What Vendors Really Mean by 'Open Source'
Dec 19, 2008, 18:04 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Mark Taylor)
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"At open-source speaking events, Microsoft representatives
generally try to establish a world view sympathetic to their own by
talking as if the accepted distinction in the open-source arena is
between commercial and non-commercial. That definition is
inaccurate and its intent is to damage.
"The true distinction is between proprietary and
non-proprietary. The false distinction between commercial and
non-commercial is designed to imply that only proprietary software
is acceptable commercially -- that is, companies should keep buying
the proprietary stuff and leave the non-proprietary to
"It's a clever sleight of hand but, fortunately, invalid. The
true distinction is between proprietary and non-proprietary, and
here non-proprietary can be just as commercial as proprietary -- in
fact, in classical free-market terms, even more so."