Open Source Initiative blogs

  1. OpenMRS joins Open Source Initiative as Affiliate Member

    Partnership highlights core values of both organizations in ensuring access to all members within communities.

    March 30, 2015 - PALO ALTO, Calif. -- The Open Source Initiative ® (OSI), recognized globally for their work in promoting and protecting open source software and development communities, announced today the Affiliate Membership of OpenMRS®, a free and open source health IT platform.

    The OpenMRS community works around the world to bring high-quality open source healthcare information systems to everyone. It creates both a modular software platform that allows individuals, organizations, and countries to customize the software to their specific needs; mobile applications to interact with the system in rural areas; and reference "distributions" that can be used as starting points to design systems to meet the needs of various types of health care delivery. OpenMRS software is based on the principle that information should be stored in a way which makes it easy to summarize, analyze, and securely share with other Health IT systems.

    “We are delighted to have the OpenMRS project join us as an affiliate member,” said Leslie Hawthorn, OSI Board Director. “Their dedication to improving lives through open source medical records software not only supports the mission of the OSI, it makes the world a better place for some of the world’s most vulnerable populations.”

    The OSI Affiliate Member Program allows any non-profit community, organization or institution—unequivocally independent groups with a clear commitment to open source—to join the OSI in support of it’s mission to educate about and advocate for the benefits of open source and to build bridges among different constituencies in the open source community. The current OSI Affiliate membership is a who's-who of the world of open source software.

    “Over the last decade, the OpenMRS community has become a believer in open source — both its licensing and its collaborative spirit,” said Paul Biondich, OpenMRS Project Leader. “Open source is a way to empower people around the world to make life better for themselves and for their communities. We believe that the poor should have an equal opportunity to live healthy lives, and open source is a way for them to access technology critical to today's health care systems. For those reasons, we deeply support the mission of the OSI, and are eager to lend our voices to its direction to ensure the long-term success of open source.”

    One of the most important activities of the OSI is as an internationally recognized standards body, maintaining the Open Source Definition for the good of the community. The Open Source Initiative Approved License trademark and program creates a nexus of trust around which developers, users, corporations and governments can organize open source cooperation. The growing number of Affiliate Members highlight both the value of the OSI’s work and acknowledgement of the OSI’s authority in open source licensing.

    About OpenMRS
    OpenMRS started in 2004 as a open source medical record system for developing countries. A volunteer organization, its community nurtures a growing worldwide network of individuals and organizations all focused on creating medical record systems and an implementation network to allow system development self reliance within resource constrained environments. Since launching in a single clinic in Kenya, OpenMRS has been implemented throughout the world, including places like South Africa, Philippines, Haiti, Rwanda, Lesotho, Uganda, Tanzania, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, and many more. For more information, visit http://openmrs.org/.

    About the Open Source Initiative
    Founded in 1998, the Open Source Initiative protects and promotes open source by providing a foundation for community success. It champions open source in society through education, infrastructure and collaboration. The (OSI) is a California public benefit corporation, with 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. For more information about the OSI, or to learn how to become an affiliate, please visit: opensource.org/affiliates.

    Media Contact
    Ed Schauweker ed@agilepr.net

  2. California Association of Voting Officials, Latest to Join Open Source Initiative
    Organizations aligned in goals of raising awareness and adoption of open source in government and elections.

    PALO ALTO, Calif. -- The Open Source Initiative ® (OSI), the premiere organization that promotes and protects open source, announced today that the California Association of Voting Officials (CAVO) has joined the OSI as an Affiliate Member. CAVO is dedicated to the development of open source voting systems for use in public elections, and provides training, education and management best practices to election officials for the effective employment of technologies. OSI Affiliate Members are organizations committed to public support for open source software and the role the OSI plays therein. The current Affiliate membership is a who's-who in the world of open source software.

    California Association of Voting Officials CAVO and OSI recognize that advances in open source development can provide citizens and governments the opportunity to ensure that everyone’s vote is counted accurately and securely without being held hostage to private vendors nor aging, outdated infrastructure. Innovation through open source development will provide communities the capacity and certainty to administer elections for this century and keep the promise of democracy, namely that your vote will always count.

    “CAVO's Affiliate Membership not only exemplifies the increasing awareness and adoption of open source software beyond the technology sector, but their work also highlights the alignment in values and benefits among community-based development projects in support of public services like voting,” said Patrick Masson, General Manager of the OSI. “CAVO, like the OSI and many of our other Affiliate Members, has worked with local and national government, advocating for open source software and practices. We're very excited to learn from—and share—their experience and success with the broader open source community.”

    One of the most important activities of the OSI is as an internationally recognized standards body, maintaining the Open Source Definition for the good of the community. The Open Source Initiative Approved License trademark and program creates a nexus of trust around which developers, users, corporations and governments can organize open source cooperation.

    "We are excited to be an Affiliate Member with the Open Source Initiative. This relationship will be instrumental in our civil rights effort toward transparency in public elections," said CAVO Secretary Brent Turner. CAVO President, Timothy B Mayer added, "The OSI provides a foundation to our election reform efforts. We proudly support them and are honored to be members."

    About The California Association of Voting Officials
    Formed in December of 2013, the California Association of Voting Officials (CAVO) is a California nonprofit non-stock mutual benefit corporation designed to create new voting systems utilizing free open source software and inexpensive commodity components. CAVO's scope includes technical support, professional development and advocacy for the effective employment of open source technologies and management practices. You can learn more about CAVO at: www.cavo-us.org/

    About the Open Source Initiative
    Founded in 1998, the Open Source Initiative protects and promotes open source by providing a foundation for community success. It champions open source in society through education, infrastructure and collaboration. The (OSI) is a California public benefit corporation, with 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. For more information about the OSI, or to learn how to become an affiliate, please visit: http://opensource.org/affiliates

    Media Contact
    Ed Schauweker
    ed@agilepr.net

  3. Statement of Support: Open Source Licensing and Community Intent

    Christoph Hellwig, supported by Software Freedom Conservancy (Conservancy), has initiated a lawsuit in Germany against VMware for alleged violations of the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL) version 2, an OSI approved license. If you aren’t following the case yet, it’s worth starting with the statements published by Conservancy, the Free Software Foundation, and VMware.

    Open source software authors can choose among several OSI approved licenses to make sure their software can be freely used, changed and shared. Open source licenses are legal documents, but open source communities also view them as social contracts that express the expectations of software authors in terms of collaborative development.

    OSI strongly supports compliance with the terms of open source licenses, including the one involved in this case, the GPL. OSI also encourages respectful collaboration as peers between downstream recipients of open source software and upstream software developers and believes that such collaboration is most effective if participants are mindful of both their legal obligations and community expectations. It is mainly thanks to balancing collaboration and compliance that open source software can thrive.

    While litigation around open source licenses should always be a last resort to obtain license compliance, it's sometimes necessary. OSI is following the development of this litigation closely as it may provide useful guidance about interpretation of the terms of the GPL.

  4. Why I am a Member of the Open Source Initiative

    (Original post by Leslie Hawthorn, CC-BY)

    And you should be, too.

    Full disclosure: I sit on the Board of the Open Source Initiative and am running for reelection in 2015. My board seat is a volunteer position and I receive no financial compensation for this work.

    For the first time ever, the Open Source Initiative (OSI) is running a membership drive to recruit more individual members. The goal is to recruit 2,398 new members, with that number chosen in homage to the organization’s founding date on February 3, 1998. As an individual member of the OSI, you receive a number of benefits for joining:

    If you use #opensource software, you could use one of these. Please become an OSI Member: http://t.co/z0t21MsJrh pic.twitter.com/oWgyfHND0I

    — OpenSourceInitiative (@OpenSourceOrg) February 11, 2015

    While the benefits you receive for your 40 USD annual membership dues are pretty great, they’re not the only reasons to support the OSI by becoming a member today. (I’d say there not even the best reasons to become a member, but I’m a big fan of participatory democracy so I’m hesitant to say the first bullet above isn’t the best reason to join. :) )

    By joining the OSI as an Individual Member, your voice and membership dollars are put to good use in the service of the OSI’s mission: to promote and protect open source software. The OSI accomplishes its mission in a number of ways:

    • Providing an incubator framework and set of collaboration tools for various working groups, such as the newly launched group to work with crowdfunding sites to ensure claims that products are open source are accurate and the creation of a curated content library for professionals who need to learn about open source software.
    • Raising awareness of the good works of our individual and affiliate members through our blog, social media and our monthly newsletter.
    • Building bridges between communities who can benefit from open source software, e.g. convening the Open Communities Reception at EDUCAUSE 2014, along with OSI Affiliate Member The Apereo Foundation. (For those who are not familiar with it, EDUCAUSE is the largest conference worldwide on the subject of IT and higher education.)
    • Educating the public at large about open source software through contact with the media, in-person events and curated content.
    • Reviewing and/or approving new open source software licenses.

    With your help as an Individual Member, the OSI can not only continue to execute on these strategic initiatives, we can also break new ground on additional projects, such as giving http://opensource.org a much needed overhaul. Even more importantly, with each new member joining us, the power of our support and promotion of open source software becomes ever stronger.

    I hope you will join us today and participate in our upcoming election for Board of Director Individual Members.

    Joining takes less than 5 minutes and just 40 USD. You can become a member for one year or have your membership fees renewed automatically each year.

    Please support the OSI now!

  5. Open Source Initiative 2015 Membership Drive

    February, 3rd, 2015 marks the 17th anniversary of the OSI: Please join today

    The OSI will launch our first ever Individual Membership Drive this year, coinciding with our 17th anniversary, Feb 3rd, 2015 and running through April 1st, 2015. Our membership drive goal is to sign up 2,398 members in celebration of our founding on 2/3/98 — "2,398 for 2/3/98" — see what we did there? :-) The membership drive will also run in parallel with our annual Board elections, with nominations opening on Feb 2nd. The membership campaign will become an annual event.

    Please join as a new member today!

    The Open Source Initiative® (OSI)

    • California 501(c)3 non-profit, raising awareness and adoption of open source software (OSS) through advocacy, education and building bridges between communities.
    • The pragmatic community organization that understands how developers, businesses, governments, and open source interact.
    • Steward of the Open Source Definition, globally recognized body for approving OSS licenses.

    Individual Membership

    Membership provides several benefits to individuals, the OSI and open source software. Only OSI Individual Members can vote for OSI Board Directors: they can even run for Director seats themselves. Individual Members are invited to join or create OSI sponsored Working Groups and Incubator Projects in various areas of open source advocacy and adoption. Individual Members are eligible for grants to attend conferences and meetings related to open source software on behalf of the OSI.

    You can find out more about the benefits of becoming a Member of the Open Source Initiative and how to join, at: opensource.org/members

    If we reach our goal of 2,398 new members, we’ll not only raise $95,920 to help us with our operations and community-based initiatives, we’ll also build an even stronger constituency to support our efforts to raise awareness about and adoption of not only the projects of our Affiliate members, but open source software, communities and development internationally.

    Please support open source by joining today

    Spreading the word

    Please help spread the word about the OSI Individual Membership campaign, by posting about it, and encouraging your friends to join. Use the #for2398 hashtag when Tweeting.

    Read more about the OSI 2014 Operational & Organizational Highlights, Community Engagement, Mission & Mandate, Sponsorship Opportunities, and how we use our funds, in our recently released Open Source Initiative 2014 Annual Report.

 
 

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