Lessons learned… So far…
Posted by Roberto at August 29th, 2012
When looking for commercial services people will often look for and prefer to receive those services from the original author(s). This has been put forward as the primary motivation for the non compliant commercial offerings. While I don’t think that was enough of a reason to not comply with licensing and copyright, I must admit I was going about this in the opposite direction, trying to keep the website www.mayan-edms.com as the Free Open Source portal for Mayan EDMS while keeping my personal commercial endeavor in a separate site without diverting traffic from this one to the other.
People actually care a LOT about Free Open Source software in the DMS space. The complete dominance of this market by commercial products is actually holding back innovation in document management. As in many other aspects of life and technology, users want freedom and want choice, and Mayan EDMS provided both in a market where is very much needed.
Many users will be happy with your choice of license and the terms and conditions of said license, others will want something that allows them to keep their changes, another group just won’t like your license. Again people want freedom and choice, if your don’t give them either one they will get them for themselves. And once again I was failing in this aspect, I was shortsighted to think a single license would be enough to cover the needs of every type of user. A greater number of licensing options will be made available for Mayan EDMS.
There is a lot of confusion and dissertation when it comes to licensing and copyright issues. Unlike most topics of discussion where there are two main sides, opinions about licensing are incredibly varied with every opinion being an almost completely unique point of view. This diversity of opinion is great, but often confused with fragmentation, so great effort must be placed to avoid the discussion to degrade into an argument of License A vs. License B as it tends to happen, a lot.
And lastly, because it is the most important: Those that don’t understand the situation, will criticize you. Those that do not use your software, will criticize you even harder. Those that understand the situation and/or use your software, may voice their opinions, but will support your decisions and trust your judgment, it’s the reason they started putting their faith and efforts in your software in the first place.
PS: I still have a lot of email and comments to go through, if you haven’t received a reply from me you will soon as I answer each message with the attention each deserves.