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Open Source Law: Supercharging Innovation--Why The State Should Release Its Software as Open Source

May 24, 2004, 20:30 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Brendan Scott)

[ Thanks to Brendan Scott for this link. ]

Open Source Law has released a paper arguing that software developed by the Government should be released as open source except in two identified circumstances. The paper argues why the old model for software development is inappropriate for Government, and that Government should, in preference, release code which it has developed, under an open source licence.

"'Governments should institute an access regime to provide access to software components where the development of those components was funded by the State. Open source licences are the most popular forms of access regimes. An access regime can provide net benefits when applied to most software components. Components which should not be the subject of such an access regime are:

(a) those which should remain confidential; and
(b) those for which a dual licensing approach is inappropriate and which the State has a real intention to commercialise as a product.

The historical absence of access regime structures has led to significant opportunity costs being suffered by the State and its taxpayers...'"

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