Commented link: Open source licensing and why we're changing Plausible to the AGPL license2020-10-23 #links #licenses #plausible #agpl
Plausible is a competitor for Google Analytics, without the need of exposing your visitors data to some company. And recently they changed their license to AGPL, where they explain why.
But while I admit that I'm not a fan of the tone of "COMPANIES WILL STEAL YOUR CODE!", there is another point one must think: What if someone acts as a gateway of your project to some users? Will they ever know there is someone else working on it? What about improvements? Don't you want people using your product to get the best experience?
Sure, you can ignore these problems and just don't care about what people do. What if a company takes your work and get some money from it? You don't care. Ok. But this gives me the impression that you don't care about what you did. You don't care about your product. If you don't care, why should I? Why should I care about you, in the first place?
(Ok, I know: I'm being mean. Whatever.)
But that's the thing, isn't it? I mean, I wrote some software. I like it. It solves my problem. I expect people to like it too. I just don't want a faceless entity to come around, pick my software, do some changes and lock their users into their system -- something that I, inadvertently, helped build. I locked people into some product that they have no idea they could just move their data out of it.
"Not everybody can program, so who cares?" Yes, not everybody can pick whatever script in Python or Rust or C or Java I wrote and change to make it fit their needs -- heck, think about someone wanting to making a change in Firefox. But everybody knows someone that can program. They can ask that person to change that. They can pay that person to change the program to fit their needs. But, for that, they need to have access to the code. If the faceless entity picks the code, makes changes, lock people and my license doesn't prevent them from doing it so, I'm part of the problem.
No size fits all in software. We can fit a large number of people, but not all. But we can give the tools to let people make it fit their size.