Fwd: Roundcube merger - Ideas from atmail

WOODS John John.Woods at axa-im.com
Wed Jul 26 12:44:03 CEST 2006

I am inclined to agree with Michael on this.

The timing of this offer is very interesting. Roundcube is very close to
an excellent beta 2 and full release cannot be more than six months

@mail is doing this on purely commercial grounds (nothing wrong with
that) but it would be sad to see such a good Open Source project
disappear as it surely would.

However, I would like to understand what would happen to the source code
if Thomas should decide to sell. Who actually owns the code given that
at least a dozen people have contributed?

Is it the case that the code will remain open even after he sells it and
therefore couldn't anyone else start a new project from what exists

Whatever Thomas does that is his decision and we should all congratulate
him on creating an outstanding webmail client and wish him well.

-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Bueker [mailto:m.bueker at berlin.de] 
Sent: 26 July 2006 11:23
To: Thomas Bruederli
Cc: dev at lists.roundcube.net; Uwe at mtu.homelinux.net;
Schaefer at mtu.homelinux.net
Subject: Re: Fwd: Roundcube merger - Ideas from atmail

On Wed, 26 Jul 2006 09:49:34 +0200, "Thomas Bruederli"
<roundcube at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi everybody,


> Just wanted to forward a mail I've got yesterday and would like to

> hear your opinions about this topic. Either this could make RoundCube

> grow faster or atmail just wants to get rid of some (more and more

> serious) competition.

I am totally opposed to this idea.

First of all, it would damage roundcube's reputation insofar as there
will always be the "better" commercial version of <whatever
rounbcude+atmail would be called>. I am sure this would make less people
want to even try roundcube. And frankly, I would prefer a smaller, less
functional but totally free application over the open source branch of
something commercial any day.

Secondly, they are proposing to buy roundcube out, and if I understood
correctly, they want to buy the license. That would not only mean that
they'll use all of roundcube's features in their commercial product
(which I'd simply oppose because the work wasn't meant to be aiding
their profit), but also that they could un-open source the open source
tree any day.

Thirdly, they want to buy roundcube out. While that may be nice in terms
of their business world, I think it's totally inappropriate, because it
would be impossible to evenly distribute the money among everyone who's
contributed to roundcube during its development.

Call me an FOSS radical, but this offer violates my principles. Not that
I have a lot to say, being new here, but still. I'd very much like
roundcube to stay completely free as in speech.



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