Shortly after word of Chef’s ICE contract appeared on Twitter, according to a report in The Register, former Chef employee Seth Vargo removed a couple of key pieces of open source software from the repository, telling The Register that “software engineers have to operate by some kind of moral compass. ” This move brought down part of Chef’s commercial software and it took them 24 hours to get those services fully restored, according to Chef CTO Corey Scobie.
He said for people who might think it’s a purely economic decision, the money represents a fraction of the company’s more than $50 million annual revenue (according to Crunchbase data), but he says it’s about a long-term business arrangement with the government that transcends individual administration policies. “It’s not about the $100,000, it’s about decisions we’ve made to engage the government.
In a blog post published this morning, Chef CEO Barry Crist defended the decision. “I do not believe that it is appropriate, practical, or within our mission to examine specific government projects with the purpose of selecting which U. S. agencies we should or should not do business.
It’s something that we spent a lot of time on, and I want to represent that there are portions of [our company] that do not agree with this, but I as a leader of the company, along with the executive team, made a decision that we would honor the contracts and those relationships that were formed and work with them over time,” he said.