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Open Source Contribution Policies that Don't Suck

January 11, 2021


Guest Speaker: Tobie LangelOpen Source Strategist and Principal at UnlockOpen presents on "Open Source Contribution Policies That Don't Suck".

This video was from a live webinar conducted for the FINOS Open Source Readiness (OSR) project. The OSR project meets bi-weekly for guest presentations, knowledge-sharing between financial industry firms solving similar issues on their road to open source readiness, and discussion of open source strategy. Take a look at upcoming meeting agendas and join us!



TOBIE'S Presentation

Open Source Contribution Policies That Don't Suck - from March 25, 2020 - Open Source Readiness (OSR) Project

HubSpot Video

Open source contribution policies are long, boring, overlooked documents, that generally suck. They're designed to protect the company at all costs. But in the process, end up hurting engineering productivity, and morale. Sometimes they even unknowingly put corporate IP at risk.

But that's not inevitable. It's possible to write open source contribution policies that make engineers lives easier, boost morale and productivity, reduce attrition, and attract new talent. And it's possible to do so while reducing the company's IP risk, not increasing it.

In this talk, we will look at the general structure of open source contribution policies, examples in the wild, and tactics to make them suck less.

We'll also look at how to turn these policies into self-service software, preventing the tedious email back and forth between engineering and legal, and making open source contribution a breeze.

Tobie was a speaker recently at the FINOS Open Source Strategy Forum in NYC. View his presentation on From Laggard to Open Source Power House here.



Tobie Langel is the founder of UnlockOpen, a boutique consulting firm that helps organizations think strategically about open source. His clients include top tech companies like Google, Microsoft, Intel, and Mozilla.

Tobie Langel is the facilitator of AMP’s Advisory Committee and sits on the Advisory Board of OASIS Open Projects.

Previously, he was a member of Facebook’s Open Source and Web Standards team, and was Facebook’s Advisory Committee representative at W3C.

An avid open-source contributor, Tobie Langel is known for having co-maintained the Prototype JavaScript Framework and for numerous open source projects. He also edited a number of Web standards (notably WebIDL), and led W3C’s Web platform testing effort.


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