Incidents have surfaced in the past few months that point to the need for unified guidelines or what some would call a cloud computing bill of rights. The latter is a bit too nationalistic for me and does not reflect the international scope of the cloud. But we are not here to quibble over terms. The issues are enough to push this conversation forward.
Phil Wainwright is arguably the dean of the Software as a Service (SaaS) world. He has been following the cloud computing world since 1998. On Monday he wrote a post pointing to the Amazon Web Services (AWS) shut down of the WikiLeaks service.
As well, he points to several recent discussions on the topic which are worth noting:
- Salesforce.com Chief Scientist JP Rangaswam has defined a set of ten guiding principles for cloud computing.
- Ray Wang has written a Customer Bill of Rights for Software-as-a-Service.
- RightNow is promoting better contract terms for customers.
- Initiatives are under way at EuroCloud where Wainright is a vice president.
The WikilLeaks case is the most concerning of examples of what can happen to a customer. But outlying examples such as this do point to the power held by service providers. Customers need more rights to give then confidence that their business won't get shut down without any notice.
What do you think?