CLA service for Fluid GitHub repos

Justin Obara obara.justin at gmail.com
Tue Apr 3 19:35:47 UTC 2018


Hi everyone,

We’ve been talking about simplifying the process of getting CLAs signed for
some time now. Below I’ll provide a summary of the current process as well
as the two leading CLA service contenders. We’d really appreciate your
feedback and suggestions on which approach to take. Also, if you have any
question or would like further clarification on any part, please let me
know.

Thanks
Justin

Current Process - paper based

   - A contributor is directed to the Fluid Licensing
   <https://wiki.fluidproject.org/display/fluid/Fluid+Licensing#FluidLicensing-ContributorLicenseAgreements>
   wiki page to sign either the CLA or the CCLA
   - The contributor downloads the CLA or CCLA
   - The contributor fills out the CLA or CCLA and scans or faxes it back
   to the IDRC
   - We print off a copy of the CLA or CCLA and physically store it

Current Process - paper based

Our current process has been in place for many years now is essentially
paper based.
Process for a contributor

*A contributor is directed to the Fluid Licensing
<https://wiki.fluidproject.org/display/fluid/Fluid+Licensing#FluidLicensing-ContributorLicenseAgreements>
wiki page to sign either the CLA or the CCLA *The contributor downloads the
CLA or CCLA *The contributor fills out the CLA or CCLA and scans or faxes
it back to the IDRC *We print off a copy of the CLA or CCLA and physically
store it
Pros

   - Official document signed with all of the contributors key details
   filled out
   - physical copy stored

Cons

   - hard to co-ordinate with contributors, especially if they are in
   different timezones and/or they are contributing a single small change
   - hard to determine if a contributor has signed a CLA before
   - our current CLA doesn’t record GitHub ID

CLA Assistant

CLA Assistant <https://cla-assistant.io> is an online service created by
the GitHub team at SAP. It’s an open source project and we would have the
option to run our own instance if we choose.

https://github.com/cla-assistant/cla-assistant
Process to setup

   - One of our repo admins would save a CLA in a Gist on GitHub (I believe
   it can be public or private)
   - One of our repo admins would login to CLA Assistant with their GitHub
   account and link the repos to the CLA

Process for a contributor

You can test by submitting a PR to
https://github.com/jobara/cla-assistant-testRepo

   - contributor submits a PR
   - CLA Assistant checks if the contributor has signed a CLA. It will mark
   the PR to indicate if it needs to be signed or not. (e.g.
   https://github.com/jobara/cla-assistant-testRepo/pull/1#issuecomment–378346476
   )
   - If a CLA hasn’t been signed by the contributor, they are also e-mailed
   a notice that they are required to sign it.
   - The contributor clicks a link from the PR or the e-mail and they are
   shown the CLA and can click a button to sign it using their GitHub
   credentials.

Pros

   - Easy to manage, it is all handled automatically
   - Can import existing contributors with a CSV file
   - Admins can log into the CLA Assistant interface to get a list of all
   of the contributors who have signed the CLA
   - Admins can export the list of contributors

Cons

   - CLA Assistant requires a lot of access to our GitHub repos including
   being able to write to everything

CLAHub

CLAHub <https://www.clahub.com> is an open source project and online
service now maintained
<http://blog.clahub.com/post/141010202340/i-am-excited-to-share-that-the-berkman-center-for>
by the Berkman Centre for Internet and Society at Harvard University
<https://t.umblr.com/redirect?z=https%3A%2F%2Fcyber.law.harvard.edu%2F&t=NTllNjNlNTkyODQyMDZhZmRlZGYwNjQ4NWFhNzcxNGE3ODBhMzg1NSxRMDNRWkJWcw%3D%3D&b=t%3ArMn9v3DhLi-L8O2AL5K94Q&p=http%3A%2F%2Fblog.clahub.com%2Fpost%2F141010202340%2Fi-am-excited-to-share-that-the-berkman-center-for&m=1>.
We should also be able to setup our own instance if need be.

https://github.com/clahub/clahub
Process to setup

   - One of our repo admins would login to CLAHub with their GitHub
   credentials and register each repo
   - The admin would need to fill in the CLA text for each repo that is
   added.
   - The admin can also choose extra fields required to be signed (e-mail,
   name, mailing address, country, phone or Skype, Type “I AGREE”, Type your
   initials, and Corporate Contributor Information)

Process for a contributor

You can test by submitting a PR to https://github.com/jobara/clahub-testRepo

   - contributor submits a PR
   - CLAHub checks if the contributor has signed a CLA. It will mark the PR
   to indicate if it needs to be signed or not. (e.g.
   https://github.com/jobara/clahub-testRepo/pull/1 )
   - The contributor clicks a link from the PR or contributing.md file in
   the repo and they are shown the CLA and can click a button to sign it using
   their GitHub credentials. The contributor must fill in all the extra fields
   we requested.

Pros

   - Easy to manage, it is all handled automatically
   - Admins can log into the CLA Assistant interface to get a list of all
   of the contributors who have signed the CLA
   - Admins can export the list of contributors
   - can provide the link to the CLA to signup from anywhere, e.g. a link
   in the contributing file
   - can require additional information from a contributor like their
   corporate affiliation

Cons

   - CLAHub requires some access to GitHub repos
   - There doesn’t seem to be a way to import contributor data
   - Requirement to sign CLA only shows up as a failed check on the PR. No
   comment is left, and no e-mail sent to the contributor.
   - CLAHub hasn’t been updated for over a year
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