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Encouraging open source could land you in trouble (technollama.co.uk)
34 points by edw519 on Feb 22, 2010 | hide | past | favorite | 4 comments

I think that the crux of their argument is that if people are 'used' to getting software for free it will erode their perception of software being something that you pay for, and in general, erode people's willingness to pay for other types of intellectual property.

But at it's most basic level this argument boils down to, "if you use company X's product, then you might not see any value in company Y's product; therefore company X's product should be banned because it is limiting the marketplace." In this case, they are painting things with a broader stroke by seemingly bringing up some sort of 'Open Source' vs 'Closed Source' argument, but the main point still stands. They are saying that because Open Source takes away profits from Closed Source companies that it must be eliminated, which is ludicrous.

They may put on a veneer, of claiming that they just want a level playing field, but it seems to me that they just don't want anyone inside of the government to have a preference against them (or be a champion for their competitors). Why? Not because of some sort of free-market-lets-join-hands-and-sing Libertarian nonsense. They feel that they can win government contracts when there is no one speaking out for Open Source because then their sales people don't have any competition when marketing their products to the government.

Not using open source as a government entity should get you in to trouble. Using open source should get you promoted. But since there is no 'open source' graft fund to grease the palms the open source movement within governments is for the most part still limited to those countries that simply can't pay.

Before now, I hadn't realized that some people believe that loading a copyrighted work into RAM should be legally considered to be a reproduction of said work...

Not just "some people" but law makers and lawyers.

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