Shortly after the 2011 EDUCAUSE Conference, Sakai and Jasig announced a community naming process for the new, merged organization we proposed a year before. We wanted suggestions for Foundation names that were memorable and reflected the core values of the merged organization which we previously articulated in the “Value of a Common Foundation”. In announcing the outcomes of this naming process today, it is important to emphasize that the new organization will have a strong focus on existing software communities and project brands. Names such as Sakai and uPortal won’t go away, they will remain an essential element of reaching constituents old and new.
The Founding Board, which was elected by the Jasig and Sakai Foundation Boards in October (2011) to take the lead on merger decisions, is excited to announce that the name of the new organization we are proposing will be the Apereo Foundation (listen to pronunciation). The name is a combination of community suggestions, and represents the fusion of two Latin words, “aperto”, which means “open” and “mereo”, meaning merit. Given the importance of openness and meritocracy, in all its forms and flavors, to both organizations as well as the larger open-source movement, the merging of these Latin words to form Apereo resonated with the Founding Board. Combining the suggestions was also helpful in securing the domain name.
We will begin to use Apereo as the name of the proposed new organization in our communication moving forward. However this is not intended to indicate the merger is complete; nor assumed as, most importantly, a majority vote by our collective membership is required to gain approval. To this end, the announcement of the proposed Foundation name is being used to launch a larger communication initiative. Over the coming four weeks we will release additional information, the first of which will be posted the week of March 26th, and create opportunities for conversations about the path ahead. These will include discussion lists, webinars, and other opportunities for community engagement on issues related to the merger. This will culminate in a membership vote to approve the merger which will take place in late-April 2012.
Finally, those who suggested the names we selected have generously donated the prizes we were offering to participants in our forthcoming June conference. We’ll come up with some exciting ideas to put them to good use at the event!
If you have questions or comments on the name please post them to the Jasig-Sakai Collaboration Google Group (subscribe at:http://groups.google.com/group/jasig-sakai-collaboration)