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Django Software Foundation: 2011 President's Address


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The 2011 President's address, made at DjangoCon 2011.

The 2011 President's address, made at DjangoCon 2011.

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  • \n
  • Strategic technical advisor to Hunted Media (formerly WotNews)\nFlagship:\n
  • As well as We Are Hunted, they produce iPhone and Android apps in the media space\n
  • Co Founder and CTO of Second Chair Systems\n\nNot hiring yet; but should by start of the new year\n
  • \n
  • Incorporated in Kansas\n\nDSF set up to make sure v1.0 was standing on good ground.\n
  • Because we’re a not-for-profit, we have a specific mandate: \n\nTo Support development of Django by sponsoring Sprints, Meetups, Gatherings and Community Events\nTo Promote the use of Django amongst the world-wide development community\nTo Protect the IP and the long-term viability of the framework\nAdvance the state of the art in Web Development\n\nWhat we can’t do -- Lobby government. Campaign for or endorse anyone public office\n
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  • Adrian and Jacob are Django’s BDFL \nDan is President of Mediaphormedia, the tech arm of the Lawrence Journal-World.\n\nI assumed the role of President just prior to DjangoCon US last year.\n\nNot paid positions. We’re actually not allowed to be paid for our work. (we can be reimbursed for expenses)\n
  • \n
  • 4 board members isn’t really enough to get anything practical done. \nSo, board is empowered to create committees to get stuff done\nBoard can appoint anyone to a committee\n
  • Members can nominate members for the board.\n\nProvides a vehicle for demonstrating wider support for DSF activity.\n
  • Foundation was established in 2008, some big Django players were approached to provide seed funding. \n\nThere hasn’t been a big membership drive since then. Mostly because we weren’t sure what to do with funds.\nThere hasn’t been a corporate membership activated in 12 months.\n\nThis will change :-)\n
  • Remember: 501(c)(3) Not for profit means US tax deductable \n\nCan be targeted donations: e.g., Google is sponsoring the sprints, so they will be a fully catered event. \n\nSO - if you have money burning a hole in your pocket, we can help.\n\n
  • Founded in 2008, I assumed presidency last year. I’ve spent most of this year trying to find where we keep the toner, and working out how to get the group working effectively. \n\nTo date, DSF activities mostly legal-related. But very important legal related, so let’s deal with those first.\n
  • These require a disclaimer.\n\nDSF has lawyers, including Justin Bronn on the Legal Committee, and an Actual Real Life Law Firm -- which is one of the reasons we need money. However, none of these legal eagles have vetted this slide deck. \n\nThere are exceptions and catches and limitations to some of the things I’m going to say here -- I’m going to speak in broad strokes and err on the side of caution. If you want more detail, pay a lawyer.\n
  • \n
  • \n
  • Django Project, Django Foundation don’t own copyright.\n\nIf you have contributed code -- a patch, documentation, whatever -- you still own that code.\n
  • It doesn’t matter how left wing libertarian hippy you are -- Copyright matters. Copyleft is not “anti-copyright”. It’s a neat hack of copyright laws to achieve a particular goal. \n\nBSD, GPL -- any license, copyleft or otherwise -- all arguing about the terms for point 3.\n\nIf you don’t provide a license, it’s All Rights Reserved.\n\nApplies to all works -- a “patch” in this context is a work.\n\n
  • *code, documentation, translations -- anything that is “creative” and part of Django.\n\nCopyright line: (C) Django Software Foundation *and individual contributors*\n\nWe act as a clearing house. If challenged, we need to be able to assert that we either own, or are in a position to distribute, all our code.\n\nTwo ways to handle this. One - copyright assignment. GNU project does this.\n\nContributor License Agreement is the alternative\n
  • The interpretive dance performance of django/db/ will be in the main ballroom this evening...\n\nIncludes any patents that you own that cover your contributions.\nWarrants that you are in a position to provide this guarantee\nNot required to support it\n\nWhy this and not assignment? Because you continue to own your own code. \n
  • \n
  • \n
  • \n
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  • Trademarks are not the same as copyright.\n\nA Trademark is a distinctive sign or indicator used to identify that the products or services with which the trademark appears originate from a unique source, and to distinguish products or services from those of other companies.\n\nA Name, word, phrase, logo, symbol, design, image, or combination.\n
  • The name \n\nThe color #092E20 and The font (Prokyron)\n\n
  • Has to be owned by someone; the DSF is that someone.\n\nIf we don’t protect it, we could lose it.\n\nSo - it can’t be a free for all. Xerox/Kleenex. Google\n
  • There are some examples where you don’t need any permission or license to use the trademark.\n\nNominative use: Using the trademark to “name”. Providing context - it is a “thing for Django”\n
  • \n
  • official or exclusive status\n\nUsing the same colors, fonts, etc\n\n
  • The problem is that we’re late to this party. There are several companies that are already called “Django X”. There’s at least one person in this room that is affected by this.\n\nWe’re chasing down legal advice on this at the moment. We don’t want to come down hard - but we may need to do something in this area in order to protect our mark. If we don’t defend the Django mark, then others are free to use it, and we’ve already had one very prominent example of someone who essentially tried to screw the Django community using our own brand.\n\nIf you are already in this boat - Nate - please contact us. We need to talk.\n
  • These activities don’t actually take up that much time or money. They’re mostly legal infrastructure; once established, they essentially run themselves until someone does something to violate copyright or abuse a trademark. \n\nOk, so that means we need a bit of a war chest, but not massive amounts. In case of dire legal emergency, there are groups like the FSF and the Software Freedom Law Center who can provide assistance.\n\nWhy, then, does the DSF ask for memberships and donations? Well, because rumor has it that money can be used to buy things, and those things can help make the Django community a better place.\n\nIn the same way that Django acts as a licensing clearing house, my aim as DSF president is to become a clearing house for funds that make the Django community awesome.\n\n
  • \n
  • We want the Django community to be vibrant, and to have all the tools it needs. \n\nBruno Renie (Brutasse)\n\nIf you can build a site, and it’s of value to the community in some way, you shouldn’t be out of pocket.\n\nBuild it, and we will come (with our checkbook) - either giving you money to pay for hosting, or providing hosting on our own servers, or using our sway with Django hosting providers to get you free space - we are in a position to build up a devops team who can maintain the site 24/7, worldwide.\n\nDave Eaves advocated for better community tools. We 100% agree. \n
  • \n
  • The DSF is using money donated by Google chipping in to help with the sprints later this week. Clearing house.\n\nHistorically, the DSF has reimbursed some travel expenses. Don’t want this to just be Russell’s personal travel fund. \n\nDSF was a sponsor of PyCon Australia. Why? Because there isn’t a DjangoCon AU/APAC; it’s the biggest single meeting of Django-related people. Upside of this year - there’s a good chance there will be a DjangoCon AU next year. Elena Williams\n\nAnother reason - What message does this send to pointy haired bosses? It says Django is a a serious player. We need to walk the walk. As a community, This is something that the Rails community does *really* well. \n\n
  • DjangoCon: Not because we can’t -- there are good financial reasons for keeping conference organization independent of the DSF’s (mostly due to underwriting).\n\nBooze - Some people don’t drink. Some people can’t drink. Alcohol doesn’t always mix well. We’re a not for profit, but that doesn’t mean we drink the profits. Safer to stay away from this. We can and do pay for food.\n\nDeveloper time is a controversial one.\n\n
  • Open source development is wierd - it’s always been about liberty, and hasn’t ever really had a good argument for “who pays for it”. \nStrength of open source is that it is meritocratic. \n\nGSoC style process of proposing a feature and a timeline\nClear that it’s a meritocracy - feature needs have community support, proposed developer needs to have community support. Still needs to go through normal patch review process\n
  • Very complex process involved in getting a DSF grant. Applies to both infrastructure or general grants.\n
  • We are looking for creative ways to spend money to improve Django\n\nEither as a once off, or as a program of spending.\n\nBenefit for the community. \n\nHow much? Well, we don’t have unlimited funds. But we do have some funds. Hundreds easily. Thousands possible, for the right cause.\n
  • \n
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  • - in particular, making the foundation more visible, and providing visibility to those people who are actually financial sponsors.\n\n
  • Slightly problematic, because of the membership situation.\n\nInterest isn’t Django Development, it’s in stewardship of the Django project.\n\nIf you turn up, I will be shaking you down for either money or in-kind donation at some point in the near future.\n\nWe have a guess at how many people that means - can I get a show of hands to work out how good our guesswork is?\n\nDirected projects are better than vauge offers of help.\n
  • As part of the DSF mandate for improving the wellbeing of the Django community as a whole, I’d like to use the last few minutes to make an appeal.\n\nWhy should you donate to the DSF?\nI’ve told you what the DSF does, what we’re currently doing, what we’re empowered to do, what we plan to do; why should you care? \n
  • Tempting to make a moral argument. Free software users should stop freeloading, give back to the community. \n\nWhile true, not especially helpful. \n\n\n
  • Consider: if you weren’t using Django, Apache, Linux, (or any other open souce framework for that matter), what \nwould you be using? MS-based ASP stack? J2EE stack? \n\nHow much control over those frameworks do you have? How much money would it take to get a feature into ASP? Or to change the direction of the JCP?\n\nHow much money would you have to spend to get identified in the J2EE community as a serious player?\n\nConsider the signal that donating to open source projects sends to potential employees. Being associated with the DSF can be part of your company brand - for relatively little cost.\n\nThe more cash the DSF has, the more we can push Django into new markets -- increase the size of the market, make it easier to sell Django to customers, and so on.\n
  • Although i’m shilling for DSF donations here, DSF cash isn’t necessarily the best way to contribute. In kind donations of developer/designer time may be internally easier, and may be better for Django as a whole.\n\nConsider the message that letting employees contribute to open source sends to potential employees. Do you think the profile that Eldarion or RevSys have in the Django community make it easier or harder to find good hires?\nDo you think it harmed Hunted Media’s publicity when they hired me? Or New Relic’s publicity when they hired Graham Dumpleton?\n\nOS projects are time poor. It’s not that hard to get the commit bit if you put your mind to it. You just need to be a competent programmer who can show:\n * you play well with others (specifically the rest of the core team), and\n * you are willing and able to put in the effort long term.\nIn a corporate context, sometimes means putting single-minded corporate interests on the back burner; but it also means that you get your voice in the discussion.\n\nIf you’re moderately liquid dev shop, consider donating cash, but also consider donating time.The core team is constantly on the lookout for extra contributors. We installed 2 new core contributors in the last couple of weeks. \n\n
  • How can we make this a better value proposition?\nHow can we make it easier to sell this to your boss?\nHow should we be spending all our money?\n\n
  • \n
  • Transcript

    • 1. The DjangoSoftware Foundation President’s keynote DjangoCon US 2011
    • 2.
    • 3. Pocket HipsterMusic HunterSupersonic
    • 4. What is the DSF?• Guardians of the interests of Django• 501(c)(3) Not-for-profit organization• Established in 2008• Owner of Django Trademarks• Copyright management
    • 5. Mandate• Support development of Django• Promote the use of Django• Protect Intellectual Property• Advance the state of the art
    • 6. Structure• Board + officers• Committees• Developer Members• Corporate Members
    • 7. Board Members• President: Russell Keith-Magee• Adrian Holovaty• Jacob Kaplan-Moss• Dan Cox
    • 8. Officers• Treasurer: Joseph Kocherhans• Secretary: Jeremy Dunck
    • 9. Committees• Infrastructure committee• Grants committee• Legal committee
    • 10. Developer Members• Current: commit bit ≈ developer member• Admissions approved by the board• Can be anyone “sufficiently material”• Members can nominate new board
    • 11. Corporate Members• Paid memberships • Small: $500 per year • Medium: $1000 per year • Large: $5000 per year• Right now: no corporate members
    • 12. We also take donations
    • 13. What does the DSF do?
    • 14. IANAL
    • 15. Copyrights and CLAs
    • 16. Who ownsDjango’s Code?
    • 17. We all do.
    • 18. Copyright primer• If you produce a creative work, you (or your employer) owns the copyright.• You can assign that copyright.• You can license the use of your work.
    • 19. Django’s Copyright• DSF doesn’t own copyright• We license code* for redistribution so users don’t have to• Contributor License Agreements
    • 20. What is a CLA?• Grants the Django Foundation “a perpetual, worldwide, non-exclusive, no- charge, royalty-free, irrevocable license to reproduce, prepare derivative works of, publicly display, publicly perform, sublicense and distribute” your contributions
    • 21. If you havecontributed a patchyou should submit a CLA.
    • 22. If you worked on thepatch in company time, your employer needs to sign a CLA.
    • 23. If in doubt,submit a CLA.
    • 24. How?• Download the PDF• Sign it (and your boss if appropriate)• Send it to us•• Working on electronic submission
    • 25. Trademarks
    • 26. Using the Django mark• On paper: Belongs to the DSF• In practice: Belongs to the community• We don’t want to be as restrictive as some• We have to protect it (we’re required to)
    • 27. Nominative use
    • 28. Nominative use• Ulan Bator Django Users Group• Package names: django-tagging
    • 29. What isn’t OK?• Anything that implies endorsement• Anything that can be visually confused• Anything that distorts the Django mark• These guidelines are a work in progress
    • 30. If you’re starting a new company, please don’t call it Django<Foo>
    • 31. Bored yet?
    • 32. Infrastructure
    • 33. Infrastructure••• Buildbots (• Enterprise advocacy (• Build it, and we will bring the checkbook
    • 34. Grants
    • 35. Grants• Helping to make sprints happen• Getting people to events • Not just “important” people• Helping events that raise Django’s profile
    • 36. What we don’t do• Organize DjangoCons (US or EU)• Pay for alcohol• Pay for developer time (yet?)
    • 37. Developer time• Django features can’t be bought• Don’t want to steal the volunteer oxygen• Sets up commercial expectations• “Sponsored development”• GSoC style internships• Other ideas welcome
    • 38. How to get a grant?
    • 39. How to get a grant?• Ask
    • 40. State of the DSF
    • 41. State of the DSF• Good cash reserves.• Still finding our feet as an organization • No paid membership at present • Trying to build internal momentum
    • 42. Current activities• Renewing Django trademark• Seeking legal positions on trademark use• Redeveloping• Funding infrastructure• Fuding other community developmentts
    • 43. What Next?• Annual General Meeting: • Wednesday during lunch break • “Members only” event• Any ideas welcome• Volunteers welcome • Ask forgiveness, don’t wait for permission
    • 44. An appeal
    • 45. A moral argument
    • 46. Enlightened self-interest
    • 47. Not just about cash
    • 48. Give us your ideas
    • 49. Questions?