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Open-Source Projects Are Getting Ripped On Amazon

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  • #31
    It makes a Software more popular, so its good, but making transparent from which source you forked your project should be done? I donīt know the terms from gpl on this point.

    But if lets say photo maker is very successfull. Companys see that and maybe there dont work only stupid people and they see that its a nearly 1:1 copy from the less popular original projekt. So they maybe try to make a own copy and ask the developer for 2-3 features to add because they are the most competent on that job. So they get maybe even money back form such deal. But opensource is at least by this projects not the biggest point, the biggest motivator to release software under such lisense is maybe that you want that other people can have something from your work, and maybe so that you can share work with others, on projects that are to big to do with one or very few people. So maybe somebody who uses that software finds the gpl-txt or sourcecode on the cd, and when they want some small change on the programm they just do it and then releasing their version of the programm, and the orignal project or somebody else can push from that again.

    or they "share it with others because it is illigal" (they think it is ^^).

    Like the potatos here in europe, the farmers first did not want to use it, but then a king told some guards to strongly watch over a small field but do some sleeping or looking away then the farmers stole it and culturated it.

    Comment


    • #32
      Sorry some mistakes (its late here ^^):

      wrong: But opensource is at least by this projects not the biggest point,
      right: But money...

      wrong: and the orignal project or somebody else can push from that again.
      right: and the people from the original project or somebody else can PULL from that.

      Comment


      • #33
        Originally posted by deanjo View Post
        Well innocent until proven guilty I say. I'll leave the guilty until proven innocent views to China.
        You know you are playing devils advocate? But theoretically you are right. So lets play with a quoting again.

        Orbiter terms (same page you quoted):

        You will not remove or alter any copyright or license notices contained in the software and documentation, or remove or alter any identifying elements, including splash screens and logos, or try to hide or reassign in any way the name or origin of the software or any of its components.
        Amazon Orbiter page:
        COPYRIGHT NOTICE: Items contained on this disc are supplied under the terms of the GNU License, the GNU Lesser General Public Licences (LPGL) or are in the Public Domain.
        Besides I don't see Orbiter logo there and it's being advertised as a "Space Shuttle Flight Simulator" (even though Orbiter is mentioned in the description). Is this enough for you?

        I didn't quote the previous short version from FAQ so it could be questioned whether this guy is right or not, I just did that to make the post shorter. For anyone thorough enough it's obvious that the guy is braking the law with Orbiter.

        Comment


        • #34
          I noticed this story today morning.
          Now, from what I can see Butterfly Media is sort of, to put it crudely, "masking" the products as their own and basically selling open source projects.

          I am in the retail open source space as well. My venture http://www.opensourcedeal.com currently sells just CDs and DVDs of FOSS Distros, but eventually plans to be a one-stop-shop for all things Open source.
          I spent quite some time reading up on opensource.org and fsf.org and I know for sure that this is perfectly legal. Isn't it ? Will I be falling in the Butterfly Media category ?

          Comment


          • #35
            Ardour as "Music/Audio Editing Tool-kit"
            http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B...D%20Trade%20UK
            Ahahahaha! The guy not only cloned ardour + its web presentation images, but added an image of mixxx application (a popular opensource dj software) as well! So I think this one is special with its double insolence. Wonder if they sell them together!. And the support is excellent from the start! Ardour doesn't work on windows systems, never has been... Woooooohooow

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            • #36
              But wait! Its tripple insolence! sorry that I couldn't see it. Theres also a lmms (linux multimedia studio) image seen in the presentation images

              Comment


              • #37
                Technically legal?

                Apart from the clear violations of some art works, do they comply with all of the sections of the applicable licences? Such as offering to supply the source code (in case of GPL)? Do they retain the copyright notices in the programs and files in the distributions?

                Comment


                • #38
                  Originally posted by RealNC View Post
                  you think they're not for no particular reason.
                  That is not the case at all, since there are provisions made in there license that imply that exceptions may be granted by the software creator that this may be the case here. It is a reasonable doubt unless evidence shows that this is not the case. The only way of acquiring such evidence would be to ask if such an exemption was granted from both involved parties. No such evidence of if an exception has been granted has been provided either way.

                  It is like when hunters want to hunt on my land. I have "No hunting or trespassing without permission of owner" signs posted around my fields. Some hunters I grant permission when they ask if they may do so (actually more like any hunter that firsts asks I will grant permission to after laying down some rules that they must agree to).

                  Now to someone who is looking in from the outside and sees a hunter on my land they may wrongfully assume that the hunter is breaking the law as they do not have the knowledge that an exception has been granted.

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Originally posted by Havner View Post
                    You know you are playing devils advocate? But theoretically you are right. So lets play with a quoting again.

                    Orbiter terms (same page you quoted):



                    Amazon Orbiter page:


                    Besides I don't see Orbiter logo there and it's being advertised as a "Space Shuttle Flight Simulator" (even though Orbiter is mentioned in the description). Is this enough for you?

                    I didn't quote the previous short version from FAQ so it could be questioned whether this guy is right or not, I just did that to make the post shorter. For anyone thorough enough it's obvious that the guy is braking the law with Orbiter.

                    See above post.

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Originally posted by deanjo View Post
                      See above post.
                      Sorry, this doesn't make a case for me. You're basically saying that when I see a burglar in my neighbours flat everything is fine because they _might_ have given him permission to steal from them.

                      And you were the one to read everything to the letter. The term you quoted had an exception "without explicit prior written permission by the licensor". The one I quoted didn't. So even if he has the permission the term quoted by me should be followed (about name, obscuring, logo, licence). Additionally he should present this on the store page.

                      I'm not saying I'm entitled to say: "this guy is guilty", no, only court can say that. But other then that your logic is failing here. As the citizens we have every right to treat this guy as a potential criminal with all the facts presented here.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        In most case for this seller, not only is he not giving any mention of the developper or license of the software, but he is also deliberately hiding the original product's name.

                        For me the "ethical" way would be at least to mention the license of the product and how much of the selling price would be given as support to the original project when paying more than the cost of the distribution itself. As an exemple, http://www.osdisc.com is dealing with selling open source software way better.

                        I also feel suspiscious about the high rating of this seller as most of the comments are too short, not descriptive at all and very repetitive.

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by screwgoth View Post
                          I noticed this story today morning.
                          Now, from what I can see Butterfly Media is sort of, to put it crudely, "masking" the products as their own and basically selling open source projects.

                          I am in the retail open source space as well. My venture http://www.opensourcedeal.com currently sells just CDs and DVDs of FOSS Distros, but eventually plans to be a one-stop-shop for all things Open source.
                          I spent quite some time reading up on opensource.org and fsf.org and I know for sure that this is perfectly legal. Isn't it ? Will I be falling in the Butterfly Media category ?
                          As long as you comply with all the licences of included meterial, you are legal. The non-free parts, such as art-work that inhibit commercial redistribution, requires explicit permission from the owners.
                          Generally all licences approved by the OSI are permitted for commercial redistribution.
                          Your case is clearly better than that of Butterfly but some of the statements on your site are dubious:
                          "We, at OpenSourceDeal.com, offer all these Linux and Open Source Distributions at the cheapest prices."
                          "make OSS available at a price level at which any consumer need not think twice before "BUYING" it."
                          You make it appear to an uninformed consumer as if the softwares in question were not available for free from their respective sites and mirrors.
                          You don't explain what added value is there in buying from you. You don't say what are you doing with the profits ( you should since obviously you are basing it on the work of others ). What is the purpose of your site, how is it better then, say http://distrowatch.com/ which provides more information (including download links) for free?
                          To be honest you should inform the customers of the nature of the softwares before they buy them and to explain why they should give the money to you.
                          A good idea would be to donate part of the profits to the involved projects.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Originally posted by misiu_mp View Post
                            Your case is clearly better than that of Butterfly but some of the statements on your site are dubious:
                            "We, at OpenSourceDeal.com, offer all these Linux and Open Source Distributions at the cheapest prices."
                            "make OSS available at a price level at which any consumer need not think twice before "BUYING" it."
                            You make it appear to an uninformed consumer as if the softwares in question were not available for free from their respective sites and mirrors.
                            You don't explain what added value is there in buying from you. You don't say what are you doing with the profits ( you should since obviously you are basing it on the work of others ). What is the purpose of your site, how is it better then, say http://distrowatch.com/ which provides more information (including download links) for free?
                            To be honest you should inform the customers of the nature of the softwares before they buy them and to explain why they should give the money to you.
                            A good idea would be to donate part of the profits to the involved projects.
                            I think you're being very unreasonable here. Why on earth would any business go out of their way to point out that something they are selling is available for free elsewhere? Why is "adding value" a necessary component of being ethical here? And most importantly, why should anyone have to justify where the profits go??? Maybe they just go in his pocket. That doesn't matter here.

                            There are many issues with selling Free Software legally & ethically:

                            1) In all cases, you must comply with the GPL. That means providing access to the full, corresponding source code yourself. You can't just pass along an offer for the source code from the original developer if you are selling copies.

                            2) Rebranding software is perfectly acceptable, as long as you preserve all copyright notices in both the source code and interfaces as required by the GPL (and most other FOSS licenses). In many cases, you actually MUST rebrand the software to sell it legally, as the original apps name may be trademarked. In order to avoid trademark infringement, you cannot represent that you are in any way connected with the mark holder. Moreover, if you make any changes to the app, you cannot ethically distribute it under the original trademarked name, as you are representing that it is the same as the original software, which it is not. In these cases, it is good to contact the original developers for guidence.

                            3) If you are NOT rebranding the software you are selling, do your best not to do anything that would increase the support load for the original developers. If you have made modifications to the software, support it yourself, or make it clear you're selling it as-is, and the original developers may not provide support.

                            4) Unfortunately, GNU/Linux distros and other apps use technology that is known to be patented in the United States and other countries that recognize software patents. You should not ship these products to these countries. Barring that, you should at least place warnings on your product page so potential customers know they could need seperate patent licenses to stay legit.

                            5) Make your own screenshots and logos, or ask for permission to use the official ones. Don't just take them without asking. While screenshots are likely a derrived work and covered under the GPL, it is lazy to borrow them, especially since it is so easy to make your own. As for logos -- see the issue with trademarks. Also, remember that many logos are not available under Free Software licenses, even if there is no trademark claimed.


                            I'm sure there are a few other points that I've left out, but those are the big ones. Of course it is always noble to donate or otherwise contriubute to the projects that make your products possible. And if you do so, there's nothing wrong with advertising that fact so your potential customers know.

                            What Butterfly Media is doing is likely a problem, because they are probably NOT offering the full source code, and in at least one case are violating a CC license. However that is not automatically an argument for demonizing anyone who takes an application like OpenOffice.org and sells it as "Amazing Office' without doing anything other than changing the name and burning a CD.

                            Butterfly Media's unfortunate behavior aside, I think it is important that we encourage the (legal) distribution of Free Software, especially in commercial venues. The more businesses that can make money selling such software, the more it will be taken seriously as a viable market.

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Havner View Post
                              Sorry, this doesn't make a case for me. You're basically saying that when I see a burglar in my neighbours flat everything is fine because they _might_ have given him permission to steal from them.
                              No that is not the case, it would be akin to seeing someone hauling a TV out of a house. You do not know that he is a burglar. They might be the moving guys for all you know. You need more information to decide if the person is a burglar. You do not have such information yet. You are right to be suspicious and that is fine. If you were to call the cops that would also be fine as you are taking a step to verify that the action is legitimate or not. The cops will take the steps as to verify if the person is a burglar or not. So far nobody has done any verification.

                              And you were the one to read everything to the letter. The term you quoted had an exception "without explicit prior written permission by the licensor". The one I quoted didn't. So even if he has the permission the term quoted by me should be followed (about name, obscuring, logo, licence). Additionally he should present this on the store page.
                              Yes, that is on the distributed copy not the website.

                              You will not remove or alter any copyright or license notices contained in the software and documentation, or remove or alter any identifying elements, including splash screens and logos, or try to hide or reassign in any way the name or origin of the software or any of its components.
                              I'm not saying I'm entitled to say: "this guy is guilty", no, only court can say that. But other then that your logic is failing here. As the citizens we have every right to treat this guy as a potential criminal with all the facts presented here.
                              My logic hasn't failed at all. I just won't burn a witch without proper proof.

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by deanjo View Post
                                No that is not the case, it would be akin to seeing someone hauling a TV out of a house. You do not know that he is a burglar. They might be the moving guys for all you know. You need more information to decide if the person is a burglar. You do not have such information yet. You are right to be suspicious and that is fine. If you were to call the cops that would also be fine as you are taking a step to verify that the action is legitimate or not. The cops will take the steps as to verify if the person is a burglar or not. So far nobody has done any verification.
                                And if you see a person hauling out a TV in the middle of the night with a flashlight? That's what I meant by burglar. Theoretically it's the same case. But this would be much more suspicious. Now compare two cases:

                                1. Selling Space Shuttle Sim with faulty info about a licence
                                2. Selling Orbiter with clear source given and a note that this is with a permission

                                I'd compare 1 to the burglar in the middle of a night and 2 to the people moving. Both _theoretically_ unclear, but in practice they are rather self explanatory.

                                Yes, that is on the distributed copy not the website.

                                My logic hasn't failed at all.
                                You will not remove or alter any copyright or license notices contained in the software and documentation, or remove or alter any identifying elements, including splash screens and logos, or try to hide or reassign in any way the name or origin of the software or any of its components.
                                I'm not a native english person so correct me if I'm wrong, but this part doesn't seem to fall under "software and documentation" if I understand this sentence correctly. It talks in general about hiding or reassigning the name/origin.

                                I just won't burn a witch without proper proof.
                                I'm not burning anyone, court is for this. But all the things presented here are some sort of proofs.

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