Indigenous tech group asks Apache Foundation to change its name

Enlarge / A 2015 photo by Zaheda Bhorat (shared by Rich Bowen) showing many of the original Apache Software Foundation’s creators, with co-founder Jim Jagielski holding aloft the Foundation’s feather logo. The photo is part of a set aiming to recreate a similar image taken around the time of the foundation’s launch. (credit: Rich Bowen/Zaheda Bhorat (CC BY 2.0) )

A group representing Indigenous people in technology is calling on the Apache Software Foundation to change its name, based in part on the foundation’s code of conduct.

Nonprofit group Natives in Tech writes in a blog post that while many organizations have appropriated indigenous culture, “none of them are as large, prestigious, or well-known as The Apache Software Foundation is in software circles.” The organization takes issue with Apache co-creator Brian Behlendorf’s explanation for why he suggested the name and its “Spaghetti Western” tropes, as well as the Foundation’s feather logo and its stated “reverence and appreciation” for a singular, broadly described “Apache” identity.

In the 2020 self-sponsored documentary “Trillions and Trillions Served,” Behlendorf says he sought a name more evocative than “New HTTPd” or the “Cyber-this or Spider-that” nomenclature that was popular at the time:

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