After years of increasing involvement and engagement in open source software projects and communities, Microsoft on Thursday announced to formally join the Open Source Initiative (OSI) as a Premium Sponsor. Launched in 1998, the OSI is a global non-profit dedicated to promoting and protecting open source software through education, collaboration and infrastructure. Microsoft joins the likes of Google, IGM, HPE and GitHub as top sponsors of the OSI. Other sponsors are RedHat, The Linux Foundation, Mozilla and HP. “This is a significant milestone for the OSI and the open source software movement more broadly,” Patrick Masson, OSI General Manager and Board Director, said in a statement.
For many in the open source software community, it was Microsoft’s release of .NET in 2014 under an open source license that may fave first caught their attention. Microsoft has increasingly participated in open source projects and communities as users, contributors, and creators, and has released even more open source products like Visual Studio Code and Typescript. “As Microsoft engages with open source communities more broadly and deeply, we are excited to support the Open Source Initiative’s efforts,” added Jeff McAffer, Director of Microsoft’s Open Source Programme’s Office.