[erlang-questions] [OT] Re: GPL vs. whatever [was: Erlang UUID]

Miles Fidelman <>
Sun Mar 18 18:40:50 CET 2012


Daniel Dormont wrote:
> In the simple case, it's pretty straightforward:
>
> BSD - I can make fixes in your code and send them to you, and it's 
> cool because both of us could release our own proprietary version 
> based on those if we want
>
> GPL - I can make fixes in your code and send them to you, and it's 
> cool because neither of us can make our own proprietary version
>
> Except that, as mentioned above, some companies use the "dual-license" 
> approach so that they and they and they alone can produce a 
> proprietary version of their own code. I assume RMS must find this 
> terribly ironic, but it is only the GPL and not BSD that enables this. 
> But in this case, upstream contributions are a problem unless the 
> contributor is required to give permission to the original author to 
> dual-license the code. But if you were a potential contributor to such 
> a project, wouldn't you think twice about it?

Not necessarily.  If the original author is both doing most of the 
development, and being fairly responsible about releasing code as open 
source (i.e., the commercial version has serious value added 
capabilities, rather than the "community version" being a substantially 
crippled version of the commercial product), I certainly don't begrudge 
the developers the ability to generate revenue.  Rather, it benefits me 
for them to be able to support their activities, and for contributions 
and fixes to make their way into the open source version.  On other 
hand, contributing a fix to a crippled version of code, that enhances 
the commercial version - that I'd think twice about.

Miles Fidelman


-- 
In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.
In practice, there is.   .... Yogi Berra





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