Open Source Initiative Blog

  1. Participate in the #OpenTechNights Program today and Win a Free Stay during the FOSSASIA Summit 2018 from the Open Source Initiative and UNESCO

    The FOSSASIA Summit 2018 takes place in Singapore from Thursday, March 22 – Sunday, March 25. Open Source contributors can now apply for a free ticket to the event, and accommodation throughout conference. In addition, you’ll be eligible to participate in: A featured workshops, the UNESCO hackathon, and celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Open Source Initiative. All you have to do is convince us, that you are an awesome Open Source contributor and book your trip to Singapore!

    About #OpenTechNights

    Developers from all over the world are joining the FOSSASIA Summit. We want to connect established and new Open Tech contributors alike. With the support of UNESCO, the Open Source Initiative, and other partners, we are inviting Free and Open Source Software contributors to join us. Winners will receive free lodging at a shared accommodation in the centre of Singapore, and a free ticket to the conference.

    Winners are expected to join the summit each day, to participate in the workshops, and the Hackathon on Saturday/Sunday, March 24/25. We would also hope you can support the Open Source Initiative at their booth.

    How do I sign up?

    Step 1: Please fill in our form here before February 28, 2018.

    Step 2: We will notify all winners within three days of their submission, however judging will begin immediately, and continue until all open spots are filled, so the earlier you apply, the higher your chances to win. Please note, winners will receive free accommodations in the Singapore. Flight and other travel costs are not included and are the responsibility of the attendee.

    Step 3: Selected applicants must confirm their itinerary and tickets before March 1st to insure their free stay in Singapore. Earliest check-in possible is Wednesday March 21, latest check-out is Monday, March 26. Please indicate your arrival and departure times in the application form.

    Expectations of Participants – Share what you learn

    Attendees support volunteers, speakers and participants at the event, and take a shift at the Open Source Initiative’s booth. Let’s bring the spirit of sharing Open Technologies and learning together! Please confirm your participation in the specially featured workshops on Thursday, March 22, 2018 from 9.00 AM – 6.00PM. Attendees participate in the UNESCO Hackathon on Saturday, March 24 (2.00 PM – 10.00PM) and on Sunday, March 25 (9.00 AM – 5.00PM). Attendees help reach out to community members who cannot join us at the event, make tweets, share what you learn on social media, publish photos and put up blog post about the summit.

    Apply Now

    Apply for a free stay with #FOSSASIA #OpenTechNights supported by the Open Source Initiative and the UNESCO and participate at the FOSSASIA Summit 2018 now here!

    More Information

    More updates, tickets and information on speakers on our website: https://2018.fossasia.org.

    Thank you to our Sponsors

    We would like to thank our sponsors whose support enabled this event, and our other activities throughout our 20th anniversary in 2018.

  2. The Open Source Initiative board is homogeneous, stratified across generations.

    We fit across three (tech) generations of contributors to free and open source software–those who were involved in the early days of free software; those who found places in the community after open source had been established; and the group paultag humorously dubbed the GNU generation–none of us have lived in a world without the explicit concept of user freedom.

    Within my cadre of FOSS-loving millennials, several of us have fairly similar stories, both inside of our FOSS lives and out: we all had formative life experiences of financial hardship, and tech helped us emerge into comfortable, middle-class lifestyles. We’re all community-focused and have worked as community managers. We’ve been finalists for the same jobs.

    That is to say, while we have different opinions and different outlooks, we all come from fairly similar places.

    While I would not go as far as to say the same is true across each generation represented in the board, we do a fairly good job of agreeing with one another. Occasionally we argue, but that frequently comes from practical points and specific concerns relating to the gritty logistics of making decisions for an organization.

    We have a range of experiences represented when you take the board as a whole, but not as different as I would like to see.

    The fact is, the board does not represent the greater FOSS community. This is why it’s important for more people to join the OSI–in order to vote in elections and make sure their voices are represented. In order for this representation to be real, we need people from different backgrounds and viewpoints to stand for election and become board members.

    To say this in more explicit terms: the OSI board is extremely (exclusively) white. Two board members are European, eight of us from the United States, and there is one Canadian. I think this is a problem.

    What do I want from you? If you’re from outside North America, I want you to run for the OSI board. If you’re a racial minority, I want you to run for the OSI board. If you come from a background that is a part of the FOSS movement, but not represented, I want you to run for the OSI board. Are you from North America? Are you white? Are you a college educated coder working in a cool tech job? That is -awesome-. I am some of those things. I want you to reach out to your friends with different backgrounds, experiences, and knowledge and encourage them to run for the OSI board.

    Think you’re unqualified? You’re totally not. One of the things I’ve learned about life–and especially FOSS–from three of my amazing free software mentors is that we’re never qualified when we start something new–or at least we don’t feel that way. I had no clue what I was doing when I first thought about running for the OSI board. All I knew was that I wanted to do more for the community.

    Think you’re too busy? You might be! You might not be! We’re a pretty busy lot, and we each put in what we’re capable of. Sometimes that’s advice and ideas; sometimes it’s fundraising, financial literacy skills, ideas, organizing, writing, and anything else you bring to the table.

    Think you’ve nothing to say? I bet you do.

    Joining a board is not only about you–it’s about giving back to the community that has given you so much. It’s about pushing a movement forward. It’s about bringing the ideas and voices of others to the table, and making sure that everyone is heard.

    If you’re interested in running, but scared, uncertain, don’t think you’re qualified, want help, or just want to talk more about the responsibilities, please email me at molly [at] opensource [dot] org or Josh Simmons at josh [at] opensource [dot] org.

    Board members also get sweet email addresses, and that alone is reason enough to run.

    Previously, the board was appointed by the board. This gave them the opportunity to create a group representing a range of experiences and skill sets, as well as fill necessary niches of knowledge (licensing, technical skills, community organization, etc). Now that we have a board elected by membership, it’s more crucial for people to both nominate themselves, if they don’t see enough representation, and join the OSI. In order for elections to actually reflect the FLOSS community, wee need a strong, varied membership from all over the world. So, in addition to running or encouraging your friends to run, consider joining as an Individual or Affiliate member.

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