A Short History
The Inclusive Naming Initiative was born out of the efforts by the Kubernetes community to address non inclusive language, which coalesced with the Black Lives Matter movement that rose to prominence last year.
Kubernetes is the fastest growing open-source software project in history and is now used by companies around the world to make software development faster, and better. As a leading force, Kubernetes has set the bar for many software projects. However, Kubernetes wanted to include the larger community because nothing in open source is ever done alone. Open-source is created by a global community of developers. The very ethos of open-source is that many minds working together can produce a better outcome and that everybody who uses the OSS software can then share in the benefits. Thus, the Inclusive Naming Initiative was born to give every organization, project, company, individual, and body, the language and tools to make their work more inclusive and welcoming.
How We Work
The Inclusive Naming Initiative is a working group that was formed to inform the decisions that are ultimately made by software standards setting bodies. INI is not a standards setting body, nor a replacement for one, INI is working in partnership with the various standards bodies in a supportive way, to inform the work they do around changing non-inclusive terms.
INI aims to provide our industry, including standards bodies, with documentation on how to change terms without depreciation, frameworks, a glossary of offensive coding terms that should be changed, and developer input on how to make the changes so that they are made everywhere, not just in one company, or in one open source software project.
INI provides a home for developers to collaborate on how to best do this work. We do not want software code that is non-inclusive because it is harmful to society. Nor do we want software code that breaks because changes made in one place don’t translate down the line. As we all work together towards a unifying goal, we’ll get these changes made faster with less disruption to the software that runs companies around the world. The key thing to remember, this work will never be finished and a standard is not absolute. Nor is everyone going to agree all the time, but INI shows there are plenty of us who are committed to making change.
How to get involved
We are always looking for new contributors and we would love to have you onboard. The easiest place to start is to join the mailing list: firstname.lastname@example.org , and identify yourself and your company. Join a workstream that fits your interest whether it be open source or marketing, we have a space for everyone no matter their background. We are also looking for people to step up and tell the stories around inclusive language in their organizations and be included in our blog. Please reach out to the marketing Slack channel with your story.
Next, view the project board and file issues . The Project Board is where we track the work being done for the Inclusive naming initiative. You can also file issues for work you’d like to see or open questions you have via the inclusivenaming/org repository .
Finally, make changes in your projects! Use the resources we’ve compiled so far – Word replacement list , Implementation path , and the Language evaluation framework framework and start making changes in your own projects! This is the most impactful way to get involved and our goal as an initiative.