[kwlug-disc] Wordpress themes must be GPL

unsolicited unsolicited at swiz.ca
Sun Jul 25 13:38:45 EDT 2010

Chris Frey wrote, On 07/25/2010 5:29 AM:
> On Sun, Jul 25, 2010 at 12:28:46AM -0400, unsolicited wrote:
>> But, to Paul's point: How do developers put food on the table?
>> Without having to execute a continuous stream of work?
>> They create something 'wonderful', but, in essence, must (practically 
>> speaking) make it free. How do they gain a 'royalty' (not an annual 
>> license fee, but a bite of pie) every time their work is 'acquired' 
>> (downloaded?)
>> I get your business model, your code (and other activities) enhances 
>> your reputation and makes you the go to guy for a continuous stream of 
>> work.
>> But how do FOSS developers put food on the table for effort expended 
>> without having to continuously execute new streams of work?
> Am I misunderstanding this post, or can someone enlighten me as to why
> things should be any different for computer programmers compared to every
> other kind of work?
> Computers make copying easy.  Trying to build your business model
> against this fact requires a lot of legal effort, which: 1) ends up in
> copyright laws like the DMCA and Bill C-32, 2) ends up attempting to
> make people feel guilty over copying a movie or a song, and 3) ends up
> perpetuating the myth that computer programmers deserve to be rich
> for one brilliant idea.
> If it was normal for developers to put food on the table by executing
> continuous streams of work, I think we'd have a lot less conflict,
> and the business model for developers would be a lot more solid.
>> e.g. Suppose you get sick (and have no income replacement insurance) - 
>> your revenue plummets and you have to live on what you have managed to 
>> save. Or, what about those who don't make enough or have insurance?

Thanks for the post. Well thought and expressed.

> Doesn't this same problem exist for the poor gas attendant, waitress, store
> clerk, fast food employee, etc?  Why should FLOSS developers, or any
> developer, get a free pass?

I think this is partially answered by other posts. e.g. writers.

Through development FLOSS developers produce a work or a product much 
like products we see all around us, be they books or widgets - a 
single idea, copied, is on the shelf. I suspect most every developer 
dreams of 'being one of them.' Retiring to their yacht, etc.

The other occupations you mention would appear to be service 
providers. And we don't like to think of ourselves as not providing a 
uniquely, and extremely, valuable idea - instead of a repeatable 
service that most anyone and their brother can do.

Perhaps this merely relegates to ... There oughta be a way ...

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