The Future of Open Source
By UCLA Institute for Technology, Law & Policy
Friday, October 15th 2021
12:00 pm – 1:15 pm PDT
This online event explores proposed “ethical” open source licenses, to scope them within broader drives towards accountability in the tech sector.
About this online event
In the decades since the term was first coined, open-source software has become a foundation for the Internet. Around three-quarters of businesses leverage open-source software in some form, from giant companies like Amazon, Microsoft, and Google, to leading non-profit and community-based projects like Wikipedia and Creative Commons. However, the proliferation of dystopian technologies which may be built on the backs of open source programs, such as all-powerful facial recognition and surveillance networks and even autonomous weapons systems, has led some to question the foundational belief in the ethical neutrality of technology which has traditionally been at the core of the open source movement. At what point should our optimism about the transformative impact of new technologies give way to a more nuanced understanding of the harms and risks that have begun to manifest, and how should these considerations be reflected in our approach to licensing?
This panel series will explore the interplay between ethics and open source licensing, and in particular will consider whether proposals to embed human rights principles into new standard-form open source licenses are practical, legally effective, and beneficial to ongoing efforts to support human rights in the tech space.
Panel 3 – The Ethical Stack
Licensure is one component of efforts to promote ethics and responsibility across the tech industry, but how does it fit within the broader accountability ecosystem? This panel will explore questions of ethics and accountability more broadly:
- Sarah Hinchliff Pearson, Senior Counsel, Creative Commons
- Coraline Ada Ehmke,, Founder and Executive Director, Organization for Ethical Source
- Stephen LaPorte, Legal Director, Wikimedia Foundation
Nathan Schneider, Assistant Professor of Media Studies, University of Colorado
Date(s) - Oct 15, 2021
12:00 pm PDT - 1:15 pm PDT