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The OpenStack Foundation Legal Documents /


Appendix 9


I. Introduction.

OpenStack Foundation (“Foundation”) was formed to involve interested companies and individuals in a collaborative effort to support a collection of open source technology that provides massively scalable open source cloud computing software. Because some of the participants (“Members”) will include competitors, these activities are subject to antitrust laws. While coordination among competitors to achieve pro-competitive goals and efficiencies is perfectly legal under the antitrust laws, it is important to identify conduct that raises concerns under the antitrust laws and be sure that antitrust risks are avoided.   

It is the express policy of the Foundation to require that all activities of the Foundation, and any committees organized under its auspices, be conducted strictly in accordance with U.S. federal and state antitrust laws and foreign antitrust laws. The Foundation will not become involved in the competitive business decisions of its Members nor will it take or support any action that would tend to restrain competition in violation of antitrust laws.  

II. Membership and participation policies.

The requirements for Membership and participation should be reasonable and nondiscriminatory, and those requirements should be applied in an impartial manner.

III. Meetings and communications.

Members should avoid activities or communications that are extraneous to the group’s purposes. These guidelines apply equally to formal meetings and social gatherings.

IV. Provision of services.

Members should generally refrain from considering, discussing or implementing any market allocation program or agreements that would result in discriminatory treatment of actual or potential Members or anticompetitive effects visited upon consumers.

V. Quasi-standard setting activities.

To the extent that Members develop and implement standards (recommended protocols, solutions, methods, configurations of products, etc.), the antitrust laws will consider the extent to which such standards are commercially nondiscriminatory and compliance is voluntary .

Once again, these are general guidelines, and this is a complex, evolving area of the law. Each Member should consult with its own counsel on issues related to participation, license development and/or licensing, IP rights and other competitively sensitive issues raised by its membership in the Foundation.

VI. Competition.

Nothing contained in this policy should be construed to prohibit or limit a Member from making, using, selling, marketing, or promoting products that do not embody or make use of OpenStack technology. Members are not required to exclusively use, announce, or promote OpenStack tools or specifications. Members are free to design, develop, manufacture, acquire or market their respective products in any lawful way.

VII. Permitted Member Conduct

In addition to other legally permissible activities, Members may engage in the following conduct:

This Policy is not intended to be legal advice. In some cases, out of an abundance of caution, these guidelines may go beyond the requirements of the antitrust laws and the fact that certain conduct may be prohibited should not be viewed as indicating that such conduct would violate the law. Members assume responsibility to provide appropriate legal counsel to their representatives regarding compliance with this policy.

If you have a question regarding these matters, contact your own counsel or OpenStack counsel to be named.