Lots of pdf files

Terry Hancock hancock at anansispaceworks.com
Fri Jul 22 16:24:43 CEST 2005


On Friday 22 July 2005 03:43 am, Richie Hindle wrote:
> > a mere $29.90, except it is GPL'd so I'm not sure what the money is for
> "Tech support [...] free forever for registered users."

Hmm. Though that raises the old spectre of charging a fixed price for
a "loss center".
 
> But I've often wondered whether you could charge for mass-market GPL software
> simply because your ordinary punter doesn't know what the GPL is, and doesn't
> mind paying a small amount of money for decent software.  Whether it's
> ethical, given that presumably the thing is GPL because it inherits GPL code
> from other developers, I don't know.  Certainly the GPL itself has no
> objection to charging for binaries provided you ship the source as well.

Sure it's ethical. I suspect most GPL developers would love to see it work.
Of course, you might have to worry about them pre-empting you. ;-)

The problem is that competition will tend to drive the price to the marginal
cost of distribution.  By tacking on a value-added feature (printed documentation
or tech support), you are improving the "production quality" of the copy
you are selling, which means you can (sustainably) charge a bit more.

Still hard to make money at it, though.

--
Terry Hancock ( hancock at anansispaceworks.com )
Anansi Spaceworks  http://www.anansispaceworks.com




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