Commons Identity: A Conceptual Model for Designing Brand Identity in Free and Open Source Software Projects

Open Source is a popular term to describe a development and production method based on the free sharing of information. The computer software industry has embraced Open Source practices increasingly since the nineties. Participation in FOSS projects is commonly voluntary and there is a need for specialized knowledge surrounding the production of software. While many programmers join in such Open Source communities, creative professionals (such as Designers) are often missing. One of the reasons for this, is that a creative professional may not know how to design brand identity inside a Free and Open Source Software project.

The hypothesis of this research is that the created conceptual Commons Identity model is a practical tool for designing brand identity in FOSS projects.

Report and Materials


Research Design

The Commons Identity Model

The three key changes made from Wheeler’s brand identity process are:

  1. The incorporation of community votes and peer-review;
  2. Outcomes specific to Free and Open Source Software projects are included as exemplary assets;
  3. An additional preparation phase shows the entry into the community;

Key Findings

Recommendations for further research