For Approval: Open Source Software Alliance License
Forrest J. Cavalier III
mibsoft at mibsoftware.com
Fri Sep 26 17:20:14 UTC 2003
Sean Chittenden <sean at chittenden.org> wrote, in part:
> Why does everyone insist that they're protecting my interests by
> likening a piece of BSD code that goes closed source as a bad thing or
> as if it's not what I want? That is precisely what I want people to
> be able to do! That's a smart business for reusing someone else's
> wheel design, kinda like a dated patent.
If you are a small software shop, you sell services. So, what is
the biggest threat to that line of work? Commoditization and customer
lock-in to big-vendor proprietary solutions.
GPL tilts the playing field against that. (I am not "insisting"
you adopt GPL, just explaining one reason why GPL helps the small
shop and IS a rational decision.)
And yes, if you are selling a software library, we can see why
BSD-licensed code is more "sellable" than GPL-licensed code. The
market is better.
But you haven't made your point as to why a "BSD+anti-copyleft" is
more sellable, unless your customer is MicroSoft, or other company
hoping to segment the world of open source software into as
many incompatible islands as possible.
> The GPL is like the
> perpetual patent though, it never expires and becomes usable to other
> businesses. *shudder*
It only took you two paragraphs to break your promise to maintain the
distinction between closed source and commercial. GPL software is
extremely usable in business.
If you can't keep your promise on the distinction, don't post any more.
 Examples abound, but one that comes to mind is an business who would
never dream of releasing the code I write for them under the GPL or any OSI
certified license, but very happily uses GnuPG and the Windows drag-n-drop
program I gave them to send me proprietary data via email. They didn't want to
open up their VPN to me and PKZIP encryption isn't very good. Very cool.
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