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O'Reilly Network: Tim O'Reilly : How the Peer-to-Peer Working Group Ought to Be Organized

Oct 13, 2000, 22:06 (5 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Tim O'Reilly)

"Yesterday, at the first meeting of their proposed Peer-to-Peer working group (attended by over 300 people) Intel proposed an organization for the group that was shocking in its distrust of the very decentralization that peer-to-peer is supposed to enable."

"The proposed structure is best described as "pay to play", an industry consortium model in which the amount of money you contribute to the organization determines the level of your influence. A seven member steering committee, defined not by technical excellence or vision, but by the $25,000 admission fee, will be the final arbiter of standards. For $5000, you earn the right to chair a technical committee and vote on technical issues. For $500, you may participate in a committee by invitation, attend group events, and review (but not vote on) draft standards. In a sop to participation, two of the steering group members would be elected from the $5000 members."

"I stood up in the meeting yesterday and asked for the sense of the group whether this proposal was going in the wrong direction, and was met with thunderous applause. Intel agreed to go back and think some more about the structure, and came back after lunch with a new idea: that they'd accept submissions about alternate structures, and would decide which of the proposals might be best."

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