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Election news – the open source angle 2: questions for the Bristol mayor

After looking over the Channel at the forthcoming Belgian local authority and provincial elections (news passim), we’re coming a bit closer to home.

It cannot have escaped the attention of any Bristolian who hasn’t been in a coma for many months that an election will take place in November to select an elected mayor for Bristol.

Needless to say, we open source advocates would also be interested to hear what the 13 candidates declared to date say about matters of concern to us.

We would therefore like to ask the candidates the following questions:

  1. Re free and open source software: the city council currently exports lots of taxpayers’ money abroad by spending it on proprietary operating systems and software. Will you commit to reducing this expenditure during your term of office by moving the council increasingly towards the use of free and open source software?
  2. Re open data: the city council currently releases certain data (e.g. expenditure data) free for re-use by others. However, much of the material produced by the council is still covered by copyright. Will you give a commitment to release as much council material as possible for free use under an open licensing scheme, such as Creative Commons?
  3. Re free/open internet: free internet access is available at many city council buildings and locations around the city. Are you committed to extending and improving free internet coverage for the benefit of Bristolians?

Candidates are free to give their answers in the comments below.

5 Responses to Election news – the open source angle 2: questions for the Bristol mayor

  1. Dr Jon Rogers October 7, 2012 at 8:27 pm #

    (2) Re open data:

    Again, I will continue to encourage as much open data as possible. Some data is held in commercial confidence, and some data seems to be in difficult formats, making extraction difficult and confusing, but I am a strong believer in open data, and am proud of the work we have done with GIS mapping, making information more accessible.

  2. Dr Jon Rogers October 7, 2012 at 8:32 pm #

    (3) Re free/open internet:

    Bristol has been leading the way in internet and wifi access. We own extensive B net cabling, which we use for wifi hot spots and traffic signalling as well as offering good internet access at libraries and other public buildings.

    If elected I will continue to expand such free access.

  3. Dr Jon Rogers October 9, 2012 at 8:11 am #

    Morning Steve.

    These replies seem to have been shortened and altered. I guess it is because I added links to relevant outside web sites, such as the Bristol City Council solar mapping.

    I only used the HTML tags indicated below 🙁



    • Steve Woods October 9, 2012 at 8:41 am #


      Your replies have not been edited in any way.

      They were approved exactly as they were found waiting for moderation, including enthusiastic use of the bold tags.