Starting from the phpList About page you will be able to easily tell this is a software that can be used for various purposes and by various types of organizations. Although it was initially created upon request from the London National Theatre, very quickly it became very popular thanks to its open source license that allowed community contributions.
The adoption of free and open source technologies has generated a large discussion among public sector agents as several issues were raised.
First things first: Taxes are used to what is most needed and not on licenses for software that comes from a large corporation. The adoption of open source software can reduce governmental costs by millions of dollars annually depending on the agency and country. Additionally, software used once in a public agency can be modified and reused to another. Even when an agency is willing to develop itself a piece of software they need, the use of open source software can save time.
Even when money and time are not a problem, data privacy always is one. European governmental agencies have been battling with “Big Tech” harder than anyone else because citizens’ data ownership and data processing are have always been a very important and sensitive issue. Open source software guarantees that no third-party services have access to this data and therefore everything stays indoors!
Ever heard of the term “Interoperability”? Ab initio most open source software promises to offer interoperability, meaning the ability that this software will be able to operate alongside with other systems and software. Also, the result of the data processing should be able to be used by several other systems in the future. Open source software sets “Open Standards” for data formats and procedures. This is extremely important because whatever function a software operates, should not do it in a way that creates a barrier for future use or processing by other services or vendors. This is a common practice by most Big Tech companies who use their own licenced formats that do not allow process outside of any other system other than them owned by the same company. Inevitably this creates the need for further license purchases.
Open source is cutting edge technology. Development of open source products is a task performed by many different people from across the globe and with different skills. Therefore, the development is faster and results in a secure software because there are more people to observe the behaviour of the software. Community testing is one of the key elements that makes open source more trustworthy. Community testing of Beta releases helps identify faster functionality and security flaws. Also, suggestions from people in a certain condition and environment help create new features and tweak the old ones.
For all the reasons above phpList has been trusted by several governmental and educational institutions. Ministries and universities trust phpList for 100% open source software which means that the admin is the one who has access on the subscribers’ data.