Building an Ecosystem for Open Source & Open Standards


#1

Hi,

I’m not new to technology or development but just joined this list.

I’m collecting examples of open source procurement policies, but also
trying to build broader principles and practices that would be important to
help enhance its adoption. The general repository is here:
https://github.com/mgifford/open-source-contracting

I am collecting a list of what I think would be important to build an
ecosystem for open source software here:

I know that it is important to change how procurement is done because after
working in the tech sector with governments and NGOs for over 20 years, I
know that most still think of open source as a free alternative rather than
a better alternative to proprietary tools.

I am one of the Accessibility Maintainers for Drupal, a CMS that drives
about 3% of the Internet. As a compelling example of why how open-source
is misunderstood, I have an example where one high school student in the
year before starting university, managed to contribute more to Drupal
Core’s accessibility than all Governments & NGOs combined. Now if this
wasn’t a human rights issue like accessibility, I can see how this wouldn’t
be such a big issue. However, lots of people are employed by governments
around the world to see that their web sites work for people with
disabilities.

Anyways, the point is, if we can strike at the root of an issue we are more
likely to be able to resolve it. So how do we see that there is a robust
ecosystem looking to support the open source technology that we all depend
on?

Looking forward to feedback and pull requests.

Mike

··· -- Mike Gifford, President, OpenConcept Consulting Inc. Drupal 8 Core Accessibility Maintainer - https://drupal.org/user/27930 Twitter: @mgifford @openconcept_ca

Open source web development for social change - http://openconcept.ca
Drupal Association Member | Acquia Partner | Certified B Corporation


#2

Hi Mike,

Hi,

I’m not new to technology or development but just joined this list.

I’m collecting examples of open source procurement policies, but also
trying to build broader principles and practices that would be
important to help enhance its adoption. The general repository is
here:
https://github.com/mgifford/open-source-contracting

Thank you for taking the initiative, it is interesting to have such
resources available.

[…]

Anyways, the point is, if we can strike at the root of an issue we
are more likely to be able to resolve it. So how do we see that
there is a robust ecosystem looking to support the open source
technology that we all depend on?

My experience is that once you have built capacity in deploying and
maintaining Free Software solutions people take the step to support the
eco system themselves.

But you are right, getting the right procurement practices in place is
important. Unfortunately people are easily tricked in using “free (as
in beer) proprietary software” with forgetting they are sacrificing
many freedoms.

··· On Thu, 2017-09-07 at 09:54 -0700, Mike Gifford wrote:


Kind regards,
Rudy Gevaert
ICT for development consultancy
http://www.webworm.be


#3

Hi Rudy,

I’m collecting examples of open source procurement policies, but also
trying to build broader principles and practices that would be
important to help enhance its adoption. The general repository is
here:
https://github.com/mgifford/open-source-contracting

Thank you for taking the initiative, it is interesting to have such
resources available.

I’m happy to hear that you find them useful.

Anyways, the point is, if we can strike at the root of an issue we
are more likely to be able to resolve it. So how do we see that
there is a robust ecosystem looking to support the open source
technology that we all depend on?

My experience is that once you have built capacity in deploying and
maintaining Free Software solutions people take the step to support the
eco system themselves.

There is bound to be a lot of variation. Certainly if there are enough examples around, then people will often “do the right thing”.

But you are right, getting the right procurement practices in place is
important. Unfortunately people are easily tricked in using “free (as
in beer) proprietary software” with forgetting they are sacrificing
many freedoms.

I end my presentations about Drupal & Accessibility with a line about “Free as in Kittens”. I think this drives it home a bit more about the importance of finding ways to nurture this gift. If organizations aren’t finding ways to support the ecosystem of technology that they use, then it probably won’t be there when they need it. Classic tragedy of the commons.

If you have suggestions on how to entrench this so that peoples patterns and expectations change that would be great. I’ve talked with agencies who set up contracts for open source work and assume that the contractor that they have selected is contributing back. This isn’t always the case. Picking the wrong contractor doesn’t ensure that you’ll be supporting the community in any way.

Mike

··· > On Sep 7, 2017, at 3:48 PM, Rudy Gevaert wrote: > On Thu, 2017-09-07 at 09:54 -0700, Mike Gifford wrote: -- Mike Gifford, President, OpenConcept Consulting Inc. Drupal 8 Core Accessibility Maintainer - https://drupal.org/user/27930 Twitter: @mgifford @openconcept_ca

Open source web development for social change - http://openconcept.ca
Drupal Association Member | Acquia Partner | Certified B Corporation