According to a Thursday announcement the Linux Foundation has added 15 new silver members. To be sure, these aren't top tier platinum members who pay $500,000 in yearly dues, or gold members who shell out $100,000. Silver members pay according to the number of employees, topping out at $20,000. It's also not a very exclusive club. At last count, there were over 115 silver members. Compare that with 12 platinum members and 14 gold members.

Silver members might not pay a lot, but they also don't get much bang for their bucks. While each and every platinum member gets a seat on the Linux Foundation board, the 115 plus silver members all share a single board member between them. That's the biggest perk, 1/115th of a board member. Other than that, it's basically bragging rights.

So why would a company shell out up to twenty grand for a silver membership? Some may come in simply to support Linux and open source, I suppose, but most probably get there by way of being a member in a Linux Foundation project. And if they enter by that route, they might not have to pay anything at all.

For example, according to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation's website, the price of all memberships in that Linux Foundation project includes a silver membership in the Linux Foundation. I count 116 CNCF members at the silver level or above. Get the picture?

This includes major players such as Red Hat, which is a platinum member of CNCF and a silver member of the Linux Foundation. In other words, Red Hat doesn't need to be paying a dime for its Linux Foundation silver membership; it's included in the $370,000 dues it pays to CNCF.

Actually, a full third of the 15 new members are also members of CNCF. That's also not surprising. CNCF's biggest project is Kubernetes, which has pretty much become the standard for container orchestration, and containers seem to be eating the software that's eating the world.

It's all OK. No matter how they made the list, they're still supporting Linux and open source.

The newcomers to the foundation's silver list are mostly pure play tech companies. Interestingly, some are open source companies that have been around for a while. Makes you wonder why they're just getting around to joining the Linux Foundation or one of it's projects, doesn't it? Better late than never, as the saying goes.

New members include:

99Cloud: The largest OpenStack community in China and China's largest professional OpenStack training institution.

AIG Technologies: A developer and manufacturer of personal care, cosmetic, OTC (over-the-counter) and pharmaceutical topical drug products.

Aqua Security: Security company focused on container-based applications from development to production.

Dynamic Coin: An open sourced, fully decentralized, peer-to-peer (P2P) currency.

Dynatrace: A digital performance management provider offering AI-powered, full stack, automated monitoring.

Fiberhome Technologies Group: A leading equipment vendor and global solution provider the field of information technology and telecommunications.

GameCredits: A universal currency and virtual wallet for 2.6 billion gamers worldwide.

Gigaspaces: Provides a leading in-memory computing platform for fast data analytics and extreme transaction processing.

Huizhou Desay SV Automotive: Research, development and manufacturing of in-vehicle infotainment systems, climate control, driver information display systems, automotive display modules/systems, body control modules and advanced driver assistance systems.

iconectiv: Provides solutions for the interconnection of networks, devices, and applications.

LogDNA: A cloud-based log management system that allows engineering and DevOps to aggregate all system and application logs into a single platform.

NGINX: A web server that is also used as a reverse proxy, load balancer and HTTP cache.

Openet: A company that provides software solutions and consulting services primarily to telecoms.

The Patientory Foundation: Promotes and develops new technologies and applications, especially in the fields of new open and decentralized software architectures.

Trend Micro: is a leader in hybrid cloud, endpoint, and network security solutions.

Surprising to me is the inclusion of two cryptocurrencies on the list. Not so surprising is Game Credits, as it has a built-in market, and also because it's also a member of the blockchain focused Hyperledger project. The open source cryptocurrency startup Dynamic Coin is a surprise, however. Especially since it didn't come in through Hyperledger's door.