Re: FIXimate download link missing
John Cameron / Cameron Edge <>
15 Dec 2011 6:08PM ET
I line up alongside Hanno's comments on this.
Regarding your other concerns, I don't believe that there is anything mysterious or hidden about FPL. See, for example, the FPL Corporate Governance page on the website (http://www.fixprotocol.org/corpgov) and, in particular, the excellent document entitled "FPL Corporate Structure FAQs" (http://www.fixprotocol.org/documents/6053/FPL%20Corporate%20Structure%20FAQs_final.pdf) which has been recently updated.
I have been lucky enough in my business life to become financially independent. I work for myself so I am free to say or do whatever I choose. I choose to support FPL by being a member. I am also proud to be part of that group of people like Hanno (and yourself in earlier days) who donate their time and effort to FPL because they believe in FIX.
A year or two ago I was elected to the board of FPL. During my time on the board I have never seen evidence of the fears that you express. FPL is full of people who believe in an open, free and independent FIX - as you do. If ever I see any signs of that being threatened, I will be shouting it from the rooftops and fighting it any way I can. And I know that I won't be alone.
You may suggest in your response to this posting that I am corrupt, or naive, or ignorant. I am none of these. I believe that you are seeing conspiracies where there are none. I urge you to become an FPL member again and join us in protecting and evolving FIX. It would be good to have you back.
> I have been anything but silent on the subject of how FPL should fund itself. When the website was revamped several years ago - an effort I happily and actively served as a volunteer - and the job board, site sponsorships, new document-access controls, and the like were implemented (with my help), I was quite vocal about membership tiers and benefits specifically and how FPL should fund itself generally. Some of my suggestions were taken, others not, and in any event, the membership proposition has changed since, without my involvement. Like you, I have invested an extraordinary amount of time free of charge toward the advancement of FIX as an industry standard.
> FPL has always been short of volunteers willing to do real work and see projects through to completion. When I was most actively involved in FIX, over a period of many years, a significant portion of this work was performed by volunteers like myself who were unaffiliated with member firms. Apparently some petty and short-sighted member firms did not like such volunteers having a strong or visible hand in the direction of the protocol and sought to restrict their access to resources and involvement. For a long time I was unofficially "grandfathered," but that ended soon after I complained publicly about the recent hijacking of FPL by TARP babies.
> While I continue to use and support the FIX protocol, I no longer support or respect the GSC as such as a governing body or caretaker for the protocol. The GSC has moved in a dark direction. And other than answering questions for industry colleagues when I can, I will not contribute ideas, money, or work product to FPL when the very ownership of the protocol remains a mystery and while my questions and concerns about the hijacking of the protocol remain unanswered. In other words, you figure out how to fund the beast, as long as it remains a beast.
> I will note that you failed to answer my substantive objections to the reasoning behind withholding FIX tools, such as Word copies of documents, from users or interested parties who are not member firms.
> You're a superb contributor to FIX, Hanno, and I have learned a lot from you over the years. You're on the wrong side of this discussion, though.
> > John,
> > it does not, it is my personal opinion as an FPL member even though I am also a member of the GSC. Thank you for your contribution which was to be expected. Maybe it leads to a debate with non-FPL members as to how FPL should fund itself. You were surprisingly silent on that part. It is always easy to complain about other people's decisions without offering an alternative. My decision to invest a lot of my time into the FIX Protocol free of charge for FPL is based on my belief that it helps to reduce the overall cost to the finance industry for doing business. Unfortunately, the tools and artefacts you are so eager to provide to everybody for free do have an associated cost. The number of active volunteers for FPL like myself is very limited. I would like FPL to continue to be able to offer tools and artefacts. Your criticism will not help to achieve that. Again, that is my personal view.
> > Regards,
> > Hanno.
> > > To the extent your explanation represents the actual reasoning of the Global Steering Committee, Hanno, the reasoning is terrible and leads only to counterproductive - and destructive - results.
> > >
> > > Aside from the sheer pettiness of withholding tools "that can reduce effort for the user," actions by FPL members that delay, frustrate, impede, or otherwise raise the cost of establishing and maintaining FIX communications are tantamount to cutting off their noses to spite their faces.
> > >
> > > How much revenue do trading firms lose, or how much higher are their operating costs, if they delay by even a month the initiation of FIX order flow from a systematic trading firm?
> > >
> > > This kind of membership-sales stunt could only be perpetrated by people unfamiliar with Bastiat's Parable of the Broken Window, or the lessons he conveys in the parable. They are people who see only one side of an equation, or who misunderstand network effects.
> > >
> > > As long as we're on the subject, are we still withholding specs in Word format from the unwashed masses? What a joke. But this joke is on the member firms.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > > > FIXimate is very good tool, its a bit of a shame though to make this available to FPL members alone, sounds contrary to the usual "FIX spirit" of the website.
> > > >
> > > > FIX is and will remain a free protocol but this does not necessarily apply to all the tools developed by FPL that can reduce effort for the user. This is funded by FPL members who are entitled to know why they should pay membership fees. FPL does not work on the basis of money being donated. There are only a few hundred FPL members compared to the tens of thousands of FIX users out there around the world. The limited funds have allowed FPL to provide great tools such as FIXimate, the FIX Repository, FIXML Schema and FIXwiki. Some of the tools were originally developed by FPL members and then donated to FPL. FPL could do much more in this area if more than a fraction of FIX users were also members. Model driven application development is a key area where you can save a lot of effort (=money) through the use of repositories and tools. It only seems fair to give some of these savings back to FPL in the form of membership fees.
> > > > Thanks for listening,
> > > > Hanno.