OpenJS Foundation welcomes AMP project to help improve user experience on the web

By October 10, 2019 Announcement, Blog, Project Update

AMP enters the open source foundation to broaden open governance, drive diverse, cross-industry adoption and continue improving the web for all.

NEW YORK– October 10, 2019 — The OpenJS Foundation, providing vendor-neutral support for sustained growth within the open source JavaScript community, announced today that the open source web component framework AMP will be joining the Foundation’s incubation program. The news was delivered at the AMP Contributor Summit 2019 in New York City. 

“AMP is a great example of a community and technology focused on improving web performance and experience for all,” said Robin Ginn, Executive Director of the OpenJS Foundation, “On behalf of the Foundation, I am happy to welcome AMP and I look forward to seeing their progress to support a faster, open web.”

Now in its fourth year, AMP, a multi-stakeholder open source project initially backed by Google and used across a broad range of organizations, allows any publisher to have pages load quickly on mobile devices. Used in billions of pages on more than 30 million domains, AMP integrates with countless products and companies, including Google and Microsoft who each implement their own AMP Cache.

As a continuation of its adoption of an open governance model in late 2018, AMP’s cross-industry Technical Steering Committee agreed that the next step would be to submit an application for the project to join the OpenJS Foundation. This decision was further supported by its Advisory Committee representing constituencies from publishers, CDNs, browser vendors, open web advocates, and e-commerce and platform companies.

After completing the incubation process and officially joining the OpenJS Foundation, AMP will enable a wider variety of contributions from a wider audience, both technical and strategic. Additionally, a move to the OpenJS Foundation aims to develop and showcase the entirety of AMP’s benefits and capabilities, outside of the advantages to publishers. 

“Now in our fourth year, AMP is excited for the next step on our journey,” said Malte Ubl, Member of the AMP Project Technical Steering Committee. “We’ve been considering the best home for AMP for some time. We decided on the OpenJS Foundation because we feel it’s the best place for us to help us to cater to our diverse group of constituencies. This step builds on previous moves we’ve made toward open governance and helps us focus on transparency and openness.”

“As a Platinum member of the OpenJS Foundation and huge proponent for thriving open-source communities, we are thrilled to see AMP take this step with the Foundation,” said Myles Borins, Developer Advocate for Google and OpenJS Foundation Board Vice Chairperson.“The opportunity to improve the web is vast, and AMP has a role to play in that. We see no better place for AMP to accomplish these goals than with the OpenJS Foundation.”

“As an AMP contributor and framework user having integrated AMP into different products including owning our own AMP Cache, we fully support and encourage this move,” said Saulo Santos, Engineering Manager, Bing Experiences, Microsoft. “AMP is helping to improve the web, and entering it into the Foundation will only be a continuation of these efforts.”

About OpenJS Foundation 

The OpenJS Foundation is committed to supporting the healthy growth of the JavaScript ecosystem and web technologies by providing a neutral organization to host and sustain projects, as well as collaboratively fund activities for the benefit of the community at large. The OpenJS Foundation is made up of 32 open source JavaScript projects including Appium, Dojo, jQuery, Node.js, and webpack and is supported by 30 corporate and end-user members, including GoDaddy, Google, IBM, Intel, Joyent, and Microsoft. These members recognize the interconnected nature of the JavaScript ecosystem and the importance of providing a central home for projects which represent significant shared value. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is AMP joining the OpenJS Foundation?

AMP has been taking very thoughtful steps to ensure its long-term commitment to its vision (A strong, user-first open web forever) and mission (Provide a user-first format for web content, supporting the long-term success of every web publisher, merchant, and advertiser).

In 2018, after community concerns around its ties to Google as well as concerns around scaling the project, AMP adopted an open governance model that is mirrored after the Node.js Foundation and JS Foundation. They adopted this model to scale as well as to give a voice to all constituents of the community, including those who cannot contribute code themselves, such as end-users. 

How will joining the Foundation solve some of the past issues pertaining to governance  AMP has faced and currently faces?

The OpenJS Foundation prides itself on vendor neutrality. Our vested interest resides solely in the ecosystem and the projects that contribute to that ecosystem. The OpenJS Foundation’s Cross Project Council is committed to supporting AMP in addressing these issues and ensure continued progress. During onboarding, AMP will also go through a multi-step process including adopting the OpenJS Foundation Code of Conduct, transferring domains and trademarks and more to graduation from incubation.  AMP has made incredible strides by adopting a new governance model and by joining the OpenJS Foundation, they’ve made their intentions clear-AMP is committed to its vision of “A strong, user-first open web forever.” 

Currently, the AMP runtime is hosted on the same infrastructure as the Google AMP Cache. Doesn’t this present serious issues?

The end goal is to separate the AMP runtime from the Google AMP Cache. The Project is currently in the incubating stage and Project leaders are still determining the next steps. Ideally, hosting and deployment of the AMP runtime to the CDN would fall under the purview of the OpenJS Foundation, much like the foundation is handling other projects CDNs, such as the jQuery CDN.  

Untangling the runtime from the cache is a complex endeavor requiring significant investments of time and effort which would be planned and implemented in collaboration with the foundation and industry stakeholders during and after incubation.

The OpenJS Foundation CPC is committed to having a long-term strategy in place to address this issue by the end of AMP’s incubation. 

How will AMP joining the Foundation address the lack of contributor diversity/inclusion? Currently, only past or current Google employees have commit rights.

AMP has taken key steps to guide how decisions are made in a more open and transparent way. The first step was to adopt a new governance model represented by multiple stakeholders. By joining the Foundation, which is a vendor neutral organization,  AMP will be able to continue down this path. One of the reasons AMP is joining the Foundation is so they can have more of an inclusive contributor base. The Cross Project Council and AMP will be working on this together.