[CLUG-chat] Exploiting Open Source

Andre Truter linux at trusoft.co.za
Fri Aug 25 13:30:50 SAST 2006

On Fri, 2006-08-25 at 12:57 +0200, Charles Oertel wrote:
> It _is_ Friday
> Has anybody else noticed that there are certain companies that are
> trying to exploit the goodwill and community of open source to their own
> benefit entirely with absolutely no regard for the people they hurt in
> the process?


I am also seeing this.  As Linux and OSS is becoming the "in thing", a
lot of businesses is trying to jump on the bandwagon.  Unfortunately for
all the wrong reasons.

I was recently in a workshop with a client who wants to get on the band
wagon.  They scored points by arranging a workshop and inviting two OSS
people to pick our brains before they just jump in and rape and pillage.

One of the first things we discussed were the whole "Free" thing.  We
stressed the point that they should forget about getting stuff for free,
as that is not what it is all about.  We explained that the advantage is
not less cost, but freedom.  Not being locked in.  The reduced cost is a

But it took a while to get them to understand it.  They look at things
different.  It is all about making money, not about ethics, or
principals for most businesses.

Fortunately my client is willing to seek advice and try to understand
the OSS world.

Now they need to present this to top management, which might be a
different story.

But I agree with Charles, that the business world has mostly lost all
I don't believe that you can say "It is just business" and then go ahead
and screw anything that comes in the way.
If you have that attitude then it is a personality flaw.  You can just
as easy screw your friends or neighbors if you are willing to do it in
your career.

It is a sad state.
Andre Truter | Software Consultant | Registered Linux user #185282
Jabber: andre.truter at gmail.com | http://www.trusoft.co.za

~ Sometimes my mind wanders; other times it leaves completely. ~

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