This week brought some very welcome news to Drupal fans around the world. The Drupal Association was formed putting a more business front end on the Drupal development community. All of the cool FOSS kids are doing it.Dries Buytaert (founder) and the core group of developers decided that there wasn't enough cohesiveness to the administrative side of the Drupal development team and over the past few years have been drawing up plans for an organization.
The idea is that by handling administrative tasks, such as event management and fund raising, the Drupal Association frees resources within the community to focus on improving the Drupal project. It also provides the opportunity for individuals and businesses to be formally recognized as supporters of the project. All work being done for the Association is on a volunteer basis.
Many in the community have wondered if the Drupal association will be directly involved with the evolution of the code. The answer, from the website is:
The Drupal Association has no say in either the planning or development of the Drupal open source project itself. This is left solely in the very capable hands of the community. The Drupal Association could not, for example, dictate that in the next version of Drupal users should become node.
The Drupal Association, as stated in its charter, is set up for the following purposes:
* Accept and distribute money in the form of grants or donations
* Organize, sponsor and represent the Drupal project at events and gatherings
* Be the defacto body to represent Drupal in partnerships
* Maintaining, scaling, upgrading, and improving the Drupal.org infrastructure
* Support development by awarding grants or distributing wages.
* Write and publish press releases and promotional materials.
Now you might be saying, why association and not foundation like Mozilla and company? It turns out that in Belgium, where the Drupal Association is incorporated, an Association is a "not-for-profit organization" in general, whereas a "foundation", while also being a non-profit, usually serves a more general, social goal (such as healthcare, or poverty). Drupal Association it is.