Paper Number



Free/libre and open source software (FLOSS) has evolved significantly over the past 20 years and estimates suggest that it accounts for 80-90% of any given piece of modern software. A consequence of this evolution is that many of the assumptions made by FLOSS researchers may be obsolete. This would have major negative implications for research validity and hampers theory generation on FLOSS. This study sought to identify significant obsolete assumptions that persist in FLOSS research. Using Delphi research design with a panel of 20 expert researchers, 21 obsolete assumptions about FLOSS were identified and ranked. We performed a thematic analysis and grouped these obsolete assumptions into six themes: Sampling, Project/Community, Product, Contributor, Evaluation, and Development Process. The Sampling theme was ranked as having the most significant obsolete assumptions although only two assumptions were associated with this theme. The Project/Community theme contained six obsolete assumptions – the most of any theme.



When commenting on articles, please be friendly, welcoming, respectful and abide by the AIS eLibrary Discussion Thread Code of Conduct posted here.