[linux-elitists] Fwd: Washington DC - Great Effort Folks! [ruben@mrbrklyn.com] [ruben@mrbrklyn.com]

Linux Elites linux-elitists@zgp.org
Fri Feb 22 04:28:48 PST 2002


On 2002.02.22 03:23 Ruben I Safir wrote:

On 2002.02.22 03:14 Ruben I Safir wrote:
Hello ALL NYLXSers, NY Fair Users, and hard working volunteers of all
other local free software organizations.

I want to give full and proper credit in public to everyone for their
dedication, hard work, and focused attention to the great and
important fair use and free software issues of our day.  I can not
express in any way or make clear to those who are not part of our
group, just how hard these people work, how dedicated their actions
are, and the great good they are achieving in paving the way for Free
Software, and an free open society in the digital age.

However, understanding that, I want to give a small picture of their hard
work and what was accomplished on the Washington trip.

Richard Weinberg, Vice-President of NYLXS, got a phone call from me about
1:00 pm the day before we were to go to DC.  I was in a panic.  I had
forgotten that the banks were closed on Presidents' Day and it seemed
possible that we would not be able to get the cash needed to go to DC.
Richard was up in Westchester, and I told him the situation.  He
volunteered his Credit Card and Driver's License to drive us down.  To do
this, he immediately left for NYC and called me when he arrived in NYC.
Marcus Conti, another board member, was working on the specific details of
getting a van.  Until that was known, we had no idea if we were going to be
able to get to DC.  By the time Richard hit NYC, Marcus had the reservation
made, and everything was ready for the morning.  The first crisis was over.

At midnight that night, half the mailing list was abuzz about not having
the details for the trip (although they were posted on the Calender).  At
12:30 am the morning of the trip, I'm on the phone, making sure everyone is
together, and set for leaving at 8:30 am.  At 7:30 am, Richard shows up at
my door in Flatbush, and we head to Boro Park to get the truck.  Everything
goes smoothly, and we drive the van to my house.  Everyone is just about
ready, and Paul Rodriguez, Joe Grastara, Seth Johnson, Forrest Mars,
Richard Weinberg, and I (Ruben Safir), are all packed up and ready to go.

Richard puts in a heroic driving effort, ten hours in the day, and we get
down to the Baltimore Area, where I try to call down to DC and remind them
of our appointment with the Staff member from Weiner's Office, Lamar
Robertson, who is in charge of staff work on Intellectual Property for
Representative Weiner.  Weiner is on the IP subcommittee of the Judiciary
Committee of the house.  We call information on the cell phone, and
information never HEARD of Congress in a city called Washington DC, let
alone any individual representatives.  So we call the NYC office and have
them patch us to the Washington Office.  Our direct phone line to Lamar's
office is getting a recording.  So we try to get to the staff.  Lamar is
home with his new born baby doing emergency child care.  So finally the
Representative Weiners Chief of Staff, Kevin A. Ryan, meets with us.  We
meet for about an hour and a half, in Weiner's office, the crowd sitting
around the table.  We laid out all our Software issues, and Fair Use
issues, we discussed the DMCA, how Free Software is under assault legally,
how libraries are affected, how my playing an MP3 on my Picture Book with
GNU/Linux can be considered a felony under the DMCA in the Future,
Pat Schroeder and world hunger, and Vital Books and NYU.  We request that
Representative Weiner become more outspoken on this issue, and align
himself with Boucher.  And as we leave, Lamar Robertson invites us to his
home in Maryland.  Walking out of the office, Paul looks up and sees a Tivo
TV system on top of the door.  Paul points it out, and Kevin Ryan says "The
Congressman loves the TiVo.".  We underscored that the TiVo is exactly the
kind of fair use device, which runs free software, and which is being torn
apart by the current copyright standards, and the DMCA.


We take Lamar up on his offer.  We pick up 2 bottles of Chivas Regal and
head to his home.  We spend 4 hours there with Lamar and his wife.  Lamar
has printed out an article from the New York times on the Supreme court
case involving the Sony Bono extension of Copyright, and we cover almost
the whole gamut of issues in detail.  Each of our members got a chance to
talk, and express their positions.  We point out that his printing out the
article is a fair use of information and copyrighted material.  We discuss
the political hurdles to fair use and Free Software in the future.  And we
discuss the inner working of the sub-committee.  I give Lamar a big Bear
Hug and an invitation to visit my home in Brooklyn, and we left knowing we
have made good friends in DC.  I think we will have a long and effective
relationship with the Congressman in the future.  I expect that we will be
going down to DC again in the future to testify and give support to their
efforts on the IP subcommittee.


We now need someone to followup with a thank you letter, and we need to
sharpen our issues to specific legislative requests.


Ruben




-- 
__________________________

Brooklyn Linux Solutions
__________________________
http://www.mrbrklyn.com - Consulting
http://www.brooklynonline.com - For the love of Brooklyn
http://www.nylxs.com - Leadership Development in Free Software
http://www.nyfairuse.org - The foundation of Democracy
http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/resources - Unpublished Archive or stories and articles from around the net
http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/mp3/sins.mp3 - C'est La Vie and a boy named Joe
http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/downtown.html - See the New Downtown Brooklyn....

1-718-382-5752



-- 
__________________________

Brooklyn Linux Solutions
__________________________
http://www.mrbrklyn.com - Consulting
http://www.brooklynonline.com - For the love of Brooklyn
http://www.nylxs.com - Leadership Development in Free Software
http://www.nyfairuse.org - The foundation of Democracy
http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/resources - Unpublished Archive or stories and articles from around the net
http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/mp3/sins.mp3 - C'est La Vie and a boy named Joe
http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/downtown.html - See the New Downtown Brooklyn....

1-718-382-5752



-- 
__________________________

Brooklyn Linux Solutions
__________________________
http://www.mrbrklyn.com - Consulting
http://www.brooklynonline.com - For the love of Brooklyn
http://www.nylxs.com - Leadership Development in Free Software
http://www.nyfairuse.org - The foundation of Democracy
http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/resources - Unpublished Archive or stories and articles from around the net
http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/mp3/sins.mp3 - C'est La Vie and a boy named Joe
http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/downtown.html - See the New Downtown Brooklyn....

1-718-382-5752






More information about the linux-elitists mailing list