Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! ×

Comment Re:So they can't talk about proprietary products?? (Score 1) 587

You do realize that you own the copyright to your code and you can license it however you please to businesses?

Yes. I choose to license it as BSD as my first option. If a company really wants GPL'd code I could do that too, but I find BSD is more business friendly. GPL, to a business, might not be as attractive of an option (or even an option at all) depending on what the project is. If it's extending an existing product, GPL might not be a compatible license.

Basically you're saying that businesses are attracted to your code because they can use it for free without compensating you in anyway.

No, I'm not saying that. If they want me to do work, they will pay me for it. After they, they can do what they want with it, and I can continue to do what I want with it. If they decide they love it and want to resell it, they can. I may not help them anymore, or I may charge them.

Developers who own copyright on valuable code might be better off to dual-license the code. Proprietary/GPL. Give your code a life of its own if it is that valuable to you, while at the same time allowing companies who really do value your code to have access to it under terms that are agreeable to you and to their business aims. This idea was related very well by the guy who said he writes code under the GPL because he wants to make money on his code if someone else wants to benefit from it monetarily.

I never once said I worked for free. You can make just as much money off of BSD code as GPL. If I make a piece of code under BSD, it can have a life of its own. I can choose to release it to the world at the same time as I give it to the client. I can keep it all to myself and use it in other projects without fear of anyone complaining. Depends on the code. The only difference GPL or BSD makes is what happens /after/ the code has been given to a client and what the client can do with it. Under BSD, the client can do /anything/ to it but claim they wrote it (I would still own the copyright). The GPL places additional restrictions on what the client can do, things like releasing the source code, what kinds of licenses are compatible with the code, what kind of code can talk to the GPL'd code, etc

Comment Re:So they can't talk about proprietary products?? (Score 1) 587

Care to back that up with anything?

I am a software developer. I release my code as BSD licensed code. Do you know why? Business are more attracted to it than other code. When I make the case to sell my services and prepackaged code the business knows that they can use my code for whatever they want. As a developer, I'm fine with that. If they want to lock it up and sell it as their own, feel free.

I will keep my own, original branch of code BSD. If I don't like the company that locks it up, its well within my rights to not help them anymore. They can spend their own time taking my work and trying to get it to work with their fork. I make my money off of services anyway.

This assumes they take the code and lock it up without my approval. If I'm contracted to do work for a company I always do the work as BSD licensed. It takes the complications out of things but still gives me access to a large body of code to work from. The stuff I do for them they can resell/lock away without worrying.

Most FOSS projects who will use GPL'd or BSD'd code know and understand the moral implications of locking up code or trying to ignore the license and they will play fair. Yes, there are companies like MS that lock things away and try to keep it under wraps. Know what though? Developers aren't stupid, and if we pick licenses like MIT or BSD, *we* understand what might happen.

End users really don't care. As long as the software works. 99% of end users are never going to modify the code or attempt to redistribute it, so the choice of license becomes moot. This isn't the 1980s where code is being shared amongst companies to make their mainframes work nicer.

Comment Re:So they can't talk about proprietary products?? (Score 3, Insightful) 587

Have you ever read any of Stallman's rants? Stallman is about the freedom of the /software/, not the end user. He wants all software to be free no matter what the end cost for the user actually is. Why do you think he has a problem with licenses like BSD (which is less restrictive than the GPL)? They give more power the user than the software itself to determine how it can be used. If you take the time to actually read the GPL and some of Stallman's writings, you begin to see that he is a religious zealot who is banging the wardrum for software to forever be 100% free and open. If the user doesn't like that, he doesn't care. As a developer, I personally go for projects that are BSD-based. Yes, there is potential that the code could get locked up in a proprietary stack (MS using the BSD network stack, for example), but as long as it was released under BSD it will forever be open to be used as USERS see fit.

Slashdot Top Deals

A list is only as strong as its weakest link. -- Don Knuth