Tech giants aren’t philanthropies. There’s a reason they’re betting on open source: it’s good for business.

Smaller companies need open source contribution policies too, but those can be radically simple.

Photo by Nikola Johnny Mirkovic on Unsplash

Software foundations have increasingly started helping non-corporate backed contributors with travel expenses. W3C has been lagging way behind. Until last year, “invited experts”—W3C jargon for individual contributors—even had to pay to attend the technical conference in which they come work for free. It’s time for change.

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According to GitHub’s 2017 open source survey, 37% of contributors to open source projects don’t know whether their work contract allows them to contribute to open source outside of work. Another 12% need to get permission before doing so.

Photo by Parker Gibbons on Unsplash

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Kerri Evelyn Harris photographed by Corey Torpie (CC BY 2.0)

Developers often intuitively assess the health of open source dependencies they decide to take on. What can we learn from their practice?

How open source widens wage and position gaps in tech and what companies can do about it.

Photo by Josh Appel on Unsplash

Tobie Langel

Open Source & Web Standards Consultant.

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