The Open Siddur is an open source project and anyone can join by helping to code, transcribe, translate, scan books and facsimile editions, and compose new work shared with a free culture license. The project is non-denominational and non-prescriptive. What unites us is our intention to share our work on the Siddur and in Jewish spiritual practice. We come from many different backgrounds but share a passion for making the ingredients of the Siddur freely available.
Aharon Varady wrote up a manifesto for the Open Siddur Project in 2002, however work did not begin in earnest until the project merged with Efraim Feinstein‘s Jewish Liturgy Project in early 2009/mid-5769. Aharon publicly launched the project with the aid of PresenTense (the incubator for Jewish social entrepreneurship) in the summer of 2009. Aharon directs the project acting as its hierophant and chief evangelist. He administers the opensiddur.org website as its editor-in-chief. Efraim leads development of the Open Siddur web application. In 2010, Shmueli Gonzales joined the project as our most dependable transcriber and proofreader. (Make sure to visit Shmueli’s blog, Hardcore Mesorah.) A full list of the good people sharing their time and creativity by contributing to the project are listed here.
Want to help with this project? We need folks to transcribe, translate, scan books and facsimile editions, code, and share work they’ve already written or illustrated using copyleft and free culture licenses. Communication is key in an Internet-based project like ours, so please take our survey and join our discussion list by first introducing yourself. Please don’t be shy. A table listing volunteer opportunities by skill set is here. We also accept financial donations using Razoo through our fiscal sponsor, the Center for Jewish Culture and Creativity, a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit.
You don’t even need to be part of the project in order to take part in it. We are part of the free culture and open source movement. The project is open source so all of the work is free for you to use for your project so long as you adhere to the licenses we are using. In any case, please contact us so that we can help signal boost your project!