Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
Open-source companies gather to gripe: Cloud giants sell our code as a service (theregister.co.uk)
84 points by zerop 22 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 74 comments

I remember in the 90s IBM started packaging and selling Apache web server. Some of my colleagues thought this was bad. But I went to ApacheCon and they were totally cool with it. There was a good talk, I think by Jim Jajielski, explaining that the purpose of the Apache license is to allow this.

I don’t get these articles because it seems like “duh, that’s the point.” Either the press is stupid, or the companies are acting in bad faith, or the founders didn’t understand OSS, or something because cloud giants are doing nothing wrong. It’s permissible under the license of the named software.

It’s like complaining that Apple and Google sell phones with Unix stuff in there without licensing it. There’s no requirement to pay and no expectation.

Separately weird is that these cloud giants make tons of contributions to open source.

From [1]:

> People throw around the phrase "cognitive dissonance" lot, too loosely probably. But BSD folks who constantly tout the virtues of their license for the things that it allows downstream developers to do and then complain when someone actually exercises those options are the single best real world example of cognitive dissonance that I've ever encountered.

1. https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12618977

Or to put it in meme format.

Copyleft: ∗exists∗

Developers: ptui, MIT all the way

Cloud giants: oh hey, nice code

Developers: wait stahp

this is the cleanest explaination to all that's going on right now.

The harsh truth is that Stallman had seen it right all along, and adviced us on time about what to do.

Yet not all of us listened, many gave in into non-completely-free licenses, and here we are now.

There are a lot of issues with Stallman, but when it comes to software freedom, the guy has been more right, more consistently, than anyone else.

The fact that he advocated for "GPL Vx, or any later version" shows how much foresight he had; he even realized that he probably hadn't foreseen every issue, and included a mechanism for fixing it, and rolling out that patch more or less automatically.

I believe most of the developers who love coding would easily agree with Stallman.

Unfortunately most of the world doesn’t care about code and they have every reason to be that way.

So strategic decisions that push us towards less optimal minima are quite expected.

TL;DR humanity doesn’t care about the pipe dream where everyone knows how to program and change things for themselves. they want finished products that do something.

i generally understood it to go more like this:

BSD-style developer wrote some code to scratch an itch

developer finds company taking the source and tweaking it to make proprietary product

developer and their friends land nice consulting gigs and/or full time jobs

> Separately weird is that these cloud giants make tons of contributions to open source

In some cases a cloud provider makes millions of dollars from a particular open source project and gives nothing back to it. This is the behavior that concerns many. It is also easy to see this as against the spirit of the GPL license, even if projects should switch to AGPL if that is really the case.

It's open source, so you can "pay it forward" by contributing to other open source projects. There is no expectation you contribute back to each project you use.

Maybe not to a particular project but I don’t know any “cloud giants” without big OSS contribution footprints- Amazon, Microsoft, Google all have lots of open source projects and contribs. I don’t care to measure OSS karma but these aren’t people always taking and never giving.

I don’t think this is against the spirit of the GPL license and that’s why there is AGPL. The companies complaining here aren’t GPL anyway. Although I think the opinion that this is against GPL is wrong, I kind of understand it. But it’s loco that it’s against MIT/BSD/ASL.

The whole problem is that Amazon contributes very little, if at all, and frequently creates closed source forks of projects

Amazon contributes a ton [0]. Contribs in most major projects and 1600+ GitHub projects.

Technically their fork of ES is more open than the software they forked.

I’m not sure what is appropriate to consider “very little” but Amazon is a direct contributor and member of the Linux Foundation.

What’s an acceptable level of participation?

[0] https://aws.amazon.com/opensource/

I hadn't considered Amazon in this yet, getting this far I was wondering how much GoDaddy has helped with Wordpress or any of it's plugins and such.. It's bee a while, but last I checked they were doing a lot with it and doing some exclusive things perhaps. I see google has been doing some things with wordpress, but I don't trust them and their contributions concern me a lot - working on plugins and themes is fine, but nudging the core would wordpress is a big thing, Automattic does not listen to the little people who use WP as much as I'd like - seeing heavyweights spending time around the base makes me glad there are forks of WP.

far as I remember another big co using mostly WP and I have not seen much from them for contributing back, some place like squarespace or wiz or similar? OF course I have not been looking specifically for plugins and such created by them, and maybe they have contributed to the core - I would not recognize any of the names from them in the list of contributors with releases I have seen.

If Amazon makes millions selling MongoDB, then aren't they just promoting MongoDB's ecosystem and tool development? The same way it's good for the MySQL (and broader SQL-based DB) ecosystem because new tools will be built around these systems' interfaces.

Sure, they should contribute back, but it's not like they won't be indirectly encouraging others to contribute instead.

Should mom-and-pop computer shops just pirate Windows? After all, they are just promoting Microsoft's ecosystem.

If the license requires contribution (code for GPL, cash for Windows), abide by the license.

Of course, if some companies give away their code using non freedom-preserving licenses and get cannibalized by other larger companies, it's just the free market punishing the ignorant.

> Should mom-and-pop computer shops just pirate Windows? After all, they are just promoting Microsoft's ecosystem.

Of course not, but I'd argue Windows, Photoshop and the like are more popular because of pirates who went on to use the software professionally because, yes, they are promoting the ecosystem. Just think of the number of Windows app developers who developed upon a pirated copy.

This is a horrible article. I don't think the reporter was at the conference. I was on Thursday. There was one talk with this complaint (speaker mentioned in the article) and everything else was just discussing open source business in pragmatic ways without lamenting cloud provider behavior.

I was also there on Thursday and agree. The talks were actually observing that cloud giants do alter the business landscape for open-source, but there are always innovations and possibilities. There were one or two talks on alternative licensing schemes, but the most interesting talks to me were alternative virtuous cycles that are available for supporting open-source while allowing any company to benefit.

Look, this all comes down to a simple thing: If you do Open Source you get Open Source - with all the up- and downsides this may mean for you. Upsides include that you may get community contributions (though that's not a given) and that many people will like your software more because they prefer Open Source. Downsides include that you can't force any user of your software to pay you.

What you can't have is all the upsides without the downsides. Sorry.

In the 80s, Bill Gates and others figured out that hardware was a commodity and most of the value is actually in the software.

It's possible we're seeing a reversal of that trend; like we're seeing the trend of a distributed/decentralized Internet increasingly look like a single big computer run by Cloudflare, Google and a few others; Minitel 2.0.

Right now you have a bunch of companies in the top 10 that see software as a commodity they either give away for free or keep entirely to themselves and do not sell directly: Apple, Alphabet, Facebook and to a degree Amazon (AWS) and even Microsoft.

Apple makes money on Hardware, followed by services (incl the App Store). The software that people actually run they give away (mostly), like macOS, iOS, productivity apps bundled with their OSes, XCode, etc.

Alphabet makes a living mostly off of services (mostly ad brokerage, some cloud stuff too) and gives away a lot of software (such as Android, the Play* apps and other google apps), but rarely sells "old school"/non-subscription software licenses.

Facebook? They do not sell software either, they sell services (ad brokerage). They give away a lot of software, be it their apps you can install (Facebook, Messenger, WhatApp, Instagram) or their open source low-level stuff.

Amazon AWS sells services. The actual software they run is an implementation detail. Even core Amazon moved a lot from selling actual goods as a retailer to being a "marketplace" service platform for other retailers. And with Prime Video and Music, they carved out their place in the subscriptions space too. They also sell some hardware too (Echo, Fire, Kindle), tho mostly not to make a ton of money directly off of it but bolster their other products.

Microsoft wants in on the services thing too, gave away a ton of Win10 licenses to make sure the network effect isn't compromised, and started entering the services/subscriptions market more aggressively with things like Xbox Live (the actual console bordering on being a loss leader) and Office 365, and to a degree the Microsoft Store, tho not particularly successful so far.

Even Oracle desperately wants in on the services/cloud thing for a long time.

Netflix is subscriptions. The software again is an implementation detail.

Samsung sells hardware and to a degree services and subscriptions, but gives away their software.

Adobe is all about subscriptions too.

Red Hat? Subscriptions and services.

Their new parent IBM? Subscriptions, services and hardware.

There is hardly any major player left that actually sells you software like Microsoft did. Those who sell software usually sell you subscriptions not the software itself.

The big difference now is computing power and resources. Everyone can connect to your cluster of machines and you can sell them access for a sweet profit. Back then there was no cloud computing. You just had bare metal to host off of or some shared hosting.

That is totally absurd argument, those cloud or industry giants are not taking any extra privileges, they have explicit permission to use those software. In fact, they are the major adapters who boosts development and contribution to eco-system. They actively motivate their employees to improve the software and publicly contribute who are mostly the major contributors.

Big companies are not bound by these software, they can re-invent their own wheel if needed. They are the one who opensources major new technology without thinking about the profit for example. Anguler.js, React, Hiphop, Mysql etc.

Edit: If you really feel uncomfortable, you can release your software with GNU AGPL, That would be tit-for-tat in your way.

I don't understand where this sentiment is coming from lately? All of a sudden there are people who seem shocked that corporations are profiting off of Open Source software, even though nobody in the community has ever had a problem with it.

I would argue that in many cases, they aren't even making money off of open source directly. Like, people aren't paying Amazon for MongoDB, they're paying someone for the infrastructure necessary to run MongoDB.

They need many millions of lines of open source just to serve a html page... from kernel to Firefox and every bit of hardware between. Take away the open source and they need billions in proprietary software licenses. Take away the open source and Facebook didn't get written with PHP and MySQL. Take away the open source and Amazon has to license Oracle and MSSQL and Windows instead of profiting off MongoDB and PostgreSQL.

Amazon are still actively migrating away from Oracle because it "doesn't scale", what they mean is proprietary software bills per CPU core or server so it scales proportionately to Amazon's own profits. This is just one way FAANG leverages open source to save hundreds of millions of dollars a year in their own operations. Google forked MySQL for their advertising empire instead of licensing MSSQL or Oracle.

I do not believe you could even count the full extent they are dependent on open source without ripping it all out and watching them crumble. What's it worth to FB when every job candidate is highly proficient in React? Without open source culture driving self-education, without open source community in place to embrace React, React needs a 2 - 3 month training course for all newly-hired engineers!

This is true. Amazon needs tons of code just to get to the point of being able to even run Apache or nginx at all, and all that code written by contributors for free. So is your argument that all of those developers, or, at least the Open Source projects should be compensated by Amazon for that effort?

If so, then that suggests that Apache and nginx owe something to Linux, GNU, etc... as well. Sure, either can be run on alternative platforms but, let's be honest; they're usually run on Linux. One might even argue that neither Apache or nginx would exist had Linus not made Linux Open Source.

You bring up React. What's it worth to Facebook for all those engineers proficient in React? Well, React was created by developers who work/worked for Facebook so it seems to me the question is really, what's it worth all of us who might use React? Facebook sponsored it and has easily spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on engineer salaries, equipment for them, office space, etc... By your logic, all the developers not working for Facebook who use React should compensate Facebook for their generosity. See how absurd this starts to become?

This is all a false dichotomy. To suggest these companies owe the open source community is wrong. No open source developer I've ever met (and I've been in this community for over 20 years) has EVER said they expected some kind of compensation. That's not what Open Source is about.

I'm not saying they owe open source. I'm saying they leverage an absolute ton of open source, they are deeply dependent on it. All their communication, infrastructure, software and services and processes are dependent upon open source.

If supporting open source with money is paying it forward, I think React & other endeavors could be called paying it sideways. FAANG get legal tender fit for any purpose, hundreds of billions of dollars in revenue, billions saved not licensing proprietary software, and what proportionately little code they give back is not legal tender for any purpose.

But again I'm not saying they owe open source. I'm saying they could fund it many times over and couldn't exist without it. One day they will pay it forward just by paying fair taxes on their massive fortunes. Today they don't even do that much.

Back in the '90s, people used to say "hackers build FOSS to scratch an itch, not for the money" and "it's both free as in speech and free as in beer" and FOSS as a movement flourished.

Now in the '10s, the johnny-come-latelies and MBAs are thinking "We want the geek cred and goodwill for being open source but OMG look at all the sweet, sweet dollars sloshing around; we want a piece of the pie too". Thus, you get FOSS-wannabe licenses like open core and shared source that try to have it both ways.

To give an idea of the balanced nature of the article, I've pulled a few select quotes: "the peril of cloud-provider parasitism", "open-source code cobblers – Confluent, Elastic, MongoDB, Neo4J, and Redis Labs", "ward off predatory cloud titans".

"Biting the hand that feeds IT" indeed.

The style is typical of The Register, which doesn't claim any sort of neutrality.

I think you can look at FAANG almost as the commercial arm of open source, it's not necessarily bad that they are the best at monetizing open source and increasingly specialized in doing so. It's only bad when they are greedy and keep all of that money, dodge taxes globally and strip benefits from all the employees they can.

This is like the "billionaires can be philanthropists" problem... they overwhelmingly prefer not to so it is vastly less efficient to rely on their philanthropy individually vs a tax collected from all of them.

FAANG have the funds and the expertise monetizing open source to carry the entire open source community many times over, but they will hit a combined trillion dollars in savings before that happens. They will dodge hundreds of billions more in taxes before fueling the open source fire that furthers technology and feeds them recruits, ideas and software.

I've heard it argued that they do pay it forward through their own open source contributions. I think this is more accurately called paying it sideways if anything. They get legal tender fit for any purpose, and what proportionately little code they give back is not legal tender for any purpose.

Its very good this topic is coming up. Fortune 100 companies pay a lot of money for these services, a classic example is Azure Search, which is using ElasticSearch. I wonder how the ElasticSearch community or the founder is benefited. I am curious to know. Also AWS sells a dozen of open source project as services.

There's a really simple solution to the problem of people you don't like using stuff you give them: don't give it to them.

Use AGPL, or add a viral exclusion for any company with a $10B market cap or whatever you want.

I found this interesting when trying to google if MS is contributing patches to ES. https://www.techrepublic.com/article/aws-contributes-to-elas...

It's about the drama around AWS and ES.

I remember, not so few server software devs like that of mongo were categorically against projects switching to AGPL few years ago because of fears of this preventing them selling their stuff in SaaS format.

Well, now their software is being turned into SaaS, except not by them, but by Amazon

I don't see a problem with the current model..

If open source projects change their licensing to force paying for business use and the cloud giants doesn't want to pay, the cloud giant could afford forking the project and make their own version.

This could lead to the original project being unmaintained and the new fork becoming the standard, if that happens and given enough time, the cloud giant can make software patents on the changes they've committed and change the license of that code/features. Making it even harder to create something similar or even something new with the same features.

> I don't see a problem with the current model..

The question is why you are doing OpenSource. If you are a VC funded startup doing OpenSource for marketing (engaging a community ofnusers, producing an environment of tools around your product and sometimes providing a patch) there is an issue if revenue goes to AWS.

If you do OpenSource since you actually need the tool and/or it's not your core business there is little issue if others are using it to provide a service. They might even make your software more robust and stable and better for you. As long as your goals are not misaligned. If they are misaligned they form away and it's like they were never there for you ...

> the cloud giant can make software patents on the changes they've committed and change the license of that code/features

If you choose a license with a patent grant (e.g. Apache), wouldn't this be fairly difficult to pull off? To re-license they'd have to re-write all the original contributions or create a separate project with the 'patent-encumbered' code under a different license without a grant, on which the main project depended.

That's just it, a project can be dual licensed, which is not so uncommon.

A business license + open source license, often called cripple-ware, they make the system quite useless without a GUI or management tool for example.

I might be missing something, but I'm not following the "that's just it". A third party contributor (say AWS) can't take a single-licensed Apache project and decide to dual-license it.

The original developer can dual license and force Amazon to contribute (either in cash, or in code).

2 fundamental flaws here: Being blackmailed is a huge problem.

Anyone can patent changes to your software regardless of the license agreement.

Sometimes I want to pay someone else to handle everything (Upgrades, Security patches, Bugs etc.) While no one stopping me from buying a VM and doing it myself. So what's the problem?

Would it be possible to have licensea based on usage. I believe the image (photography) sites do this, and prices reflect it.

That said, perhaps the industry needs an ethical framework similar to tithing? While I understand these software publishers are upset, no one involved has done anything wrong. Big companies taking advantage of free software can't be a surprise.

You give away your software without too many constraints, and you should expect this.

I've taken a cut at a license that attempts to address monetization while preserving what I see as the underlying strengths of Open Source - reducing the risks of collaboration and adoption:


It requires paying for usage above a level, but is symmetric and permissive and makes future costs predictable, ie prevents the copyright owner from pulling the rug out from underneath you after you've adopted it. The software that I intended this license for never gained traction (so completely that no-one ever told me "i'd try it out if it was open source") so it's untested.

But if a popular software used this license, would you be willing to use it or contribute to it ?

The gist of that license seems to be:

- you can use this software for free at home for personal use

- if you use it at work, you can try it out for free but you have to pay to really use it

- we welcome your code submissions, which will hopefully grow our license revenue

I feel like there are already licenses out there that hit these major points. If I ran across software that used this license, I would recommend they use one of the other popular licenses or just dual-license.

In general, I want licenses to be written and vetted by lawyers.

> In general, I want licenses to be written and vetted by lawyers.

I want them to be so standardized that I don't have to read them. If the license doesn't match something I already know, I'd be reluctant to include the code in any of my projects.

yes, i totally agree - as much as i like the terms of my license, if i came across an interesting software that used the license, i probably wouldn't try it out just because the cost of understanding any new license is too high.

i've more or less given up on the software that I intended the license for, but i mention license here in the hopes that one of these open-core companies will create, vet and popularize a license with similar assurances

thanks for taking a look. yes, having to pay for use at scale is one of the key features (though perhaps the scale should be 1000 cores instead of 10). for your 3rd bullet, one key feature is that the code submission can likewise include a cost, ie it's symmetric

i'm not familiar with any commercial licenses that are close, but i'm interested. do you have any links or suggestions ?

The way I wrote it, it should be more obvious that this isn't an open-source license per se.

What you want a commercial software where you offer exceptions to certain classes of users. Sometimes, this is called dual-licensing. But overall, the controlling license for use of the software is necessarily a proprietary license of some kind.

i chose the name "Paid Use Permissive License" thinking that that would make it clear that it's not Open Source. but i'll see if there's any way that i can make it more obvious

which class of users do you see as receiving exceptions ? one of my goals in writing it was to limit (via the assurances) the degree to which an owner could segment a market, eg it requires published prices, and if they provide low-cost licenses to one user, that user can resell them

I'm not sure who your audience is. If I'm shipping software under a commercial license of some kind (like your license), I want my attorney to vet the license for my jurisdiction(s) before I use it. My attorney would likely not choose this license (because it's not written by an attorney, and does not have features attorneys would expect to see in a software license).

If I'm selling software, I would generally expect it to be licensed under a bespoke license. This doesn't fit that need.

I don’t make many contributions to OSS projects directly, but I wouldn’t make contributions to commercially licensed projects without payment.

How would you manage to compensate contributors?

I am perfectly happy to contribute to open source licenses because I’m trying to improve the community around the project and help users (including billionaires) use it for free. When a commercial entity tries to profit off of software I am not very motivated to contribute.

when contributing code, the contributor can specify a strike price. if the upstream chooses to integrate it, then they're responsible for forwarding appropriate payment. this is one of the key motivations, ie to facilitate two developers to collaborate without prior discussions of financial details

and by the same token, the downstream is able to distribute directly (with or without source), and forward payment to the upstream, ie it's symmetric

if something like this license became widely used, it would make sense to adopt or build infrastructure to facilitate distribution of payments (perhaps licensezero ?)

So coding is a work for hire rather than a royalty stream that seems like a good deal for the company to get lots of cheap labor. This is what’s funny is that I’d rather work for free as long as no one is getting exploited than get a pittance and then let someone profit from my work.

I guess I just like abstractions.

Good luck with your attempt, I think it’s just as likely to be successful as other commercial licenses. I think it’s cool you’ve at least thought of some way to get token payments to external devs.

it's a royalty stream (per core, per year), not a work for hire. the upstream is required to collect that additional price for every license sold and transfer it to the contributor

whether that was a pittance or significant would depend on the price you chose and the popularity of the project

thank you (and the other commenters as well) for taking the time to look at the license and have this conversation with me. it's now obvious to me that several things need to be clarified - people still may not like the license, but at least then they'd be not liking it for the right reasons

i have. "Parity" is an AGPL on steroids and "Prosperity" is trialware. both appear to be intended to force users to seek commercial licenses (and the L0 software facilitates this)

for a user that chooses to go beyond the free terms, neither guarantees any limits on what terms the owner can dictate. my license was intended to address that uncertainty, eg max prices and right of resale.

thanks for taking a look - your comment sparked some thinking, to the effect that my terms might be useful as a fall-back for an AGPL (or Parity) base license which had never occurred to me before

No, I would not use or contribute to such software. To my eyes this is basically commercial software.

it is a commercial license, though it differs from any other commercial license that i'm aware of in that it offers limits on the terms that the owner can dictate, eg price limits and right of resale

are you opposed to using non-open-source software in general, or do you see the assurances that PUPL offers as too weak to be useful ?

I believe in Free Software, but I also believe if software is being used to turn a profit, there should be a cost to that.

In other words, you don't actually believe in free software. I recommend you read the definition of Free software [0].

> The freedom to run the program as you wish, for any purpose (freedom 0).

I think people slap on MIT/Apache license without thinking about it too much, and then get salty when people use that license as intended for profit. This is why proprietary licensing exists, this is why the GNU GPL (copyleft) licenses exist.

You cannot have your cake (free software) and want to eat it too (get paid when someone wants to use it for their profit).

[0]: https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.en.html

It's actually not that simple, the freedoms are conditioned to satisfy them all, not just one. But even then Free Software philosophy is not ideologically pure. In particular gaining competitive advantage is fundamental to players in market economies and inherently requires not letting competitors have something you have. Applying that to free software means that using it for commercial purposes requires doing it in a such way that couples it with something that doesn't respect user freedom and doesn't let anyone to easily run something similar, rendering the whole free software point moot and turning it into mere exploitation. To respect user freedom you need a lot more conditions, at least let any user get all the software coupled with free software and easily run it on its own hardware, i.e. make licenses very viral, force open sourcing all the software coupled with free software or sharing any indirect data dependencies. But here's the thing, this actually removes commercial incentive, because you can never gain competitive advantage with such software, the only way to use it commercially is to pay for an alternative license. So in a way, having your cake and eating it is the only pure free software.

> doesn't respect user freedom and doesn't let anyone to easily run something similar, rendering the whole free software point moot and turning it into mere exploitation.

You are discussing licensed projects made later down the line using an Open Source licensed project. Those projects have no obligation to maintain the same freedoms. None. They only have to respect the terms of the license, such as Apache2's restrictions against branding usage, etc.

1) The freedom to run the program as you wish, for any purpose (freedom 0).

2) The freedom to distribute copies of your modified versions to others (freedom 3). By doing this you can give the whole community a chance to benefit from your changes. Access to the source code is a precondition for this.

By using an Open Source license, anyone can take your code and do whatever they want with it. There is nothing here about "exploitation" or anything arbitrary like that.

The only way to guarantee freedoms down the line is to use a Copyleft license, which some might argue isn't really "free" since it restricts how people can actually use it. The AGPL technically violates freedom 0, for example.

If you don't like people doing whatever they want with your code, don't Open Source it. It's not rocket science. If you're against an oppressive regime using your code to subjugate people, then don't Open Source your code. Getting all up in arms about a company taking your code and running with it demonstrates an understanding of licensing and what open source licenses do. It's not a bug.

Not that any of this would matter anyway since who among us actually has the funds to take people to court and demonstrate a violation of our AGPLv3 Copy-Left licensed intellectual property?

To me this comes off the same way as someone saying, "I believe in DRM free media, but I also believe that if someone tries to send an MP3 to their friend, their computer should stop them."

What do you mean by Free Software if not, 'users can use it for anything'?

I have seen many OSS projects that enforce exactly this. One example that comes to mind, HighCharts.js — free until you make any money.


It's not "free software" or "open source". It's proprietary software that's source available. If that's what you want to write or use, great.

That's not Free Software.

That's like saying you support Free Speech, but only for things you agree with.

In other words it's the complete opposite.

That’s exactly how many people believe today “I believe in free speech, but not if you say something I disagree with.”

They charge mainly for maintenance and support, not just reselling the same code. So what is exactly your case?


Open Core is freaking not Open Source.

The article states many companies have moved AWAY from open source to "source available".

I will proudly die on this hill, to defend true Open Source, we give away our database tech used by 8M users (across non-profits, community ops, and for-profit startups) in production for free (https://github.com/amark/gun).

This complaining has got to stop.

Go freaking license your code as (A)GPL and join Richard Stallman's ideology if you don't like companies using your tech.

Or be brave enough to charge proprietary license, but if you do, stop your "we're Open Source" marketing pretense. Such hypocrites.

Everyone likes benefiting from Open Source until someone runs with their work and makes a profit.

My take from all of this is that people have no idea what they're doing when they license their work as Open Source.

The go-to process currently is to slap on the MIT license, call it a day, and then forget about it until they find out someone is massively profiting from it.

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact