[License-discuss] OSI practicing what we preach

Henrik Ingo henrik.ingo at avoinelama.fi
Thu Jun 6 09:53:42 UTC 2019

I was unaware that we preach that only non-profits can operate free
software. From my point of view sub contracting such tasks is a great idea,
if OSI has funds for it. Especially since list traffic is public anyway,
the privacy risk is small. Obviously we should in any case select an
operator that uses and contributes to free software.

That said, I fully understand that a US based person may think about this
differently than I do. OSI may want to consider using a EU based firm for
email and other communications hosting.


On Thu, Jun 6, 2019 at 5:46 AM Bruce Perens via License-discuss <
license-discuss at lists.opensource.org> wrote:

> I agree with Rick that Free Software organizations, and that includes OSI,
> should make use of entirely free software run for them by a non-profit that
> contributes its modifications back to the projects. But I don't know who
> that would be today. Should we be putting together crowdfunding to create
> such a thing? I would certainly pay for such a service for my company and
> personal use.
> Thanks
> Bruce
> On Tue, Jun 4, 2019, 17:18 Rick Moen <rick at linuxmafia.com> wrote:
>> Quoting Luis Villa (luis at lu.is):
>> > People who have asked questions of the list have certainly been told
>> that,
>> > both explicitly and by implication ("well, it isn't written down
>> anywhere
>> > else, so...") Usually politely, but polite terrible news is still
>> terrible
>> > news.
>> That's regrettable and it would certainly be better to be able to point
>> to a summary in some suitable non-mailing-list ticket.  As with the SVLUG
>> example, there is a tendency to rely on an existing tool for unsuitable
>> uses, if that's what is on hand, and I imagine people get lazy and don't
>> want to spend time getting and providing the right per-message
>> Pipermail archive URL.
>> Well, at least this was not an OSI statement or (I gather) from an OSI
>> Board member, which was the impression I got from your initial footnote.
>> > https://github.com/OpenSourceOrg/ has existed, and been relied on, for
>> some
>> > time. And that's purely proprietary.
>> Although past regrettable decisions are, in my opinion, best not used to
>> justify future ones, I have the pleasure today of bringing good news:
>> The proprietary GitHub service and the theoretically open source &
>> self-hostable but extremely ponderous and overengineered GitLab codebase
>> have, for some years, had excellent, modestly scoped, open source
>> alternative codebases, fully suitable for self-hosting and devoid of
>> bloat.
>> In particular, _Gitea_ is excellent and increasingly in use by Linux
>> distributions for their own code repositories, in managing their software
>> development teams.  (If you want an example:  Devuan Project.  There are
>> others.)
>> https://gitea.io/
>> So, today's the day OSI can start migrating that repo off proprietary
>> software, and onto something less horribly overfeatured than is
>> Microsoft's GitHub service, to boot, on any OSI static IP.
>> (Administrative burden, you say?  But this isn't corporate bloatware, so
>> please check the Gitea docs, and you'll see there's rather little.)
>> > More generally, SaaS is a massive channel for open source these days,
>> and
>> > the org has very limited organizational bandwidth. It would seem odd to
>> > insist on both avoiding one of (the?) predominant open source
>> distribution
>> > model, and imposing overhead on the org.
>> Is is not the least bit odd to model the suitability of open source to
>> be in control of one's computing infrastructure -- the way businesses
>> control business risk by deploying autonomous open source -- by doing
>> so.
>> (Example:  A year from now, Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
>> advises that it's shutting down its free hosting.  Is OSI able and
>> prepared to migrate everything?  To where?  Uh-oh.  Yes, theoretically
>> the Discourse Web-forum software is open source hence migratable, but
>> in practice it's about as vendor-locked-in as is GitLab data.)
>> On the other hand, it's entirely impossible to compete with the zero
>> administrative overhead of outsourcing to third-party hosted software,
>> so if that's the criterion OSI wants to apply, then outsourcing will
>> automatically win, every time.
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henrik.ingo at avoinelama.fi
+358-40-5697354        skype: henrik.ingo            irc: hingo

My LinkedIn profile: http://fi.linkedin.com/pub/henrik-ingo/3/232/8a7
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