Executive Committee Meeting Minutes
|Thursday September 19
Total attendance: 20 of 24 voting members
|Since 75% of the EC's 24 voting members were present, the EC was quorate on this day
|Friday September 20
Total attendance: 19 of 24 voting members
|Since 75% of the EC's 24 voting members were present, the EC was quorate on this day
See the Action Item tracking file.
Heather presented the usual EC stats.
Heather presented a report from the PMO covering the following topics:
Heather reported on PMO efforts to clean up the membership database. Due to a variety of factors (acquisitions, mergers, resignations, unwillingness to pay the membership fees) the number of corporate members (both paying and licensee) has been reduced to less than 100. We discussed strategies for recruiting new corporate members. Steve Harris suggested that joint marketing/PR with corporate members might be an incentive. Patrick responded that the PMO used to do marketing activities in the past but was no longer staffed to do so. He promised to investigate whether we might be able to work jointly with Oracle's PR team. Mike DeNicola suggested that we offer free membership to those who recruit others. Don Deutsch pointed out that each corporate member represents many developers, so the raw numbers are somewhat misleading. Bruno Souza suggested that we need more corporate "Java User" companies such as Goldman Sachs and Credit Suisse. Zach Shelby noted that ARM should now be classified as a Java user as well as a platform vendor. Ben Evans suggested that a program like Adopt-a-JSR but targeted at corporations might be helpful. Heather reiterated that the membership fee is a barrier for many potential corporate members. Werner Keil noted that proposed lower fees for smaller companies might alleviate this problem.
Heather outlined the PMO's plans for JavaOne. See the presentation for details.
Heather explained that all but two of the currently-Active JSRs (excluding those that have already one final) are operating under JCP 2.8 or JCP 2.9. The two that have not migrated are JSR 302: Safety Critical Java Technology and JSR 333: Content Repository API for Java Technology 2.1. We agreed that since JSR 333 is almost finished it does not matter much whether or not they adopt the new transparency requirements, but we encouraged the PMO to try again to persuade the JSR 302 Spec Lead to migrate.
Heather provided a status update on the EC elections. See jcp.org for the latest status.
Heather, Bruno Souza, and Ben Evans provided an update on the Adopt-a-JSR program, partly in response to Action Item April 2013-04. Bruno Souza emphasized the importance of reaching out to those for whom English is not their native language - the program can be very helpful here. It was noted that interest in Java ME is significantly less than in Java SE and Java EE, and that interest is greatest between Public Review and Final Release. Bruno pointed out that when the Spec Lead draws up a list of "things to do" this significantly increases participation.
We once again noted how difficult it is to get hard data about peoples' participation. (Many people think that what they do "doesn't count".) We agreed that we need to give more public recognition to those who do participate.
Greg Luck gave a presentation on JSR 107: JCACHE - Java Temporary Caching API, initiating a lively discussion among members, primarily about the technical content of the JSR. In summarizing the "social" information from the presentation Greg concluded that the JSR is alive and well, and that there is good participation from the community.
Ben Evans briefly reported on the results of a survey conducted by the London Java Community. We noted with concern the fact that of the 257 people who responded to the question If you’ve not participated in the JCP what is the reason? 85% said that they did not know how. Despite discussion we did not come to any conclusions about how to resolve this problem though we did agree that a future survey should probe more deeply into this issue, and we suggested that the EC as a whole should be involved in drawing up questions for a follow-on survey.
Members agreed that the experiment of meeting in the Bay Area just before JavaOne had worked well, and proposed to do the same in 2014. (The meeting would therefore be held on Thursday and Friday September 25-26.)
Although we had tentatively agreed to meet in London in January 2014, members instead suggested that we also schedule the January meeting in the Bay Area, adjacent to Oracle's User Group Summit meeting, at which many Java User Group leaders will be present. Patrick reported that the User Group Summit will be held on Wednesday and Thursday January 22-23. Since Monday of that week is Martin Luther King Day this would make it very difficult to schedule a two-day meeting adjacent to that one. Patrick agreed to talk to the organizers of the Summit to see if there is any flexibility in their schedule. In the meantime, assuming that something could be worked out, we agreed that we would meet in London on May 13-14.
Zach Shelby, who will be replacing Paul Manfrini as ARM's primary EC rep, gave a presentation on ARM's plans for open standards for the Internet of Things. He explained that ARM expects in the future to become more involved in the JCP, and to promote and participate in new JSRs to support this emerging market.
Bruno Souza informed EC members of a report on Java User Groups in Brazil which contains some interesting information about the history of JUGs in Brazil, and about the life-cycle that JUGs go through.
Patrick led a discussion on IP-related matters, building on the work done by the IP Working Group. We focused on Essential Patents, and after much discussion concluded that our previous proposal - to replace the current wording in Section 6 with a looser obligation requiring only that members disclose Essential Patents of which they have personal knowledge - would be unworkable in practice. Instead, Mike Milinkovich proposed to replace the current Section 6 language with a defensive license termination clause. Members were generally sympathetic to this proposal, but recognized that further discussion within the EC and with their own lawyers would be necessary.
Details of the discussion and the proposal have been incorporated into version 7 of the IP Flow document. (See the sections labeled Discussion at the September f2f meeting and Proposal from Mike Milinkovich.)
Heather Vancura and Bruno Souza presented a summary of the IP Working Group's activities, and led a lively discussion on the following topics:
We asked whether Java User Groups that are not legal entities should be permitted to join as Full members. Gil Tene argued that they should not even be permitted to join as Affiliate members since they cannot legally sign a contract. After discussion we decided that it makes no sense for even legal-entity JUGs to sign the JSPA (or any other legal agreement) since they are unable to make the kind of IP commitments that corporations or individuals do. We should recognize that the relationship between a JUG and the JCP is more like a Memorandum of Understanding. We agreed to create yet another "membership agreement" for JUGs. This would not include language relating to IP commitments, but instead would focus on the agreement to jointly promote the interests of Java, the JCP, and the JUG through programs like Adopt-a-JSR.
Gil Tene once again argued that the proposal for "weighted voting" is unfair to individual Java developers who are consumers rather than producers of or contributors to Java technologies. Our proposed new membership structure will prohibit almost all individuals (including many current signatories) from signing the JSPA. They will therefore be effectively disenfranchised.
It was pointed out that the current proposal is not a true "weighted vote" since it would give 20% of the total voting weight to Affiliate members no matter how many of them vote - and correspondingly, 80% of the voting weight to Full members no matter how few of them vote. True weighted voting would give votes to Affiliate and Full members in proportion to the number of people actually voting (that is, each Affiliate vote would be worth a specific fraction - 20% for example - of a Full vote).
We agreed to take up this topic again in the Working Group, and to reconsider some of the other voting proposals that had been previously discussed.
Scott Jameson pointed out that HP employees would be prohibited from signing any kind of contributor agreement because of the IP commitments made in HP's employment contracts. If the same applied to the majority of American employees then the new Affiliate membership class might not solve our problems.
Patrick thanked ARM for hosting the meeting. We then adjourned.