior user approval counts as 3 approvals, and each moderator/administrator approval counts as 9 approvals.
Minimum number of votes for a poll to be considered valid shall be 51% the number of senior users, moderators and administrators.
When a matter is approved for vote, it will be posted as a poll by an administrator or moderator within 48 hours of approval> All eglug members will be alerted to the poll through reasonable means, an announcement shall be published on the eglug.org homepage, and the poll will remain open for at least 10 days.
A request for vote can include within a request for a longer polling period, approval of the request shall be taken to mean approval of the proposed polling period.
If the minimum number of votes is not reached by the end of the polling period, the poll remains open for another polling period.
If after the second polling period the minimum number of votesis not reached yet, this shall be considered a sign that active members are being alienated, the whole community shall embark on a discussion of the roots of the problem.
if throught the discussion the community agrees on the importance of reaching a descision on the voting matter, the poll remains open for a third voting period the result of the poll after the 3 periods is sufficient.
A two third majority in the poll will be considered conclusive. All votes are equal.
In case polling period passes without reaching a two third majority the option with the least votes is removed from the poll and the poll is repeated, when the number of choices is down to two. failure to reach majority shall be considered a sign of discord within the community, the whole community shall then embark on a discussion to resolve the differences.
through the discussion the community may agree to repeat the last poll as is with no changes using the voting approval procedure, if after the repeat two third majority is not reached a simple majority is sufficient.
Article 8 - Amendments
The charter will come up for optional review once every year.
The procedure shall be as follows.
- A discussion is started on the 10th of July where members can voice issues and problems with the charter along with proposed amendments.
- The discussion is closed on the 20th of July and a poll is opened to determine whether any issues raised warrant a charter review.
- After the poll is over, the administrators, moderators and senior users are responsible for producing alternate versions of the amended charter in an open and inclusive process, they shall solicit feedback from the rest of the community.
- When an ammended charter is ready a poll is opened to ratify the charter.
- if by the end of August no new charter has been proposed for ratification the old version is preserved for another year.
Appendix A - Versions of this document
The Charter is expected to evolve slowly over time. The different versions are given names of individuals whom the community feels have contributed meaningfully to the existence of the group specifically and Free/Open Source Software in particular in Egypt. Acting administrators and moderators shall not be considered for naming.
- Bahram: Mr Hesham Bahram is considered the spiritual founder of Linux Egypt and provided the initial impetus to organize.
- First draft issued on the 3th of May 2004.
- Second draft issued on the 5th of June 2004.