Responds to community feedback with internal review of the Salesforce1 Hackathon
Review determines that winning teams met eligibility requirements, but that final round judges may not have been provided with enough information to evaluate use of pre-existing code
Salesforce.com will now award top two developer teams with grand prize of $1 million each
More than 4,500 developers registered to compete for the biggest single hackathon prize ever, with more than 150 submitted apps—all built on the Salesforce1 Platform
SAN FRANCISCO--Dec. 2, 2013--Salesforce.com (NYSE: CRM), the world’s #1 CRM platform, today announced that two teams won the Salesforce1 Hackathon, which concluded on Nov. 21, 2013, at Dreamforce, the world’s largest software conference. After completing an internal review of the competition, salesforce.com determined that the winning teams met eligibility requirements, but that final round judges may not have been provided with enough information to evaluate final round entrants’ use of pre-existing code contained in their app entries. As a result, salesforce.com has awarded the top two developer teams with the grand prize of $1 million each.
More than 4,500 developers registered to compete for the biggest single hackathon prize ever, with more than 150 submitted apps—all built on the Salesforce1 Platform. In addition, the Dreamforce DevZone attracted more than 20,000 attendees who created more than 2,000 social, mobile and connected apps on the Salesforce1 Platform.
● “Thousands of developers joined our first ever Salesforce1 Hackathon and we take their feedback seriously. We want to demonstrate the power of the Salesforce1 Platform with fair, open, and transparent hackathons that show the future of apps," said Alex Dayon, president, Applications and Platform, salesforce.com. "The developer community has been very active in sharing its expectation to make this competitive process better. We look forward to even more innovation from our next Salesforce1 Hackathon, which we are planning now.”
● “After reviewing the hackathon rules and judging process, we have determined that both of our first prize winners met our eligibility requirements. We have also determined that we did not do a good enough job of communicating with the entrants about use of pre-existing code, which was allowable under certain circumstances, and that we weren’t clear enough with the final round judges about the use of pre-existing code,” said Burke Norton, chief legal officer, salesforce.com. “As salesforce.com is unable to determine whether or not this would have changed the outcome of the final round of judging, the company has concluded that the appropriate outcome is to declare a tie and award each of our two top winners the first place prize of $1 million.”
Key Findings from Internal Review of the Salesforce1 Hackathon
The salesforce.com internal audit team conducted a review of the eligibility requirements and judging process used in the Salesforce1 Hackathon. They concluded that the winning team, Upshot, met the hackathon’s eligibility requirements, and that the app they submitted adhered to the rules of the hackathon. While one of Upshot’s team members was formerly employed by salesforce.com, the rules only prohibited participation by former employees of salesforce.com if they left the company after August 31, 2013, which is after the departure of the Upshot team member from salesforce.com.
In addition, while the Upshot mobile app used pre-existing code, this did not violate the hackathon rules. Use of pre-existing code was allowable as long as the code did not comprise the majority of the app and did not violate any third party’s rights. The internal audit team’s review determined that Upshot’s mobile app was created during the hackathon and met these criteria. The review also determined that all eligible submissions were reviewed by the judges.
Salesforce.com also reviewed a claim that the entrants from Healthcare.love were ineligible to participate in the Salesforce1 Hackathon because they are employed by a company in which salesforce.com holds a small equity stake. The review determined that the entrants were eligible to participate because such investment is immaterial and salesforce.com has no ability to control the referenced company. As a result, it is not a "salesforce.com-related" entity under the rules.
During the initial two rounds of the competition, all judges were salesforce.com employees who were familiar with the Salesforce1 Platform and with the rules of the hackathon. During the final round of the competition, in an effort to ensure impartiality, five out of six judges were not salesforce.com employees. The internal audit team concluded that salesforce.com did not adequately equip these judges with enough information to ensure that the scores for the “innovation” criteria took into account use of pre-existing code.
Thousands Compete in Salesforce1 Hackathon
The Salesforce1 Hackathon was hosted at Dreamforce, the world’s largest software conference, where more than 4,500 developers registered to build next generation mobile apps on the Salesforce1 Platform.
Over the course of four weeks, from Oct. 25 to Nov. 19, 2013, more than 150 teams created next generation mobile apps on the Salesforce1 Platform. Submissions ranged across industries and business processes, and included a mobile healthcare service, a connected devices app, a recruiting app, and a voice recognition natural language processing analytics app.
To see these innovative apps, please visit: http://salesforce1million.challengepost.com/
● Click here to read about our Update on Salesforce1 Hackathon Feedback & Review http://blogs.developerforce.com/developer-relations/2013/12/update-on-salesforce1-hackathon-feedback-review.html
● Click here to check out the innovative apps from the Salesforce1 Hackathon: http://salesforce1million.challengepost.com/
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