[OpenStack Foundation] OpenStack Foundation

mark at openstack.org mark at openstack.org
Thu Jan 5 20:16:22 UTC 2012

As Jim mentioned, I'm going to focus on establishing the foundation this year and am really excited to be able to dedicate the time and attention it deserves, alongside Jonathan, Stef, and many others.  I've found myself spread a bit too thin the past few months, as I'm sure we all have in the crazy whirlwind of the OpenStack universe. 

To kick things off I've created a Foundation page on the wiki and published a "Foundation Mission" draft for comment as well a a rough timeline for the next couple of months:  http://wiki.openstack.org/Governance/Foundation

The first thing you'll notice is that I tried to keep it simple and stay out of the questions of HOW the foundation will achieve the mission, because I think it's good to start with an idea of the purpose before debating the many ways in which a foundation could be structured to achieve it (as several people pointed out on the list).  So much of the HOW is too be discussed, debated, and ultimately determined, but if you look at the timeline you'll see that in about a month our goal is t have a draft structure to review with everyone.  I'm hopeful that we can rally around the Mission between now and then and get it finalized.

Jonathan and I will host a webinar in the next week or so as an additional method of gathering feedback.  We are also thinking an in person meeting in February in Santa Clara might be helpful, and can add other forums.  And of course we'll have lots of time dedicated during the Conference in April, details of which are coming together so stay tuned for an update on that from Lauren & Stef very soon.

Cell:  512-791-0356

-----Original Message-----
From: "Jim Curry" <jim.curry at rackspace.com>
Sent: Thursday, January 5, 2012 1:42pm
To: "openstack at lists.launchpad.net" <openstack at lists.launchpad.net>, "foundation at lists.openstack.org" <foundation at lists.openstack.org>
Subject: [OpenStack Foundation] OpenStack Foundation

Foundation mailing list
Foundation at lists.openstack.org

First, an apology.  It has been 3 months since we announced our intention to move OpenStack into a foundation in 2012.  Since that time, we have done a poor job of updating you on the status of our efforts and involving you in the process.  Jan,  Cole, Ryan and others are all more than justified in asking for better communication.  We are going to improve our efforts starting today and will continue to actively communicate with you throughout the formation of the foundation.  Responsibility and accountability for this effort at Rackspace rests with me, so I offer my apologies and promise that this will be improved.

So now for the update.  In reality, there has been a ton of work occurring to build a proposal that can serve as the basis for a constructive community conversation.  I firmly believe that the best way to have a conversation with a group as diverse and large as the OpenStack community is to start with a very defined proposal that everyone can react to — positively or negatively.  This proposal is not meant to be anything other than a framework to manage the discussion.  No decisions are being made without the involvement of the broad community.  Trying to handle the large number of complex issues over a mailing list without a base framework would be impossible to manage.  It is also unfair to community members who don't live on the mailing lists day to day, but do want to review the plans and provide comments.  We are basing this initial proposal on a lot of input received from the community and beyond — developers, users, companies, other open source projects and foundations, lawyers, specific country experts, etc.  As you might imagine, the diversity of opinion received is large (we are not a shy group!) and pulling that together into a starting point in and of itself is a challenge.   But we are about done with it and will be posting the initial proposal in the next few days.  Looking back on our initial setup of OpenStack, I wish we had had more time to have solicited broader input and completed additional diligence as there are likely decisions that would have been made differently.  In the hopefully long life of the OpenStack foundation, I believe a 3 month investment in setting up the right framework for a discussion is a justified investment.

Rackspace has a number of resources dedicated to this effort:

1.  Jonathan Bryce has been 100% focused on this effort since the announcement, and has been actively soliciting feedback from the constituencies I mentioned above.
2.  Mark Collier has given up his other responsibilities to focus on getting the foundation setup with Jonathan.
3.  Alice King is leading the legal efforts and actively working with other legal counsel in the community

We also have numerous other team members devoting a substantial portion of their time to the foundation including our community manager, Stefano Maffulli, and other members of my team.  Not to mention those of you who have generously helped along the way!

I sincerely appreciate the goodwill the community demonstrates towards Rackspace.  We are not perfect, and we absolutely make mistakes along the way.  Its easiest to assume the worst — that Rackspace has ill intentions or is incompetent in the management of this process.  But the vast majority of you are supportive even if we don't always deserve your support.  Many outside this community are eagerly seeking signs of division.  Lets please not give it to them.  I am asking for your trust that we are good to our word, and that we will transition this project from Rackspace to you as soon as possible.  Rackspace wants the foundation to happen as much as any member of this community does.  We committed to you that it will happen in 2012, and it will — hopefully sooner rather than later.  But much work remains to be done, and we need your active feedback, support, and patience during this process.

I look forward to working with you on this effort in the coming months.

Jim Curry

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