New life for the Open Source Initiative

Summary:OSI, an important, but long quiet, open-source organization is seeking to revitalize itself with a new membership program.

OSI

Portland, OR: There was a time that everyone in the Linux and open-source world knew about the Open Source Initiative (OSI). It was, and still is, the group which manages the Open Source Definition. This is the core open-source defining document for developers, governments, and businesses. All the other open-source licensees—Apache, BSD, GPL—all some of their legitimately to  the OSI. In recent years, though, the OSI has laid fallow. Now, it wants to change that and once more become a vital part of the open-source community.

At OSCon, the OSI announced that it would accepting applications for Individual Membership.The new Individual Membership category allows individuals who support the mission and work of the OSI to join discussions about that work, to be represented in the evolving governance of the OSI, and to spin up task-focused Working Groups to tackle open-source community needs. Individual Members are asked to make a tax-deductible donation to support the mission of OSI. You can find out more out OSI Individual Membership  at the site.

I asked Simon Phipps, OSI President, and long time open-source leader why someone would want to join the OSI considering how quiet the organization had been over the last few years. Phipps replied, “we looked at our mission statement on opensource.org and felt we needed to re-focus on what it says!"

The Open Source Initiative (OSI) is a non-profit corporation with global scope formed to educate about and advocate for the benefits of open source and to build bridges among different constituencies in the open source community.

Phipps continued, “To achieve that objective, we felt we had to open up as a member organization and turn the Board into facilitators for its members. Today's announcement is the second wave of that change; we expect to introduce corporate membership too at some point soon.”

It is his hope that “new members signing up from today will bring focused proposals for achievable concrete goals to the Board to endorse and facilitate. I'm expecting initiatives around global user groups, around education resources and around public policy activities.”

So. “Anyone who cares about open source should join now and help OSI take the next step. By joining, you will be involved in the conversation about OSI's evolution, you will be able to draw on OSI's resources to establish projects that advance open source and your donation will allow OSI to obtain the resources it needs to facilitate that evolution. In addition, I'm expecting us to add some great member benefits in the coming month with the help of OSI Affiliates and (in the future) Corporate Members.”

In conclusion, "The transformation of the OSI into a member-based organization is a timely and important step for the worldwide open source community," said Phipps, "I encourage everyone to visit OSI )(http:// opensource.org/join) and take a stand for open source."

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Topics: Open Source, Social Enterprise, Software Development

About

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, aka sjvn, has been writing about technology and the business of technology since CP/M-80 was the cutting edge, PC operating system; 300bps was a fast Internet connection; WordStar was the state of the art word processor; and we liked it.His work has been published in everything from highly technical publications... Full Bio

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