[email protected]: Beware Vendors [e.g., Caldera] Playing Open Source Games

“…some vendors like to have it both ways. The want credit for
being good guys and hewing to the pure brotherhood of Open Source,
but they also want the protection or the potential revenue or
something–we’re not sure what it is ourselves–of closed,
proprietary code. They don’t get it. You can’t be both at the same
time. …Caldera bought most of SCO–the Unix and Professional
Services part, leaving the Tarantella part behind–and immediately
started dancing the sorta, kinda,
purer-than-Microsoft-but-dirtier-than-Linux-should-be Open Dance.
It’s not hard to recognize.”

Rules for Fake Open Source and How to Recognize

1. Vendor makes up a new name for his “open source” license and you
realize that the license provisions are somehow different than the
open source rules you’ve learned and love.
2. When asked why he chose not to use a standard Open Source
license like GPL, vendor has too many answers, all conflicting.
3. Vendor’s real reason for using a faux Open Source license is
always self-serving. Hiding behind his responsibility to
others–“we don’t own all the source code”–or to users–“open
source code isn’t as well maintained”–the vendor’s real concern is
almost always about controlling and/or protecting his intellectual
property and getting paid for it.”

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