It has never been easier to get access to advanced tools, to integrate third-party tools with your applications to enhance the user experience, and to help you gather vital information. Unfortunately, this ease-of-use has come largely at the cost of your control over your and your users' data.
Not only can you not know what the data, that is generated by users' interaction with your company, is used for; several services are known to base their business model directly on collecting information on your users, aggregating it, building profiles, and using it to market content more directly to them.
Most distressingly, data that crosses the border to the US can be read by the US government in some circumstances, posing a significant privacy threat to your user.
Your application is a liability for your users.
It doesn't have to be this way. We're here to help.
We depend heavily on third party applications because it is easy. Any potential replacement for existing services must be just as easy to integrate with and use.
The YOURdata initiative strives to build open source alternatives to established and popular services used by many websites, and to build them in such a way that you can spin up your own production-ready instance and integrate with it, as quickly as you would sign up for and integrate with the existing services.
Here are a few guiding principles for the projects we are building:
With these rules in mind, we should be able to provide something much like your favourite open source projects, but at a slightly higher level of abstraction: entire applications that can work as services in your software system, fully and adequately encapsulating functionality. You won't have to reinvent the same system for different contexts.
Get involved by getting in touch.
The following projects are part of the YOURdata initiative.
Projects start as concepts, then move into alpha, beta, and finally release stages.
Build mailing lists for topics, manage lists, send mails in your well-defined templates, writing them in markdown.
An alternative to Mailchimp, etc.
Allow comments for topics, set up rules for moderation, and manage them.
Alternative to Disqus, etc.
Collect usage data of your application without tracking users (user-identifiable info) or leaking the data to companies that use it for profiling of users.
Alternative to Google Analytics. Let's be honest, there aren't really any other options.