Open Collective
Open Collective
Welcoming 2024
Published on February 13, 2024 by Lauren Gardner

Hi there! We’re a little late in posting our findings from 2023, so we’ll share some of the things we’re focusing on as we start 2024. 

Reviewing Hosted Collectives

Since 2017, Open Source Collective has provided fiscal sponsorship for open source projects. To better serve our projects, we will review our hosted collectives over the next few weeks to identify collectives that are no longer active, are out of compliance with our terms and conditions, or are projects that have been growing and might need more support. Our goal is to understand the health of our collectives proactively. As a fiscal host, this review is necessary to ensure that we focus our efforts on active open-source projects that comply with our terms of service (link).

We will be sending emails to collectives identified during the review process. For those flagged as inactive or out of compliance, we will provide a list of the infractions or concerns and ask for a response within 30 days. Failure to respond may result in us freezing or un-hosting your collective depending on the state of the collective's infraction, length of inactivity, and balance. Other collectives may receive an email asking how we can better help them achieve their goals for the new year. A response to this email is optional, as your collective will have been found to be in good standing. 

We look forward to learning more about your collective during this process and finding better ways to serve your needs. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us at [email protected].

Collective Survey, We Want to Hear From You

We're conducting a brief survey designed to gather your feedback on how we can better assist your projects, identify your most valuable resources, and understand your preferences for community engagement. Your input is important to us! 

The survey will be open until February 19; you can find it here.  To show our appreciation, we will donate $30 USD to five randomly selected collectives participating in this survey. 

February Community Call, Fundamentals of Open Source Licensing

Join us on Thursday, February 15, for Open Source Collective's monthly community call. 

This month, professor, developer, author, and podcaster, David Kopec will join us to discuss the fundamentals of open source licensing. His talk will cover a range of topics, including why we have licenses, the rights and responsibilities when you incorporate an open source library in your program, best practices, and more. RSVP here to get the calendar invite and video link!

Reminder About Expense Types and Required Information

We process expenses twice a week, on Tuesdays and Thursdays. As a nonprofi, specific details must be on your invoices and reimbursement requests. We need to ensure that all expenses are in furtherance of your project and contribute to the mission of sustaining open source. To ensure your expenses align with our requirements, we recommend reviewing our documentation here before submitting.

When filing an expense, you have two options: invoices and reimbursements. Here is a little more information on when to choose invoice vs reimbursement:

Invoices: Invoices are used to pay individuals for the work they have completed on behalf of the project. When submitting an invoice, you must include details about the type of work done and the timeframe in which the work was performed. Providing links to relevant repositories or blog posts can be very helpful. Our accountants and auditors need this information to ensure compliance, and it also helps people who may need to become more familiar with your project understand the connection. Invoices should never be used to pay someone back.

Reimbursements: On the other hand, reimbursements are used to repay someone for their out-of-pocket expenses incurred on behalf of your project. To process a reimbursement, you must include a receipt from the vendor to verify the expenses.

Our nonprofit status requires us to be diligent in our review of how funds are spent. We must ensure that funds are used for open source-related purposes. Therefore, we cannot provide upfront funds because we cannot guarantee they will be used appropriately. 

You can find more information on what is required on expenses here

Need to Sign a Contract? 

If your collective needs to sign any agreements or contracts, like with sponsors, donors, or vendors, remember to Get OSC permission first. As your fiscal sponsor, agreements must be made between Open Source Collective and the party you wish to enter into an agreement with. As your project’s fiscal sponsor, we review any contract for potential risks or liabilities, which is important to protect your project and OSC.

When you reach out to us, be sure to share with us the contract, who the other party is, what the agreement is regarding, and how it will benefit your project. If the other party does not provide you with a contract, we have contract templates we can use in most instances. 

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