Sustain Weekly - March Summary

Every Friday, we host a weekly call to document, share, and respond to current events in open source sustainability. Read more.

We hope you can join our next call this Friday at 16:00 UTC (12pm ET / 5pm BST). Here is a summary of all our March calls. This is the last group of summaries from our past calls as we tested this idea. After this, we’ll be posting summaries from our public calls.

March 25th, 2022

The big news this week – the reason you’re reading this right now – Sustain’s new Code of Conduct was put in place and the forum re-opened :tada:. An FAQ was added to include more transparency in the process and help clarify scope.

Also happening this week: Kyle E. Mitchell published The Russians Are Coming (so we invited him to the Sustian podcast). Season of Docs is kicking off (org applications just closed). Finally, the Open Source Community Africa (OSCA) Sustain event happened – we can’t wait to hear how it went.

March 18th, 2022

The OSI published the headline “Court affirms it’s false advertising to claim software is Open Source when it’s not” on the Neo4j appeal, but the case might be a bit more nuanced. While this might not decide the meaning of “open source”, it is an interesting win, if you consider that removing the Commons Clause was held up as something not allowable while still marketing code as “free and open source” under the AGPL.

At FOSS Backstage, Richard interviewed 9 people over 4 hours in 1 day (:astonished:!). Eriol helped in the UX Clinic hosted by Open Source Design. Some personal highlights included Maurizio Gazzola’s keynote on How Open Source (Culture) can benefit the Sustainable Development Goals.

An author of nope-ipc sabotaged the library to protest the Russo-Ukrainian War. While this is a fascinating approach to alternative warfare, it opens up many more questions on security, the consequences for public authors, and whether npm’s libraries (that vary in size and impact) make them more vulnerable for attack.



Mar 25: Abby Cabunoc Mayes, Allen Gunn, Richard Littauer. Mar 18: Abby Cabunoc Mayes, Justin Dorfman, Richard Littauer, Eriol Fox.

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Very interesting!

Slightly worrying that Kem in their blog post is treating massive unilateral sanctions against all Russians (which have empirically been shown to not only fail at insighting revolution but also harm disproportionately the most poor and vulnerable people) as a golden opportunity for for profit tech companies to hire cheap labor and clean up their image. I hope this was explored in the podcast episode!

Thanks for the update Abby! :slight_smile:


Thanks @Nolski! I’m not sure if @RichardLitt has recorded that episode yet, but I’m sure it’ll be an interesting listen.

How about the meeting link? I tried joining BBB last week, but I was the only one on the link. I have also registers using the zoom link but did not get any invite link.

So sorry @Anita_Ihuman! We’ll be on the BBB link this week – details in the notes: Sustain Weekly Discussions - Google Docs

We know the logistics haven’t been the clearest while we figure out what works best for the community. Thanks for sticking around and hopefully things will be smoother going forward!

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I’m not sure what you mean here… Your choice of words is somewhat puzzling me: what’s a business license? What do you consider a win, exactly?

Thanks @smaffulli!

I took that wording directly from our meeting notes that day – maybe @jdorfman, @RichardLitt, or @Erioldoesdesign could add some clarity? Sorry, I normally wordsmith a bit more when summarizing, but I had only skimmed those articles.

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Good question, Stefano. I think this was probably just a spelling error from something I tried to say, which was really just recapping Kyle Mitchell’s post. I think a better way of saying this would have been “It is an interesting win, if you consider that removing the Commons Clause was held up as something not allowable while still marketing code as “free and open source” under the AGPL”. I’m not sure what I meant by business licenses, and I am most definitely, 100% not a lawyer. I’ll try and be more guarded on this topic in the future!

Thanks for the spot check. :slight_smile:


Thanks @RichardLitt – I’ve updated the summary above!