[rick at linuxmafia.com: Re: compatibility and the OSD]

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Fri Sep 24 17:33:05 UTC 2004

Quoting Chris F Clark (cfc at TheWorld.com):

> Actually, I mistated the problem.  It's not so much that the
> competitor might release a non-open source version, but that they will
> release an incompatible forked open-source version, and not properly
> identify it as incompatible, misleading users into using the
> incompatible version as if it were the "standard" version.

This can happen, _but_ you can prevent (using only the terms of your
copyright licence grant) either incompatible forks or, at your option,
any forks, from using your product name in so doing.  See what Apache
Software Foundation does in this area, for example.

Additionally, your trademark encumbrances can prevent (most) commercial 
uses of the product name in the same trade or business (that you do not

Above and beyond that, if your company loses project leadership to a
wholly open source competitor using a fork of your own code in your own
special area of expertise, maybe this software-selling business just
isn't for you.  ;->  (Reminds me:  Go, GForge!)

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