There was a lot of good feedback in the previous thread about the Maryland Team's future activities. I've had some good discussion on the topic outside of the forums as welll, but I wanted to post a bit of an interesting article I read concerning LoCo activities. It's been noted that some LoCo members think that the LoCo communities are designed solely to promote, install, and support local installations of Ubuntu (as in, Maryland-only installations). This is only a small part of what a LoCo was designed to do (as originally envisioned by Jono Bacon, Canonical community manager).

Take a look at this article from Christer Edwards of Ubuntu Tutorials (you can find his blog aggregated on Planet Ubuntu). Notice that the quote below focuses not just on local action but on community-oriented activities that improve Ubuntu. The reason I'm bringing this up (again) is because I think some of our team are stuck in a LUG mindset and I think we need to be wary that our activities do not overlap those of most LUGs. Of course, this doesn't mean we can't work together with LUGs on some things. Unfortunately, I seem to be the only one on the Maryland Team who has even mentioned the possibility of fixing bugs and doing documentation as a team. I'm not sure if this is because there's a lack of interest in these activities (which is fine, if that's the case) or if it's because of a lack of awareness. As always, our team can do whatever we want to do. There are no "rules." I just want to make sure that everyone understands why the LoCo teams were created and that our activities can be more interactive and more fun than your run-o-the-mill advocacy and install fests.

I apologize if I seem like I'm being pushy about this. I just don't feel that this has been adequately addressed as a team (despite individual discussions here and there) and I think we should place it as a top priority at our next meeting.

I want to remind established and growing teams that the LoCo project is not here to replace existing Linux User Groups or Special Interest Groups. We are here to improve them. We are here to cooperate with them. We are here to support them in any use, distribution or education concerning Ubuntu and Free Software. We don’t need to create new framework and organizations as many of these already exist. We don’t and should not see ourselves as pioneers in advocating Linux, Free Software and Ubuntu. There are many that came before us. There are many that have put effort into organizing groups, arranging locations and building relationships with entities such as Universities and other public places. There are many that will come after us as well. Let us continue to build on the community around us and celebrate the local cultures and groups that exist.

As an Ubuntu LoCo Project I propose we need to get back to our roots. We need to cooperate and participate instead of try to build anew. Work with existing groups and make them stronger instead of build our own isolated communities.


What was the last bug you squashed? When was the last time you or your team collectively contributed to an Ubuntu Hug Day? When was the last bug you submitted? There are still hundreds of open bugs in the Ubuntu and related projects. This is a perfect and far-reaching opportunity for LoCo Teams to contribute and improve Ubuntu as a whole.

What was the last wiki or tutorial you wrote? When was the last time you or your team collectively improved the Ubuntu documentation? When was the last time you used the wiki at all? The Ubuntu Community Documentation ( can still be much improved. There are still hundreds of documents to be written and other documents to be improved or updated. Contributing, as a Team, to this project benefits Ubuntu as a whole.

When was the last time you worked supporting the Ubuntu Forums? Has your team organized Ubuntu Forums support days? Spending time helping new users or tackling the unanswered posts on the forums continues to educate Ubuntu users around the world.

Has your team contacted or presented at existing LUG meetings? Have you presented on Ubuntu at schools? Have you supported your local LUGS with install-fests (again, at their location, on their terms) when Ubuntu is to be available? Do you make yourselves available on existing LUG mailing lists to support Ubuntu wherever it comes up?