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[liberationtech] [Re: was Secure hosted mail, now: VaultletSoft]

R. P. Ruiz r.p.ruiz at
Mon Feb 27 19:43:45 PST 2012


It's late, so I can't even begin to address Jacob's earlier substantive comments (maybe this weekend when I come up for air), nor can I muster up even an iota of umbrage to your well written but mildly hyperbolic statements of principles.  

I can say however, that I *do* understand what your getting at, w/o necessarily agreeing with your comments about the NDA (like I said, it's late, I'm burnt out and bone tired).  The simple explanation is that the NDA's a direct lift (based on lawyer's advice) of PGP's source code review license.

Now, whether you like PGP's source code review license is, of course, your choice.  And NDAs, all opinions aside as to whether you like them or not, are a part of most people's understanding of how olde-school for-profit companies work/worked.  Enough of that.

Now, here's a part of the story that you're probably not familiar with: I've been wanting to create an open source version of the entire stack for years now, and haven't been able to find *anybody* interested in helping to shoulder the burden (See this announcement from December 2009:  The response to the community of users I served, along w/ others in the NGO/HRD world was, not to put too fine a point on it, insanely underwhelming - they simply wanted to use it, not participate in creating it.

So while I haven't done anything w/ it along those lines, I'd still be happy to do so  - as long as others are willing to do some of the heavy lifting too.

Know anybody who'd be interested, or is all this talk about principles just shorthand for "not invented here/not really interested/too busy w/ other things"?

Really, at this point guys, it's okay to not be interested for whatever reason - I'm too tired to argue about it (kind of like Madeline Kahn in Bride of Frankenstein).  

If, on the other hand, you see the value of releasing and maintaining a completely Free and Open Source version, then let's do it.  

I'm off to bed,


R. P. Ruiz - President, Valeso
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> ---------------- Original Message ----------------
> From: jacob at
> To: brianc at
> Cc: liberationtech at
> Cc: r.p.ruiz at
> Cc: rguerra at
> Sent: 2/25/12 6:43 PM
> Subject: Re: [liberationtech] was Secure hosted mail, now: VaultletSoft
> On 02/25/2012 03:37 PM, Brian Conley wrote:
> > I'd just like to point out that NDAs are not dissimilar from me telling my
> > three year old daughter that of she doesn't eat her dinner the mukhabarat
> > are going to come and get her. Which is why I don't tell her that and why
> > generally NDAs are a pleasant fiction that allow us all to play nice when
> > really they are only slightly more tangible then cash.
> I mean, I understand that as much as anyone, I think. The problem is the
> intent and the implied hierarchy.
> In other words: Why do I want to play nice with someone who tries to set
> me up with a legal gag after I spend time helping them?
> Generally, I don't want to help with that dynamic and while an NDA is
> rarely worth the paper it is written on, the spirit is the offensive
> part of the entire ordeal.
> All the best,
> Jacob

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