RossEvans wrote:The general scope of that policy has not changed. It still applies only to meetinghouse computers "unless otherwise stated," so there is still nothing that regulates software on leaders' personal computers.
This does not regulate what software can be on personal computers, but does regulate what can be used to handle church data.
To strongly limit what can be done with data on the church computer while giving free reign on personal computers makes no sense. I disagree with your interpretation.
It's not my interpretation. It is the express language of the document.
Section 2 of the document defines its scope to cover meetinghouses "unless otherwise stated." It does not say, "unless otherwise speculated or inferred in forum comments" or "unless it 'makes no sense' to a Community Administrator on the LDS Tech Forum."
When the authors chose to expand the scope to include "cloud-based services," they did so explicitly. (Wherever the "cloud" is, it surely does not reside in the meetinghouse computer, so this expanded scope is
otherwise stated within Section 4.9.4.) But there is not a scrap of language within Section 4.9.3 (the "third-part software" section) any other section of the document that makes it applicable to leaders' personal computers. It would only have taken a few words to expand the scope that way, but there is no such language
So I will follow the actual language of the official document, not whatever policy we think the Church should have written so that it "makes sense" in forum folklore.
BTW, even on Church computers I don't agree that the Meetinghouse Technology Policy "strongly limits" what can be installed to handle membership data, as you sweepingly claim. The phrase "third-party software" is expressly defined as a term of art
within the policy document (Section 3.11), so the provision of Section 4.9.3 only prohibits storing membership data in software "not approved for use on Church computers." But the Church policy of what is
approved is published elsewhere in RKATS, and that policy says (my boldface emphasis):
When it comes to third-party software, the Church recommends using free software applications like OpenOffice when possible to keep costs down and to reduce the burden of keeping license agreement records. There is no prohibition against purchasing third-party applications or receiving donations of software, as long as the unit adheres to the license agreements and keeps physical copies of the license certificates in the clerk’s office. In the case of donated software, the donor must provide the software license certificate and confirmation that they have either uninstalled the software from or have never installed it on other computers.
When purchasing software, copies of the proof of purchase must be emailed to ITAssetManagement@ldschurch.org
. Please include the unit number where the software will be used and the contact information of the individual who purchased it.
The software products listed below are optional, but have been used by many clerks. These products are free and do not require licenses. Other software products may be used as long as the guidelines above are followed.
That allows just about any software used for a gospel-related purpose, so long as it is properly licensed. That is really more permissive than the older policy that required stake presidents to approve each application installed.
The only major provision of the 2014 Meetinghouse Technology Policy that really does cut deeply into what units have been doing with membership data is Section 4.9.4 forbidding us to store this content in "cloud-based services." (There are a lot of Google Docs spreadsheets out there that are probably coloring outside the lines.) As far as the Google Maps Engine example being discussed in this thread, that provision is all we need to understand that it is out of bounds. Not because there is "third-party software" involved, but because "cloud-based services" are used.