BCS rebels apologise ahead of crunch meeting
Place your bets now
The rebel group opposed to recent changes at the British Computer Society have issued an apology to Ken Olisa, a BCS trustee who had accused the rebels of libel.
The rebels have removed a previous message questioning the management of the BCS and made clear it was a general criticism and not aimed at Olisa personally.
The BCS's attempt to update itself by rebranding as "the Chartered Institute for IT - Enabling the Information Society" and alter its future direction has led to fury from some members.
Rebel members have pushed for an Extraordinary General Meeting which will be held tomorrow at BCS headquarters in Southampton Street, London. It is a chance for its 70,000 members to approve or condemn recent changes.
Votes can be made in person, by post (if you're quick) or online. Members will decide on calling a temporary halt to the change programme, and a vote of no confidence in current management.
The rebels, who claim several senior figures and an ex-president of the group, insist that the £5m "Transformation" programme has not been approved by the BCS Advisory Council and the Council's questions on the scheme have still not been answered.
The BCS declined to comment ahead of the meeting, but promised us a full update tomorrow after the vote.
In the past the organisation has defended the £5m rebranding scheme as part of a process which aims to improve the status of the IT industry and and aid members' careers.
The Chartered Institute for IT - Enabling Waffle Waffle Waffle
The British Computer Society is a fantastic name. A great example of plain English. The proposed rebranding sounds like it was dreamt up by a committee of MBA waving recent graduates who couldn't accomplish any IT task more difficult than opening an email attachment.
BCS is pointless
As a computer scientist, the BCS is irrelevant and an embarrassment. It is a business manger group that gives letters for money and has nothing to do with computation. It should be closed down and replaced with something more like the Institute of Physics.
Stats say Fail, but reality says Win
Well on paper they were never going to win - although no-one has checked the figures (which aren't consistent) with the Electoral Reform services yet.
So status quo - or is it?
One can only hope the EGM provided them with a real kick up the rear end - although the arrogance of the hierarchy would suggest to the contrary.
Once a Fellow
As one of a group of ex-Fellows of the BCS, I can honestly say it was the easiest thing to become a member. Simply made a call and was asked for a cheque. End off.
Under the new CEO, after 2004, in order to bolster numbers absolutely anyone was allowed in this gentlemans club - very many with no background in IT or significance in the industry at all.
Strategically, it worked. In 5 years, the numbers doubled - 35,000 newbies, most of whom are unqualified in comparison to their predecessors. SHAME.
It's a pointless group of self-interested individuals who barely represent reality never mind the IT industry, so like very many, I soon realised that this was a meaningless membership and in the immortal words of Groucho Marx:
"I wouldn’t want to belong to any club that would have me as a member"
I didn't vote
... because I couldn't decide between the two after reading the two arguments.
I have to say though that I think the BCS has been quite good recently (thanks to some of the specialist groups). And as I work in ITSM the business side seems relevant to me. It's not meant to be a hobby club I don't think.