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SubjectRe: Gauntlet Set NOW!
On Sat, 4 Jan 2003, Richard Stallman wrote:

> I would rather look for constructive alternatives than just criticize.
> In such a situation, I would look for a way to make the program free.

> If there is no easy way to make the same program free, there may be a
> harder way.

There is of course the business model used by the ghostscript
people, used by tytso when he made resize2fs and also used by
Andre Hedrick:

1) write the software, sell it for a profit for some period
of time (eg. 18 months)

2) after that, release the program and its source code

To the copyright holder, this has all the benefits of a strictly
copyrighted work, ie. funding. It also has the additional benefit
of having free software out there that lags close enough to your
commercial program that a competitor has no chance of entering
the market with a non-free product of mediocre quality.

To the free software community, it has the benefits of free
software becoming available at a higher speed than what would
have happened without any funding at all.

Of course, the copyright holder has to choose a license like the
GPL when releasing the software as open source, since otherwise
the competitors would be able to use the older version as a basis
to develop their commercial product from.

To me, this looks like a win/win situation and I hope more
companies will choose this business model.


Bravely reimplemented by the knights who say "NIH".
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