Over this Thanksgiving holiday, OpenCUNY resized its server, increasing our space on our LiquidWeb Virtual Private Server from 2 to 4 gigabytes. We previously doubled our server size, from 1 to 2 gigabytes, in the Summer of 2013 to meet increasing demand due to more participants, more websites & media, more traffic, and more mapped domains (which puts additional strain on the server). From the Summer of 2013 to now, the number of hosted mapped domains has doubled, making this recent increase especially vital.
In the past few years, OpenCUNY has been growing at a steady pace, gaining new participants and websites at rates of 25-50% over the course of any given academic year. In this past academic year, we celebrated OpenCUNY’s 5th birthday, looking back to and honoring OpenCUNY’s first days when Gregory Donovan germinated the idea in Summer of 2008 and got the project formally endorsed and instituted as an affiliate of the Doctoral Students’ Council in Spring of 2009. Since that time, OpenCUNY has grown not only virtually, but also as an institution. In Spring of 2011, OpenCUNY had added a Coordinator of Education and Support and added a third position, Coordinator of Action and Development, in Summer of 2013.
We’re in a different moment from 2008 when The Graduate Center, CUNY, had no easy means for students and faculty to create digital presences, but the work of OpenCUNY is just as important today. Students’ right to remain silent without the assumption of guilt are being challenged by CUNY’s Board of Trustees, physical student-based facilities are imperiled (cf. City College’s closure of the Morales-Shakur Center), and the student-mobilizing that has been happening in the wake of the non-indictments in the Michael Brown and Eric Garner cases have highlighted the need to speak out, to change the system. OpenCUNY provides that digital space for all voices to be heard.
OpenCUNY exists as an independently-run, student-based and student-focused WordPress platform, which supports free and open-source digital media and advocates on behalf of students’ interest within the CUNY-wide technological environment. Because OpenCUNY is not hosted on CUNY servers, it is not subject to the CUNY Policy on Acceptable Use of Computer Resources, which allows us to protect students’ voices and operate more autonomously.
Looking back, we are happy to see that OpenCUNY has (and will continue to) provide a vital service to the students of The Graduate Center and we are looking forward to seeing what the future has in store. Want to help us look toward the future? Please take the OpenCUNY Survey.