Open source legal awareness needs to grow


Three things hit me from the results of the 2022 State of Open Source survey announced today. 

First is the confirmation that open source is everywhere, powering innovation across all fields. It’s not a surprise, rather the confirmation of trends that we’ve seen for decades. The respondents have indicated that the driver to use open source is innovation, rather than licensing costs. Open source software is used across the board for all kinds of use cases, including a surprisingly high 14% desktop and personal productivity tools.

Second: respondents seem to be exploring blockchain and NFT at a surprisingly high rate. While NFTs got the lowest score of all as “not important”, more than 20% marked both blockchain and NFT as “very important”. I’d be interested to understand why. 

Third: legal competence is not as high as I thought it would be. Only 15% responded that their company has an Open Source Program Office (OSPO) and only 12% have a legal department that is competent in open source licensing. I guess this month’s call to enroll in the Brandeis Open Source Management course comes at a good time. The courses are developed together with OSI and are an opportunity for companies to increase their open source competence.

I’d love to discuss the results of the survey and other topics with you. Book time OSI’s informal office hours on Fridays.

Stefano Maffulli
Executive Director, OSI

In this month’s Open Source Initiative newsletter:

  • OSI Board Elections 2022
  • Spotlight on Libre Space Foundation, OSI Associate Member
  • Google Open Source Programs Office: The business impact of open source
  • OSI in the News
  • SCALE 19x Postponed

OSI Board Elections 2022

In the next few months, the OSI board of directors will renew four of its seats with an open election process among its full individual members and affiliates. There will be two elections in March:

  • The Affiliate organizations will elect two directors
  • Individual members will elect two directors

Read more about the process and timeline.

Instructions for candidates of the Affiliates are sent separately.

Individual members can candidate themselves now.

Spotlight on Libre Space Foundation, OSI Affiliate Member

Did you know that one of OSI’s members is leading the effort to take open source to infinity and beyond?! Libre Space Foundation (LSF) is a non-profit foundation registered in Greece whose vision is “an Open and Accessible Outer Space for all.” The organization works to promote, advance and develop free and open source technologies and knowledge for space.

Recently, Libre Space Foundation, on behalf of the OpenSatCom.org activity of the European Space Agency, partnered with Inno3 to investigate open source development models in the satellite communications industry and share their findings in a report. Read more.

Google Open Source Programs Office: The business impact of open source

Amanda Casari is an open source scientist with the Google Open Source Programs Office where she leads Google’s research and engineering work with Project OCEAN. Open source programs offices (OSPOs) are established in organizations as a means to centralize policies, strategies, and guidance, and to ensure common practices across complex teams working on open source projects. Amanda offers some structure for any organization working with open source that is considering starting an OSPO of their own.

If you’re interested in digging deeper into the impact model guidelines Amanda shares based on her work at Google, you can watch her video from the POSI event and read more here.

SCALE 19x postponed to July

Due to developments in the COVID-19 pandemic, SCALE 19x is being rescheduled to July 28-31st AND is moving to Los Angeles.

Read more.

OSI in the news

In case you missed it, the OSI was interviewed for these articles:

  • Why the metaverse must be open but regulated. Widespread accessibility for the metaverse and the technologies that develop it is vital for the metaverse to reach its full potential. Will the metaverse follow a similar path of innovation and regulation as the internet did?

  • FLOSS Weekly 665: The Open Source Initiative. Maffulli joins Jonathan Bennett and Simon Phipps on this episode of FLOSS Weekly. Phipps does double duty as guest as well as co-host. It’s all about the Open Source Initiative, the custodians of what exactly counts as Open Source.

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