Subject: Re: Paul Fremantle on Open Source Business
From: Rich Bodo <richbodo@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 24 May 2010 21:26:31 -0700

> Much (maybe most) software has no market or community.
> Just bugs and costs.

From a bottom-line perspective, if you fear building a real,
contributing community, for whatever reason, you will stick to your
bugs and support costs, leech as much as you can by standing on the
shoulders of other open source communities, but keep as much as you
can proprietary.

Fear, unfortunately, often springs from a lack of experience and
knowledge at the highest levels of a corporate culture.

Run correctly, the community building efficiency of the open-source
project is unrivaled.  Any business that can benefit by building a
software community must recognize the awesome power of open-source
software projects in this respect.  Far fewer benefit than could.

> To me, it looks like there are more company-sponsored
> open source projects where the alternative was to
> keep it in-house than there are projects where the
> alternative was to license as a proprietary product.

Either type usually accepts that Open Source Software projects are are
software community building mechanisms, first and foremost.  Both
create a feedback loop whose benefits can outlast any company.

Fremantle likely does not accept this, which is seems to happen when
you spend too much time trying to define a free software business.

-Rich

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