Scoring FOSS projects based on the four freedoms #6

Open
opened 10 months ago by circlebuilder · 2 comments
Owner

I just got the following idea, which I mentioned in the ReverseEagle (RE) Matrix chatroom:

What if instead of a DeGoogle project, where contributors should do the work, instead you would have a site with a Scorecard for FOSS projects. This would have a checklist sort-of form where everyone can enter new projects, which are then subsequently validated based on a checklist of criteria.

The checklist would go further than just using Google stuffz, like 'do they use Gitter, or a FOSS alternative', 'are they on github, or a better code forge', etcetera.

Based on this they would get a label or a badge that shows their score, and there would be a Leaderboard with the best, most free FOSS projects listed on top. There might be even a kind of 'shaming' effect for the ones that do very badly.

This approach would turn your work methods around, and the project maintainers themselves are inclined to make the improvements without RE having to file all the issues and PR's all of the time.

The badges might also be created in a way as to rank within a software category, like: "Ranked in top 3 website analytics project that respects your freedoms". The maintainer may wear the badge proudly in their README and on their site, and it is a 'competitive advantage' that way, and a further stimulus for others in the same category to improve as well.

When maintainers make improvements they send an update to the checklist (which can be verified), and based on that you can do RE promo (e.g. on Fedi), saying: 'These projects made this and that improvement', or 'Project X made it to the gold status in this category. Congratulations @projectx", etcetera.

The idea itself is not that hard. In DeGoogle you say: "You have Google trackers.. you could be a better FOSS project". This is a criterium that would lower your score. Each of the trackers could be part of the checklist, Google Fonts, Google AdSense, etc. You are less compliant to the 4 freedoms if you check more boxes, and you'll get ranked accordingly.

If you rank very well, and e.g. you use FOSS for your entire toolchain, then you are entitled to proudly show that using a badge or other honorary thing. And you'll be promoted as such: An Exemplar of FOSS.

If you rank badly you are more or less in "The Hall of Shame" (in quotes, because it is not really a hall of shame. It is merely an incentive to change. It can be very implicit, like a filter for "Projects that need most help" or something of that nature), and that's an incentive to improve, and you'll be 'rewarded' by good publicity.

It is not RE that needs to maintain all these lists. On the website anyone can do the work. Similar a bit to how on AlternativeTo.net anyone can record/refine softwares.

The website/service provides insight in the whole "FOSS supply chain" as it were. One could say that it focuses on Fairtrade FOSS that way.

(Take for example Fairphone where the whole supply chain matters. Even if Apple mobiles were perfectly privacy-respecting, there's still modern-day slaves working to put them together. Nowhere near fairtrade. In FOSS that uses Big Tech tools and such, the concept similarly applies.)

(Note that within innercircles in due time I want to start a teaserbot campaign, named fossy logic which is about everything promoting FOSS, and this would fit perfectly.)

I just got the following idea, which I mentioned in the [ReverseEagle](https://reverseeagle.org/) (RE) Matrix [chatroom](https://matrix.to/#/#reverseeagle:linuxcafe.chat): What if instead of a DeGoogle project, where contributors should do the work, instead you would have a site with a Scorecard for FOSS projects. This would have a checklist sort-of form where everyone can enter new projects, which are then subsequently validated based on a checklist of criteria. The checklist would go further than just using Google stuffz, like 'do they use Gitter, or a FOSS alternative', 'are they on github, or a better code forge', etcetera. Based on this they would get a label or a badge that shows their score, and there would be a Leaderboard with the best, most free FOSS projects listed on top. There might be even a kind of 'shaming' effect for the ones that do very badly. This approach would turn your work methods around, and the project maintainers themselves are inclined to make the improvements without RE having to file all the issues and PR's all of the time. The badges might also be created in a way as to rank within a software category, like: "Ranked in top 3 website analytics project that respects your freedoms". The maintainer may wear the badge proudly in their README and on their site, and it is a 'competitive advantage' that way, and a further stimulus for others in the same category to improve as well. When maintainers make improvements they send an update to the checklist (which can be verified), and based on that you can do RE promo (e.g. on Fedi), saying: 'These projects made this and that improvement', or 'Project X made it to the gold status in this category. Congratulations @projectx", etcetera. The idea itself is not that hard. In DeGoogle you say: "You have Google trackers.. you could be a better FOSS project". This is a criterium that would lower your score. Each of the trackers could be part of the checklist, Google Fonts, Google AdSense, etc. You are less compliant to the 4 freedoms if you check more boxes, and you'll get ranked accordingly. If you rank very well, and e.g. you use FOSS for your entire toolchain, then you are entitled to proudly show that using a badge or other honorary thing. And you'll be promoted as such: An Exemplar of FOSS. If you rank badly you are more or less in "The Hall of Shame" (in quotes, because it is not really a hall of shame. It is merely an incentive to change. It can be very implicit, like a filter for "Projects that need most help" or something of that nature), and that's an incentive to improve, and you'll be 'rewarded' by good publicity. It is not RE that needs to maintain all these lists. On the website anyone can do the work. Similar a bit to how on AlternativeTo.net anyone can record/refine softwares. The website/service provides insight in the whole "FOSS supply chain" as it were. One could say that it focuses on **Fairtrade FOSS** that way. (Take for example Fairphone where the whole supply chain matters. Even if Apple mobiles were perfectly privacy-respecting, there's still modern-day slaves working to put them together. Nowhere near fairtrade. In FOSS that uses Big Tech tools and such, the concept similarly applies.) (Note that within innercircles in due time I want to start a [teaserbot](https://codeberg.org/teaserbot-labs/) campaign, named **fossy logic** which is about everything promoting FOSS, and this would fit perfectly.)

The website/service provides insight in the whole "FOSS supply chain" as it were. One could say that it focuses on Fairtrade FOSS that way.

Sounds like CII Best Practices Badge. Maybe it can be extended.

I work on badges for projects that are FOSS, community projects and sustainable (mostly how they are funded). For the start it's in german. Maybe you understand it? https://gutesoftware.de/

The end goal could be that those badges are shown in "AppStores", so the user can make an informed decision what they install on their system.

Right now i focus on funding at snowdrift.coop.

>The website/service provides insight in the whole "FOSS supply chain" as it were. One could say that it focuses on Fairtrade FOSS that way. Sounds like [CII Best Practices Badge](https://bestpractices.coreinfrastructure.org/en). Maybe it can be extended. I work on badges for projects that are FOSS, community projects and sustainable (mostly how they are funded). For the start it's in german. Maybe you understand it? https://gutesoftware.de/ The end goal could be that those badges are shown in "AppStores", so the user can make an informed decision what they install on their system. Right now i focus on funding at [snowdrift.coop](https://snowdrift.coop/).
Poster
Owner

Hi @davidak

Thank you for these pointers. Yes, the CII Best Practices Badge is a good example of an (extensive) checklist to be used to gauge badge eligibility. In their case it is an all-or-nothing approach, and the verification needs to be done by the organization.

Additional resources for CII Best Practices Badge:

This idea is about having the checklist compliance be crowdsourced, and badge eligibility to exist at many levels by the score indicator on the badge.

PS. Yes, I can read German (Dutch myself :), and that site is on the right idea. I also follow Snowdrift with interest (via Matrix). I pointed out delightful-funding (and the collection issue), and if you want to PR Snowdrift, then ... :D

Hi @davidak Thank you for these pointers. Yes, the CII Best Practices Badge is a good example of an (extensive) checklist to be used to gauge badge eligibility. In their case it is an all-or-nothing approach, and the verification needs to be done by the organization. Additional resources for CII Best Practices Badge: - [Github repository](https://github.com/coreinfrastructure/best-practices-badge) - [Original (old) markdown with the criteria](https://github.com/coreinfrastructure/best-practices-badge/blob/master/doc/criteria.md) This idea is about having the checklist compliance be crowdsourced, and badge eligibility to exist at many levels by the score indicator on the badge. PS. Yes, I can read German (Dutch myself :), and that site is on the right idea. I also follow Snowdrift with interest (via Matrix). I pointed out [delightful-funding](https://codeberg.org/teaserbot-labs/delightful-funding) (and the [collection issue](https://codeberg.org/teaserbot-labs/delightful-funding/issues/1)), and if you want to PR Snowdrift, then ... :D
Sign in to join this conversation.
No Milestone
No Assignees
2 Participants
Notifications
Due Date

No due date set.

Dependencies

This issue currently doesn't have any dependencies.

Loading…
There is no content yet.