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From Ross Gardler <>
Subject Re: Off topic
Date Tue, 13 Dec 2011 17:25:50 GMT
On 13 December 2011 16:16, Louis Suárez-Potts <> wrote:
> Further points.
> OOo differed from Mozilla, for instance, but resembled Eclipse in that we accepted funds
for development work. At a conference hosted by financial firms where I represented OOo and
there were representatives of Eclipse and Moz., Mike M. and I made similar points: That OOo
can be used as a vehicle for alerting developers and other contributors of paid opportunities
to contribute code.

Who would be paying? Regardless of the answer to this my immediate
(gut) reaction is that it is not really appropriate. If the ASF
doesn't pay for development. If some third party is paying then I
predict this would end in tears. I will try and explain.

Short term, drive by contributions are not what make a project
sustainable. They are useful and we welcome anyone willing to offer
them, but it will not make the project sustainable in and of itself.

What we need is the largest possible number of financially viable
organisations to sprout up around the Apache OO code. We then want to
get out of their way and let them make money and pay developers in any
way they see fit.

> I'd be in favour of re-doing that, but stress that code contributed must comply with
the prevailing license, though I'd also have no problem with dual licensing.

Firstly, we care about building a community not about getting the code
out of people. By focussing on the community we build collaborative
development efforts. We don't compel people to licence their code to
us, we make it worth their while to do so. That is the ecosystem
Apache project strive to build.

Secondly, there is no way to enforce contribution in the way you
suggest. I see unnecessary conflict ahead.

> This and others are actually viable business models, and we showed as much with OOo's
long tenure. The issue that we had to deal with was that the owning companies pretty much
clipped our wings and prevented us from becoming what we could.

Historically that may or may not be true. From where I stand as a
complete newcomer I see the results of the OOo "long tenure" as far
from a glowing success. We have a significant fork, burned out
relationships and a really unhealthy dose of mistrust as a result. All
this seems to be attributable to what you call "the issue that we had
to deal with". The Apache process removes that issue. It focuses on
creating a level playing field.

If you truly believe that matching people to money in this way is a
sensible approach I suggest you set up whatever legal structure you
want to make it happen and prove me wrong (I speak only as myself, not
for the PPMC).

Others who don't have as much time  for, or confidence in, such
efforts might just want to set up a "contractors for hire" page and
make potential paymasters aware of it. Paymasters may also want to
know that there is a foundation wide list for
recruitment purposes across all Apache projects.


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