A blog for the enterprise open source community
Open source should avoid taking sidesMatthew Aslett, July 18, 2008 @ 8:45 am ET
Dana Blankenhorn states that “Open source should support Apple over Psystar”. I have to disagree. My perspective is not based on his views on contracts and licenses (although you can read plenty about that in the talkback section) but on a couple of other issues:
1/ “Open source” is not a single homogenised being or movement.
2/ Even if it was, it should avoid getting involved in spats between vendors.
While I have no insight into the rights and wrongs of these companies’ claims my view would be that the open source community (if you believe in such a thing) shouldn’t jump to conclusions. Open source does not have some sort of divine right to the truth. Backing the wrong horse could be very costly for the image of open source as a whole.
What about the SCO case? Well, there are exceptions, and in my view the SCO case was an unprecedented attack on Linux and open source wrapped in a legal case against IBM, and the various open source constituents were right to leap to defend themselves.
But that doesn’t mean “open source” is right on everything. Sometimes legal issues are better left to the experts.
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