Software Freedom Conservancy, a not-for-profit organization that provides support and legal services for open-source software projects, has urged open-source developers to boycott GitHub and move their projects to other platforms. SFC Policy Fellow, Bradley M. Kuhn, said; “While we will not mandate our existing member projects to move at this time, we will no longer accept new member projects that do not have a long-term plan to migrate away from GitHub.”
SFC asks developers to boycott GitHub after the launch of Copilot
The move to boycott GitHub comes after the recent launch of its AI-powered pair-programmer, Copilot, which collaborates with software developers by suggesting lines or functions as they type. Bradley M. Kuhn, said; “Open source doesn’t mean a complete free-for-all, and there are still license requirements to fulfill and attributions to include, so if Copilot “borrows” code from one project and suggests it to the author of another project, will this open the floodgates to copyright infringement lawsuits?”
The Software Freedom Conservancy has various grievances with GitHub which is mentioned on this ‘Give Up on Github’ website which enlists a detailed guide to boycott GitHub and start experimenting on other platforms. SFC has also announced a long-term plan to assist Fully Free and Open Source (FOSS) projects to migrate away from GitHub.
Github’s Copilot project
Over the past 12 months, more than 1.2 million developers have signed up to use GitHub’s Copilot preview. According to GitHub, more than 40 percent of code is now being written by Copilot. GitHub CEO, Thomas Dohmke, said; “Just like the rise of compilers and open source, we believe AI-assisted coding will fundamentally change the nature of software development, giving developers a new tool to write code easier and faster so they can be happier in their lives.”