The Gephi Consortium

Leading Gephi development


FAQ

  1. What is the Gephi Consortium?
  2. Why a Consortium?
  3. When will it be launched?
  4. What is the structure of the Gephi Consortium?
  5. What is the structure of the Board of Directors?
  6. Who are the members of the Gephi Consortium?
  7. Gephi Software key figures
  8. Who owns the Gephi code?
  9. Can I distribute any of the Gephi Consortium software from my website, by CD, or to my friends, employees or students?
  10. Can I download one copy and install it on lots of machines in my company/school/university/pizzeria?
  11. How can I participate in the Gephi Consortium?
  12. Do I have to sign the CLA to participate?
  13. Who can join as a member?
  14. What are the membership categories in the Gephi Consortium?
  15. What is a Strategic Member?
  16. What is a Corporate Member?
  17. What is an Individual Member?
  18. Do all members pay the same fee?
  19. What is the actual cost of being a Strategic Member?
  20. Where do the funds go?
  21. What is a Project?
  22. What is a Development Programs?
  23. How do you manage projects licenses?
  24. Can I use the Gephi Toolkit on my servers without publishing the code?
  25. Do I have to care with licenses if I don't distribute the application?
  26. If my application uses the Gephi Toolkit, does it have to be released with the same license?
  27. If I modify the source code of the Gephi Toolkit and then use it as a library, do I have to publish the source code?
  28. If I modify the source code of the Gephi Toolkit and integrates its source code, do I have to publish the source code?
  29. Do you accept the dual licensing business model?
  30. How can I use the Gephi trademark?
  31. How can I use the Gephi logo?
  32. Can I modify your logos and distribute the result?
  33. What about use of screenshots etc.?
  34. Doesn't having trademark restrictions contravene the principles of free software?

What is the Gephi Consortium?

The Gephi Consortium is a not-for-profit corporation created to join the efforts of industrials, laboratories and civil society in building Gephi, an open source software for network visualization and analysis.

Why a Consortium?

Since 2008 the Gephi Team progressively opened the project. Choosing a Free Software license - GNU GPLv3 - was the first step, quickly followed by a website and the use of the Launchpad platform. Then one year passed to reach the capability to open the contributions with a new framework, in 2009. Today the software is world famous thanks to our community, and the code base is mature enough to start an international expansion. The Gephi Consortium is our solution to foster the evolution and exploitation of the Gephi Open Source projects in a sustainable way.

The Consortium makes an R&D effort to build generic and reusable parts of Gephi, improve a competitive technology at low cost, and create standards to ensure interoperability. Our mission is to provide core services to the Gephi community, support the development of the Gephi Open Source framework, and help other projects around it like the GEXF universe (format specifications, libraries and Flex applications). We act as a central point to coordinate the worldwide distributed development, promote it and legally protect it.

These goals are only reachable with the financial and in-kind support of the community. Linkfluence SAS, INST-CNRS and WebAtlas NGO have joined us as founding members. They have been selected to their past investments to support Gephi at the early stages.

The ecosystem we set up is made for the benefit of the whole community. The governance is held by a Board of Directors electing the Management Office every three years. The consortium has the right to only receive funding from grants, donations and membership fees to ensure the respect of antitrust laws. Contracts are then held by members on their sole commitment, out of the consortium's responsibility scope.

We expect this way to generate opportunities for companies to build by-products and services, Gephi developers to get hired for their recognized skills, analysts to improve their insights as long as our technology evolves, and academics to use a robust infrastructure for visualization and network science research for free.

When will it be launched?

The Gephi Consortium has officially started on October 1st, 2010.

What is the structure of the Gephi Consortium?

The Gephi Consortium is a non-profit organization governed by the French law of July 1st, 1901, equivalent of the United States 501(c)(3) organization. The Consortium consists of individual members, corporate members, a Management Office and a Board of Directors.

The Management Office shall establish three Councils in order to assist the Board of Directors and provide guidance to the Management Office: an Operations Council, a Technology Council and an Ecosystem Council:

  • The Operations Council is responsible for finance and book-keeping supervision, for audit of operations and for providing legal guidance and resources.
  • The Technology Council is responsible for building the overall technical architecture, including defining technical guidelines, for providing technology validation, for making Project lifecycle decisions, for monitoring production and overall Projects consistency.
  • The Ecosystem Council in responsible for providing recommendations regarding new Projects and new Development Programs, for driving efforts to increase membership, for helping the Association keep current with market and technology trends, for providing PR and marketing and communication guidance, for monitoring brand building efforts, for ensuring message consistency.

In addition to the officers of the corporation, the Board of Directors may establish one or more Project Management Committees, responsible for the active management of one or more projects.

What is the structure of the Board of Directors?

Members of the Board of Directors are elected in the following manner:

  • 1 strategic seat per Strategic Member.
  • 1 founding seat per Founding Member.
  • As many corporate seats as there are Strategic Members in the Association. The corporate directors are designated by companies that are nominated and (re)elected via annual elections by the Corporate Members.
  • 1 community seat for Individual Members. The community director is (re)elected via annual elections by the Individual Members. The community is free to nominate and vote on any member as long as that individual is not employed by a company designating a founding, strategic or corporate director.

Who are the members of the Gephi Consortium?

The current list of the Gephi Consortium members may be found at this page.

Gephi Software key figures

Gephi is an open source software for network visualization and analysis. Like Photoshop™ but for data, Gephi helps data analysts to intuitively reveal patterns and trends, highlight outliers and tells stories with their data.

  • Launched in 2008
  • Development cost evaluated at 2M$ with COCOMO
  • 150,000 lines of code
  • 20 contributors in 8 different countries, translated in English, French and Spanish
  • 33,000 software downloads
  • 600,000 pages viewed/year on gephi.org (estimation 2010)

Who owns the Gephi code?

All software developed within the Consortium belongs to the Gephi Consortium, and therefore the committers. The CLA, signed by every contributor, is a license agreement only; it does not transfer copyright ownership and does not change the committers' rights to use their own contributions for any other purpose.

Can I distribute any of the Gephi Consortium software from my website, by CD, or to my friends, employees or students?

Yes.

Can I download one copy and install it on lots of machines in my company/school/university/pizzeria?

Sure. Our products are Free software, both as in speech and as in beer, and there are no fees or notification requirements. If you plan to reconfigure it and then sell the machines, please contact us.

How can I participate in the Gephi Consortium?

The Gephi Consortium is still in the making. Currently we need help essentially to:

  • finalize the legal documents,
  • organize the Consortium communication,
  • develop membership.

Please contact Sebastien Heymann:

Do I have to sign the CLA to participate?

Yes. In summary, the Contributor License Agreements asserts that when you donate fixes or documentation, you are the owner of your work and allows the Gephi Consortium to use it in every ways possible.

Who can join as a member?

Membership is open to all types of organizations including commercial, educational and governmental organizations, as well as individuals. Any entity which can sign the Membership Agreement can become a Member.

What are the membership categories in the Gephi Consortium?

There has three main categories of membership: Strategic Members, Corporate Members and Individual Members. The dues, rights and duties of all categories are defined in the Membership Agreement [pdf] and are subject to evolve.

What is a Strategic Member?

Strategic Members are legal entities who stand out to provide significant resources to support the Association’s objectives and wish to play an active role both in setting the direction of the Association’s code development activities and facilitating the use and acceptance of the Association’s technology. Strategic Members commit to remain members for a minimum of three (3) consecutive years.

What is a Corporate Member?

Corporate Members are legal entities that wish to contribute to the code development activities of the Association, to participate in the planning and management of the Association’s technology development process and to facilitate the use and acceptance of the Association’s technology.

What is an Individual Member?

Individual Members are individuals such as free-lancers, students and technology enthusiasts who meet the requirements of an Individual Member as set forth in the then current Association Membership Agreement, under the heading “Individual Members”. No paid employee or contractor of a Strategic Member or a Corporate Member shall be considered an Individual Member unless having joined in person as an Individual Member. Likewise no organization shall be considered a Member (either a Strategic Member or a Corporate Member) by the sole virtue of a paid employee or a contractor having joined the Association as an Individual Member.

Do all members pay the same fee?

No. Annual fees are:

  • €10,000 for Strategic Members
  • €3,000 for Corporate Members
  • €45 for Individual Members

Organizations not able to join the Gephi Consortium for any reason but willing to participate in a Development Program are registered as Associate Organization for free. However it does not confer any Membership right in the Gephi Consortium.

What is the actual cost of being a Strategic Member?

Strategic Members are organizations which commit their dues for three years as well as in-kind contribution such as full time staff to help run the organization.

Where do the funds go?

We focus on the specifications and development of the Gephi Open Source core. This R&D effort for building generic and reusable parts is only made possible by the collaboration of multiple companies, research laboratories and organizations.

While all of the administrative effort is currently through unpaid volunteers, we also need financial assistance to keep our work running. Expenses include:

  • Server costs
  • Legal and Accounting
  • Normal office expenses
  • Marketing and PR.

What is a Project?

The Consortium’s activities for software development are organized into Projects. A Project regroups development actions corresponding to one or more technical software components, or the integration of different technical components in order to build a platform.

What is a Development Programs?

Members participation to the source code are undertaken during Development Programs. A Development Program is a close technological cooperation between the Association and the Member to improve some parts of the technical ecosystem. Multiple Members can join the same Development Program to lower costs.


Intellectual Property Rights FAQ

How do you manage projects licenses?

In this answer, a "license" means a given version of a given license.

1) License choice

Any OSS license may be accepted, as defined by our Intellectual Property Rights Policy (paragraph 1.7) [pdf]. The Board makes the final decision. When accepted, the license should be immediately published on the project's web pages.

2) License change

Any license change requires a Board decision. When accepted, the license change should be immediately published on the project's web pages.

3) Board decision guidelines

  • Should not arbitrarily ban any OSS business model.
  • Should not affect negatively any member's business model (eg. dual-licensing, subscription...).
  • Should foster reusability of the Consortium components (mainly core framework - beware of usage restrictions).
  • Should not impede cross-project collaborations.
  • Should exercise regulation (eg. prevent appropriation of OSS components, reject a project that is not perceived as truly OSS, act as a "referee" to solve conflicts...).
  • Should not allow a licence change toward more restrictive usage terms, unless the Consortium has strong strategic reasons to do so.
  • Should take into account the project "class" (eg. "generic core", "application"...) to make the final decision.

Can I use the Gephi Toolkit on my servers without publishing the code?

Yes, unless you modify the source code of the Gephi Toolkit.

If my application uses the Gephi Toolkit, does it have to be released with the same license?

The Gephi Toolkit is designed to be used as a library, so you are free to choose the license of your application.

Do I have to care with licenses if I don't distribute the application?

No.

If I modify the source code of the Gephi Toolkit and then use it as a library, do I have to publish the source code?

Yes, you have to publish the modified source code of the Gephi Toolkit if you distribute it. However you do not have to do so with the whole application.

If I modify the source code of the Gephi Toolkit and integrates its source code, do I have to publish the source code?

Yes, but only the modified source code of the Gephi Toolkit.

Do you accept the dual licensing business model?

Yes. The Gephi Consortium recognizes that its members may choose to engage in dual licensing business practices. Each Member remains free to license outside of the Project hosted by the Consortium its own software contribution under any other license. The rule is that commercial companies engaged in dual licensing business model must allow third-party committers on the code.

Gephi software is itself distributed in dual license (CDDL and GNU GPLv3) by the Gephi Consortium. Contact us to learn more.

How can I use the Gephi trademark?

The appropriate trademark symbol (TM or similar) should appear with at least the first use of any Gephi Consortium trademarks within a document or graphic, and with all occurences of the Gephi Consortium logos.

When you use a Gephi trademark or logo, you should include a statement attributing the trademark to The Gephi Consortium. For example, "Gephi Desktop and Gephi Toolkit are trademarks of The Gephi Consortium."

  • You may not incorporate the Gephi trademark (the name "Gephi") into the name of your company or software product name.
  • It is acceptable to include the Gephi trademark in the name of a publication, certification program, domain-name or book. However, you must ensure that a) the appropriate TM symbol and attribution (as discussed below) is associated with the Gephi reference, b) Gephi is not concatenated with another word, e.g.- GephiBoard, and c) the usage does not imply or make the user believe that your work is supported or endorsed by the Gephi Consortium.
  • Gephi should always be capitalized.

How can I use the Gephi logo?

See our Visual Identity guidelines.

Can I modify your logos and distribute the result?

Please don't. The logos are trademarked, and so if the result is confusingly similar to the original, or used in a confusing manner, it's a violation of trademark law.

What about use of screenshots etc.?

Approval is not required for the following fair uses of the Gephi Consortium marks:

  1. screenshots of our software or our web site in magazine articles or reviews of our software
  2. the inclusion of Mozilla browser windows in screenshots of other web sites for non-commercial uses such as web site reviews
  3. on-screen displays of the Gephi Consortium products in television programs or movies.

You may also use screenshots of the Gephi Consortium products in commercial books and publications, both where the products are the focus and where they are not (e.g. screenshots of web pages or emails).

Doesn't having trademark restrictions contravene the principles of free software?

No. Many free software licenses explicitly exclude rights to trademarks, and so trademark restrictions on otherwise free software is accepted by the community. We are using our trademarks as a mark of quality to protect consumers - we think this is very much within the principles of free software.

If your question isn't covered here, time to move on to the Trademark Policy document (download ).

IP FAQ

Go to the Intellectual Property Rights FAQ here.

Want to Talk?

Please contact us at <consortium@gephi.org>