why is taking open-source code closed expensive?

Danese Cooper danese at gmail.com
Sat Jul 7 21:32:23 UTC 2007

> the worst that can happen is that some company would
> take the software, modify it, close the source and
> sell it as a product.

Okay, you're answer puts you on the "Copyleft" side of things.  There  
is another school of thought in Open Source (which I'll call Copy  
Center after McKusick) that says the best thing that can happen is  
that people actually USE your code and so proprietizing is both  
allowed and encouraged.  IBM's WebSphere project is an example (it's  
Apache webserver, plus some extra stuff...and it costs a lot of  
dough).  This strategy has allowed Apache to achieve an installed  
base of around 65% of the total internet, so it does have some  
merit.  Depends on what your feelings about your project are,  
ultimately.  You are completely within your rights as a developer to  
choose to license in such a way that proprietization isn't legal for  
your code.

> i would want to use a license that can be proved to be
> valid in court and can save my open source product.

Don't we all want this?  Unless you're ready to shell out for the  
lawsuit, could take some time.  GPLv2 has been upheld in some courts  
in Germany.  GPLv3 is too new to have been proven, but it was written  
with more documented intent than any license in software history so  
if we do ever get to a lawsuit there's plenty of clarity about what  
the language means.

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