That does not make sense, if it's open source, with a GNU license for example, everybody should be allowed to see the code, and depending on the license provided, use or not the code in another project.
Your position is absolutely understandable, that's not the problem, just don't call it "open source".
You can maybe call it "open source for our customer and partners".
Usually in trading, those who know don't talk, and those who talk don't know. (Al Brooks)
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The following user says Thank You to sam028 for this post:
Everyone agrees that the most fundamental definition of "open source" implies open redistribution and access. There can be restrictive license terms, sure. But if anyone, like me, can't download your source code (not that I want to) or has to request for access to it, then it's simply not open source.
You're making a reasonable demand. I think you've made a wise choice to turn it into proprietary software.
What we're expressing is that, since you've already restricted access to it, what remains is that you give it the appropriate name: "proprietary software". Sure, you can call it an infinite other names that do not describe what it is, such as "The Holy Grail", "Free as Beer", "Perpetual Money-Making Machine", "open source", "One Ring That Rules Them All" or whatever, but we're just pointing out that it's an inappropriate name.
Perhaps this is the reason why people are afraid of working with you:
Not even Apple or Oracle expect their users to "give in return" for the use of their proprietary software - I mean of course, their users have to pay in the very first place, but there's nothing expected of them after that. Can you imagine if you walk in an Apple store to buy OS X Kitty Cat and the first thing the salesperson tells you is that you have to sign this contract to "give Apple something in return that is at least half as valuable"? (What, your wife and kids?) How do you expect someone to make the business decision to invest 2, 3 years of their future operations using your platform, when it comes with (1) the ambiguous requirement that they give you something in return over time, (2) you have a history of taking away access from people without informing them?
I'm not badmouthing your platform - I'm not a vendor, and I have no interest in reading or using any of your code (a member of this board just sent me his code via email recently and I told him outright, I'm not going to read any of it if it works) or its derivatives, but I like the design as described on your webpage, and would hate to see you lose out to large software vendors. I'm just giving you sensible business advice.
The following user says Thank You to artemiso for this post:
thanks for your comments - I think you are wrong - hehe - :-)
Open Source doesn't mean it has to be given away for free in monetary terms.
AQ is fully compliant Open Source software. If you buy the license, you get the source code and can build and sell things with it, given you distribute it under the same Open Source license.
(Did I tell you that I love Open Source software?)
Check out the following links (damn, can't post links yet) .... Google for >>open source sell<< and just review the first three links ...
If you read the GPL (THE open source license per se), you'll find that you Open Source means that you receive a copy of the source code along an actual product - the source code is included so to say. THAT's the meaning of Open Source, not that you get something for free in monetary terms.
The point is, we are happy and we love to work with users, but these users have to contribute something. Not just drain energy and knowledge.
Actually, we are thinking about setting up the whole project a little bit different. We have a small circle together and are happy so far ....
"Analysis of Licenses and Their Open Source Compliance
To understand the Open Source Definition, we need to look at some common licensing practices as they relate to Open Source.
A common misconception is that much free software is public-domain. This happens simply because the idea of free software or Open Source is confusing to many people, and they mistakenly describe these programs as public-domain because that's the closest concept that they understand. The programs, however, are clearly copyrighted and covered by a license, just a license that gives people more rights than they are used to. "
This is clearly not open source, since there is no open access to the source code.
I don't understand why you insist on claiming that it is open source when you have a commercial license. There are many software development companies who do exactly what you're doing, give access to the source only to their customers, and they call it "royalty free re-distribution rights" but I've never seen any of them insisting that they are open source. Now if you give open access to the source code, but offer additional support or redistribution rights to users who wish to pay for it, then no one's going to argue that it's not open source. The definition is very, very clear.
Think about your user base - people who would want to work on the source code are the ones who would most benefit from it - so probably themselves experienced developers or multi-user organizations, who are keenly aware of the bounds of "open source" and phobic to proprietary software. Such insistence would only come across to them as a dishonest practice.
Well, as said, I think it's time to rethink your understanding of Open Source. That has nothing to do with dishonest. It has to do with providing source code along a binary version. When a user purchases the binary version, he will get the source code with it. He also receives the right to make derivative work as long as this new binary version also includes the source code and he may sell this derivative work.
That's what OS says. It doesn't say that source code has to be available for free to everyone.
As a software manufacturer you may permit access to source code to the purchasers of your software only - all within the bounds of OS.
Do you slowly see the difference between proprietary software without source code and which does not grant you a redistribution right and Open Source software?
Quoting the OSI page:
1) "The license shall not restrict any party from selling [..] the software"
2) "The program must include source code, and must allow distribution in source code as well as compiled form"
3) "The license must allow modifications and derived work"
You purchase the software, you get the source code, you get the right to derive work, you may sell the work, your work must again use the same license. That's OS.
Come on, you have to admit I am right.
Last edited by ustaudinger; March 30th, 2013 at 07:36 PM.
Reason: small addition
Its not about how you or I define Open Source software. The Free Software Foundation and Open Source Initiative have approved specific open source software licenses. The general public refers to Open Source software as those using an FSF or OSI approved license.
Either you are using an FSF or OSI approved license or you are using an Open Source "compatible" license or not. Otherwise this is just a commercial product with a license allowing for modification or redistribution source code included.
If your software can be forked legally then most likely you include an Open Source license or Open Source compatible license. If you do not permit forking then I wouldn't call it open source, but modifiable source.
In agreement with @ustaudinger, open source does not mean the source code is widely available on demand. The producer is allowed to only provide the source code to the customers/end users of the software.
Last edited by MrYou; March 30th, 2013 at 09:06 PM.
I'm not surprised from your previous actions that you now lift the words completely out of context to justify your agenda. The subheading clearly implied that those conditions applied to redistribution. You might as well have quoted: "The license[...] require[s]... selling.... and... must... place restrictions." What about: "there must be a well-publicized means of obtaining the source code for no more than a reasonable reproduction cost"?
You began with claims of an "open core" and asked for contributors. Then with no due notice, changed the way it was distributed in less than 3 months. And now probed, point out that potential contributors must now contact you to become a private developer, and that they must give you something in return, and that you have to pay for access - which makes you a vendor, and that a covert advertisement. I don't have a problem with this because it's entirely your choice how to do business and I'm fine with vendor advertisements, but I am advising that it doesn't put you in a good light because anyone can imagine how 'jipped' one would feel if he had contributed to your project under the impression that was initially advertised 3 months ago.
Both sam028 and I have pointed out that the problem lies with the access, not whether or not you are selling it. I've already stated in my second post that I well know that an open source redistribution may be sold, but this is an entirely different matter from false advertisement - how you're concealing several elements of what you had intended to do, and how you are misleading people about the nature of the deal.
You can choose to be stubborn about your own interpretation of 'open source', and I shall not change your mind about it - you're the one who has to make a living from selling the software, not me.