Making Money With Linux (Was: Help on Ubuntu advocacy)

Sean Gibbins sean at
Sun Jun 26 07:13:48 UTC 2005

Jacob Walch wrote:

>I've heard that there are shareware programmers that have hardly made a cent.  These
>are people who are actually asking for payment.  It's sad that those who give so much
>without even a wimper about not getting paid, in many cases, aren't getting paid.
>I could say much more, but I'll just leave it at this for now.
[first post to the list and coming in a bit late here, so please accept 
my apologies if I am missing the point: it looks like this thread has 
been rolling for a while!]

A lot of this debate seems to center around the premise that the people 
producing free software are doing so in the hope that money will come 
rolling in as a result of their efforts at some point.

The truth is that there are many reasons for producing free software, 
and all are equally valid and have their place.

In scanning the thread I have picked up an air of amazement that someone 
might produce something for free - there's a feeling that there's got to 
be a catch, right? Well, not necessarily. Some people do things and do 
them well just because they can and because they want to showcase their 
work. Some people want to share incredibly useful tools that they have 
produced for themselves and built up with the help of others. Others 
still want to thumb their nose at the big corporations who overcharge 
for often flaky products. Some want to cut their teeth producing free 
stuff before they start charging out for what they consider to be a 
worthwhile chargeable product. I could go on...

At the end of the day, if people are putting this stuff out there for 
free, no one need feel guilt about picking it up and making fair use of 
it. If you choose to reward the effort of the creators then good for 
you. If you choose to further their work and extend their efforts then 
great. The motivation for doing something and doing it well does not 
necessarily have to be money.

Check out the last verse of this song if you have the time; I believe it 
is relevant to my point:

FWIW it was penned and performed by a band that did very well out of 
making all their live performances available for free and charging out 
for other apsects of their work. I'm pretty certain that Messrs Garcia & 
Hunter would approve of Linux as concept, and Ubuntu as a specific 


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