Debian and CENATIC become OSI affiliates
The Open Source Initiative has announced that the Debian project, maintainers of one of the most popular GNU/Linux distributions, and CENATIC, the Spanish government's competency centre for open source software, have joined Initiative as part of its affiliate scheme.
The affiliate scheme was announced at FOSDEM in February with an initial membership which included, among others, the Apache Software Foundation, Creative Commons, the Eclipse Foundation, FreeBSD, KDE, the Linux Foundation and the Mozilla Foundation. It is part of the reshaping of the OSI's governance model, being headed up by OSI director Simon Phipps. Phipps said that "It's great to have Debian joining the new affiliate scheme; the project's breadth of experience will be a valuable addition".
The Debian project's announcement says the project is becoming an affiliate to recognise "the OSI's history of efforts towards goals shared by both organisations" but it will maintain its independence on matters of software licences and maintain an independent review process. Debian Project Leader Stefano Zacchiroli added that "while Debian is perfectly suited to face technical challenges, other organisations are better suited to face more political ones, like anti-Free Software corporate FUD, or unjust worldwide laws that make it illegal to share pieces of Free Software. I value the work that OSI is doing in those areas".
The affiliate programme has already had an effect on the OSI's board when earlier this month, the first two affiliate nominated directors were elected to the board, Eclipse Foundation's Executive Director Mike Milinkovich, and Mozilla Foundation nominated attorney Luis Villa. Phipps said that the OSI board is "keen to make progress and having a diverse and representative Affiliate membership is crucial if we are to make well-founded decisions in each of the challenging changes we anticipate".