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OpenChain Newsletter #11

By 2018-03-27January 19th, 2023Monthly Newsletter

Newsletter – Issue 11 – March 2018


This month is all about the OpenChain Specification. We are approaching a new release and are seizing the opportunity for reaffirming the core text and goals of the project. At the same time we are seeing new interest and engagement from both technology stakeholders and those from further afield. Speaking of further afield, we just released some milestone curriculum material in Simplified Chinese under CC-0 licensing (effectively public domain). See below.

OpenChain Specification

The OpenChain Project has developed a specification that defines a core set of requirements that a quality FOSS compliance program is expected to satisfy. Although it represents a minimum set of “must have” requirements, a significant degree of flexibility is given on how an organization might implement them. OpenChain Conformance helps to reduce concerns about open source compliance in organizations of all types and sizes.

We update the specification periodically based on feedback from our community. At the moment we are in the home stretch before releasing version 1.2 in April. This release does not change the requirements of the specification but introduces improvements to language and definitions to make OpenChain Conformance and translations easier. We are seeking public comments as we wrap things up.

Everyone is invited to make their voice heard before we conclude public comments on the 15th of April. You can review the latest draft of the OpenChain Specification – and see what has changed on page 3 – by heading to this link:

If you want a “clean” version of the current draft you can get it here:

We welcome any and all feedback from all parties. The easiest way to provide such feedback and to get involved in the conversation is to mail our Specification list:

Feel a little out of your depth? You can get a better understanding of how the specification was developed and what its goals are right here:

OpenChain Conformance and Case Studies

There are several large entities currently undergoing OpenChain Conformance. We are working closely with these new and old community partners to assist and to learn. OpenChain Conformance is often a two-way process, involving listening to great feedback that helps us improve the OpenChain Specification or the OpenChain Conformance process itself.

One of the first announcements coming up, and our first case study, is being arranged with Code4Health, a project of the English National Health Service and National Health Service Digital. We expect to formally release the case study and announce their conformance by the end of this month. Meanwhile, Code4Health – the first program inside the NHS to conform – is already Tweeting:

OpenChain @ Events

We have completed some interesting event outreach during the early part of March. One of the most notable was a workshop held in partnership with the Open Culture Foundation (Taiwan) on the 5th of March, an event that fits neatly into our Asian outreach priorities. A few points became clear:

  • Most attendees had a direct interest in using some or all of the OpenChain curriculum to support their compliance efforts.
  • All attendees expressed interest having open source compliance collaboration between companies to encourage deeper open source use in companies.
  • Most attendees faced various challenges in explaining this to the administrative side of their businesses.

One area of useful feedback was that some attendees asked for future events to be held in Hsichu or Neihu so that their colleagues can join. Some may be able to offer a meeting room at their offices. Our colleagues at the Open Culture Foundation are exploring the opportunities and may hold another workshop in April or May.

OpenChain Project held a governing board meeting, a face-t0-face and a standing room-only talk at the Linux Foundation’s Open Source Leadership Summit in Sonoma. This event was a great chance to reconnect with many of our core constituents and to personally engage with some potential new contributors.

For those of you who are new to the project, our governing board consists of representatives from our 14 Platinum Members, and it meets once every quarter to discuss strategy. Their input ties directly into the activities of our Specification, Conformance, Curriculum and Onboarding work teams, each of which was represented or discussed during our open session. The OpenChain talk was delivered by Shane Coughlan, OpenChain Project Director, to the general Leadership Summit audience. It was interesting to note the level of engagement and questions fielded by the audience. It highlights both the amount of interest there is around improving compliance and areas where we can usefully focus on developing new onboarding or reference material.

The OpenChain Project has some forthcoming events that may be of interest to our readers:

  1. In partnership with Moorcrofts in the UK the OpenChain Project announced details for an OpenChain session at a BCS event in London on the 22nd of March.
  2. Shane Coughlan, OpenChain Project Director, will deliver a keynote on OpenChain at Linaro Connect in Hong Kong on the 22nd March.
  3. The OpenChain Japan Work Group has announced that its third meeting will be held on the 19th of April at the Panasonic offices in Osaka.
  4. The OpenChain Project will be featured in talks and workshops at the Legal Network ‘Legal and Licensing Workshop’ held in Barcelona between the 18th and 20th of April.

Keep track of all our events here:

OpenChain Internationalization

The OpenChain Curriculum slides are now available in Simplified Chinese. This is a significant milestone in sharing useful open source compliance information with a key target demographic. Great thanks are due to Hung Chang and Navia Shen for initiating the OpenChain Simplified Chinese translator team, to Lucien Lin for creating this translation, and to Florence Ko for review.

Get the slides in PDF, PPTX and ODP formats here:

Coming next

The next month will be all about case studies, reference material and expanding the community of conformance. Not to mention the formal release of the OpenChain Specification 1.2. Stay tuned and feel free to join any of our work teams at any time. You insights always help make us better.

License and Trademarks

Copyright 2018 The Linux Foundation. This newsletter is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0). Please feel free to share it onwards! OpenChain is a trademark of The Linux Foundation. It may be used according to The Linux Foundation Trademark Policy and the OpenChain Terms of Use. All other trademarks belong to their respective owners.