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LinuxPower: Open Source software causing more harm than good

Mar 29, 1999, 11:52 (16 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Christian Schaller)

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"Open Source software, what a beautiful name, it truly captures the essence of free software. It sort of explains itself without needing a free beer, free speech add-on and it feels fresh and exciting. Or so it seemed to me and probably a lot of others when Eric Raymond started the Open Source Initiative."

"Netscape was planning to release the source code of their browser after reading Mr. Raymonds essay, and I felt certain a revolution was underway. Think we would soon be able to cut'n paste all interesting source code from Netscape into our own software projects, we would be able to get it to integrate much better with our desktop environments and other applications. And never again would we be left with a bug ridden binary unable to take action. And this would just be the beginning, this was the sign of a tidal wave which would cause most software to be released under the (L)GPL or a Berkeley style license."

"How wrong and how naive. Soon the Netscape browser was released under the NPL. There was some critical voices, but they drowned in the jubilant cries as we felt we had won our first big victory. How true and how false it would turn out to be."

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