2009/4/25 Thomas Dalton <thomas.dal...@gmail.com>:
> The law is fine, it's just being misapplied. Writing an encyclopaedia
> doesn't increase knowledge, it's a tertiary source, all the knowledge
> is already in existence. It disseminates knowledge, something I
> consider to be pretty synonymous with "education". I think at this
> point we need a lawyer. I'll look up that case and see if I can find
> the details, but really we need someone can that combat legal nonsense
> with more legal nonsense - I can only illegal nonsense!

I'm not sure I agree with the CC's decision, but it isn't a
particularly quixotic one in the context of existing charity law, and
I can see where it came from. Consider, for example, the notes at C4
here: http://www.charity-commission.gov.uk/publicbenefit/pbeduc.asp#c

"However, just giving people information is not necessarily educating
them. The key is whether it is provided in such a way (however
structured) that it is capable of educating them, rather than just
adding to factual information."

I think there are ways of interpreting this sort of thing so as to
encompass what we do, but it's not unreasonable for them to interpret
it differently. Note that there isn't really anything like us in any
of the lists of examples!

Approaching this from the position that the law is fundamentally being
misapplied, and we need to tell them they're Doing It Wrong, is
probably just going to set us up for some angry letters both ways, a
quick fall, and being filed as "vexatious" - and the last thing we
want is for us to blow the chance fully!

A more effective approach would, perhaps, be to closely compare our
submission to the regulations, and see if the use of a different
perspective on what we plan to do, or a broadening of our aims, would
perhaps fit more comfortably with the (slightly odd) letter of the
regulations. After all, we have to fit into charity law *as it exists*
if we're going to be a charity at all!

(...and on which note, hrm. if we're not a charity, what are the
practical implications of that? I assume with our small turnover it
wouldn't make a *vast* difference, but...)

- Andrew Gray

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