Subject: Re: advice sought
From: Tom Lord <>
Date: Wed, 31 Jul 2002 10:59:23 -0700 (PDT)

	> BTW, once you have the substantial cash flow, please don't forget to
	> start the Tom Lord Foundation which gives half of it away 

Do you mean an NPO?

People often suggest that, arguing that "publicly licensed" implies
that NPO privileges should apply.

I'm not so sure.  It seems plainly abusive, from my perspective, at
least for efforts to produce specialized, business-oriented software
being designed and built to fit hand-in-glove with various business
models.  But I'm no lawyer -- that's just the conclusion I reached
after reading up on how to make an NPO: one should be *really*
careful about applying the NPO mechanism.

Mostly people suggest NPOs for tax efficiency reasons, but then isn't
that what the R&D credit is really for?

As I might have mentioned, I think a little fleet of (usually)
independent, commercial Free Software R&D labs is the way to go.

Maybe you don't mean an NPO.  Maybe you're emphasizing the "give" part
-- i.e., suggesting some other arrangement than a standard employment
agreement.  Well, I'm all for that, though there's plenty of details
to get right and experimentation to do to find winning alternatives.
Small steps, seems like the right tactic here....

	> to guys just like you, but who didn't decide to get a job
	> when they could just get money from the Tom Lord Foundation.

Ok -- _this_ is an example of implicit ...hmm.... "___-ism" (none of
the -ism words, like classism, are really precise).

As flames go -- it's ok (I think you've done better).  But the premise
of the flame is that you know a lot more about the rather twisted
career path that brought me to this point.   Unless you are intending
to parody that premise, you seem to have adopted it....