James Governor's Monkchips

Whose Cloud Is It Anyway? Goodbye Ed

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I am not a fan of FUD, but I do like begrudging pragmatism, which is why I enjoyed this Fatal Exception piece from Neil McAllister.

I reported recently on the physical challenges of getting data back from a cloud once you’d stored it there, but here Neil, pointing to a review of cloud computing services, focuses on the issue of supplier agreements, SLAs, or their lack in cloud computing. Its a really important point.

In a cloud computing environment, the vendor holds the strings. If at any time the vendor decides that a customer is in violation of the terms of its service, that customer’s application can go dark now, immediately, and completely unilaterally — SLA be damned.

Paul Downey likes to say The Web is Agreement, but perhaps more importantly for businesses The Web Is Contract.

Perhaps at the next CloudCamp – rumored to be in NY (any word, Geir?) we can run a solid discussion about the contyctual and legal aspects of what Dion Hinchliffe has defined as Cloudsourcing. Perhaps we could even create some standard templates for agreements.

One guy I am absolutely sure would have been all over these supplier agreements, fighting the users’ corner as ever is Ed Foster of gripelog fame. He passed away last weekend, and will be sorely missed. Ed really was an advocate for the user.

photo credit, barto, under CreativeCommons Attribution 2.0 license.


  1. I was just wondering how in your opinion “vendor holds the strings and can shut you down, SLA be damned” fact in the context of cloud computing is any different from absolutely the same fact in the context of regular colo?

    I see how it’s different in cloud computing vs enterprise own datacenter. But that battle hopefully will be resolved the old fashioned way – costs vs benefits.

    Thanks for a great blog!

    – Dmitriy

  2. […] us think. As Tim O’Reilly tweeted, this is an important post. Monkchips‘ observations here, as referenced by both Hugh and Tim, are worth […]

  3. “In a cloud computing environment, the vendor holds the strings”

    And that is why you will always have a corporate datacenter exist. That does not mean that cloud computing will not prevail- infact quite the opposite. check link here

    But what it means is that Fortune 1000 will shrink to fortune 200 – and that Fortune 200 will have their own datacenters.

  4. […] as a result what happens to our customers data. What are supplier agreements; SLAs, worth which is a point James Grovernor raises in another post […]

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