Time: Thursday April 21st, 2016, 18:00-21:00

Location: Bocoup Office

201 South Street, Floor 1
Boston, MA 02111

The Bocoup folks ask that attendees enter through our back door at 50 Utica St., Boston, MA


Street parking is metered but inconsistent in the area

Parking Garages:

South Station Garage: Address: 750 Atlantic Ave, Boston, MA 02111 // Phone: (617) 345-0202

Chinatown Garage: Address: 125 Lincoln St, Boston, MA 02111 // Phone: (617) 416-6201

Public Transportation/ MBTA:

South Station (Red Line) is a 5 min. walk away

Chinatown Station (Orange Line) is an 8 min. walk away


Come meet the OSI Board! At this town hall style meeting, members of the OSI Board will share their ideas and plans for the future, talk about the organization's mission and concerns, and, hopefully, hear from you about your ideas and how you think the OSI can best serve the open source community.

There will be snacks and (non-alcoholic) drinks!

RSVP below:

  1. Deb Bryant
  2. Molly de Blanc
  3. Leslie Hawthorn
  4. Patrick Masson
  5. Mike Milinkovich
  6. Allison Randal
  7. Paul Tagliamonte
  8. Italo Vignoli
  9. Stefano Zacchiroli
  10. Chris Aniszczyk (tentative)
  11. Duane O'Brien
  12. Shane Curcuru

Read more about the OSI Board.

Read the Beyond-Licensing email archives for more details about the project.

Meeting Notes

  • Beyond licensing: meant to explore open source just beyond the scope of licensing - what is the raison d'etre of the OSI beyond keeping a list of licenses
  • A license is not enough to create a successful community & project, but these things are not as well defined as e.g. The Open Source Definition
  • Open standards requirements are a good addition to the purview of the OSI
  • Branding is important for open source projects, see recent post from Shane Curcuru on Beyond Licensing list
    • Company leadership who is disconnected from marketing dept understanding of open source and who co-opt open source brands / branding (e.g. Hadoop)
    • People want to work on projects because of the "brand" - reputation, credibility, etc.
    • Not every project needs to get to the point of needing "branding" but if you wait to long then your brand can have been coopted by businesses, etc.
    • Foundations exist to hold marks and allows for use of them in a sane way, e.g. differently than a trademarked name of a 'project' which is owned by a VC funded company
    • Company involvement can skew the perception of your project before you are aware it is happening
  • Open source needs marketing & marketing education! ^^
    • OSI can provide education and basic models for trademark usage or amplify signal of modern trademark guidelines & FOSS Marks project
    • Guide on what to worry about and when in your lifecycle for branding for projects so you don't burn cycles or get co-opted
    • 80% of trademark enforcement can be done with no cash outlay, just by sending a letter - can OSI provide templates for these polite letters?
  • Governance models
    • Copyright aggregation - this can be dangerous if any one entity exercises too much control over code base copyright
    • How do we organize our open source project
  • Social responsibility of the open source movement / organizations within it
    • Are codes of conduct something we should talk about as a best practice?
    • Free software and policy, e.g. bill introduced in New York City Council advocating government prefer FOSS in procurement - cuts costs, use local contractors vs. big vendors, set target for amount of open source being used, software produced by government should be released as open source
  • How to tell if a particular project is "good" to engage with / contribute to
  • How do we engage authentically with open source communities when we're a business using/creating open source software
  • OSI has capacity and neutrality to compile and index this kind of best practices content, the question is where to start - we want to be the 'reference desk'
    • Would there be a peer review process for this content?
    • What is the approval process for a particular document / syllabus / piece of work?
      • Could be the committer model to avoid endless debate
  • Employee and employer relationship around open source stuff - employment contracts, expectations of time to spend contributing, copyright assignment in work for hire situations, etc.
  • Sustainability of working on open source as an independent developer
  • Dealing with large and old companies trying to figure out how to use and deal with open source software and change agency within their organization
    • documenting the journey of these long existing companies to open source, e.g. Airbus determining the only way to support software in their aircraft, which can be in service 50-80 years, requires open source
  • Case study approach for business models of open source
  • Bridging the gap with younger/newer open source engineers who have a different understanding of these values and what they need
    • Newer projects didn't really care about licenses in the first place - look at GitHub 3-4 years ago, now GitHub is recommending a license as you spin up project
  • What if OSI was to do something along the lines of harvesting ideas from various sources and then link to references
  • Is it that difficult to do this?
  • Organizations need to understand the goverance model.  We can make lists of things to read, but there is more guidance needed.
  • Can we think of a more modern word than governance??
  • If not OSI, who? asks a board member. 
  • Key idea is to find information to share rather than creating content whole cloth
    • to that end, Deb suggests the idea floater volunteer to do a trial project to create a page with reference
  • Would be valuable if OSI would come up with language that defined elements of governance
    • create a working group to measure the model
    • satifies our interest in bringing in new groups
    • would like to create a list of indicators that would indicate openness
  • The FLOSS Foundations tutorial (OSCON circa 2013-14)  is great fodder for starting with material for sharing
  • OpenOffice community has actually grown without a community manager

Recap and close round table: Take-aways, closing toughts, suggestions

  • OSI board should talk about how it's different than other open source entities.
  • What's OSI's role in this galaxy of stuff? If OSI can articulate that, from there what goes beyond licencing will fall out.
  • Working on licenscing , governance education will help the ecosystem evolve because otherwise. Also branding ad trademark.
  • (Patrick) I ike the idea of becoming a resource library of content. Would like to qualify what kind of contet would help.  Also eats oru dogfood on reuse rather than creation.
  • We didn't talk about how we can get corporations to be better actors in open source.  Would a good place to start be identiying exemplary projects
  • Josh Berkus's presentation "10 ways to competly destroy your open source project" would be a great resource for this.
  • One way to collect it woud be to start the governance model project "why it's important" to have governeace.
  • A good example of collecting governance comes from hackerspace design patterns, but it's helped blossomed there.
  • We've discussed many ideas we can do, but we need folks that will show up and do things.
  • Big issue, getting corporations to understand open source
    • increasing level of interest
    • need to help
  • OSI two things
    • Legacy: we can not afford to discontinue stewarding open source
    • Today yet: Help under
  • Metaphore: Chemical elements .  In a more known world, it's understood how elements react together.

  • Thanks all!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

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