Would you pay for software you can legally get for free?

OP
d.healey

d.healey

Senior Member
The only freedom you aren't allowed is selling a closed source product based on it without acquiring a commercial license from the copyright owners.
Not quite right, you are not allowed to sell it even if it is open source. This means if I make modifications or use some of their code in my own product I am not allowed to sell my version. This isn't a big deal for me as I have no intention of contributing to the project or making use of it but it's the principle that I'm opposed to.
 

cucio

New Member
I don't think restricting someone to sell something I made without giving anything back is a principle I would be opposed to. But to each his own, of course.
 
OP
d.healey

d.healey

Senior Member
I don't think restricting someone to sell something I made without giving anything back is a principle I would be opposed to. But to each his own, of course.
Let's say I take a small piece of useful code from the Linux Sampler or one of its libraries to include in my own project, I would not be able to sell my own project even though it is 99% my own but the Linux Sampler project code take my code and sell it in their product. Or lets say I contribute a significant feature to the Linux Sampler project, I would not be allowed to use that feature in my own separate commercial application, I wouldn't be allowed to sell copies of Linux Sampler with my significant contribution, but the Linux Sampler owners would and they would also be able to authorize other people to sell my work.

This is why free software licenses must allow for commercial redistribution because projects that are contributed to by multiple people cannot be free if the same rights are not shared by all the contributers. And anyone who downloads Linux Sampler is a potential contributer.

I guess ideally we'd want a license that said no commercial redistribution unless you add something significant to the project. But significant is very hard to define and what's important to one person isn't to another, it would also be impossible to enforce.
 
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bigcat1969

Senior Member
The advantage to music is that we can define our own goals.
If I help someone with the instruments than I have served someone and helped fulfill my destiny (is that pretentious?).
If you release your libraries under libre license then you have won by being true to your beliefs. By the way when are you releasing seems like we've been waiting a while?
On a personal music making level, I'm actually thrilled that I've released some little tunes that might be considered music in the loosest sense of the word and a few people seem to have liked them and that my friends have helped me understand music better. Given that I'm akin to a blind man trying to paint this is wonderful for me.
 

cucio

New Member
Let's say I take a small piece of useful code from the Linux Sampler or one of its libraries to include in my own project, I would not be able to sell my own project even though it is 99% my own
Depends on which piece and how small. Sure, the tastiest morsel and the only one with the commercial exception is liblinuxsampler, the main engine where all the DSP happens. But if you need to code something truly 1%-small like a, let's say, EG, you don't need to steal that from LS.

lets say I contribute a significant feature to the Linux Sampler project, I would not be allowed to use that feature in my own separate commercial application, I wouldn't be allowed to sell copies of Linux Sampler with my significant contribution, but the Linux Sampler owners would and they would also be able to authorize other people to sell my work.
If someone is thinking of making a significant contribution to liblinuxsampler, I would certainly advise to clear all those points with the original developers beforehand. From what they write in the FAQ, they seem reasonable and generous people, within understandable limits. If you contribute something really important, I don't think unlikely that they would be amenable to granting you a commercial license for the rest of the code, or counting you among the group of authors that make licensing decisions. And if they aren't, well, they are within their rights, as you are to seek greener pastures.

it would also be impossible to enforce
I think LS's non-commercial clause would be difficult to enforce in court because of the lousy way it is worded.

But why fight over it or pick at the legalese? Their intent is clear and, I think, moral, even if they are not as liberal with their work as other OSS authors are: no leeches, please play fair. I doesn't seem to me like they are looking to become leeches themselves from other potential contributors' work. If someone wants to play in their playground with commercial purposes, or wants to be sure their contributions aren't licensed commercially, they can try to talk things over and reach an agreement.

While it would certainly be more convenient for us if LS was licensed under plain GPL or, better, LGPL or MIT, it looks pretty free to me as long as I don't want to sell it. And the freedom to sell it wouldn't be one I would be comfortable to take advantage of.

Now that rambling about this has made me think about it, maybe this ties in with your original question: in the company I work for, sometimes we have made use of open source software. For us having the source code is an extra, if the developer suddenly goes off the radar and we have to perform some maintenance on it, but we'd rather the original authors did it. Unless it is one of the well-funded projects, like those in the LAMP stack, we make the point of sending some cash their way as a donation, to contribute to keep them afloat.
 

dzilizzi

Senior Member
Okay, to answer the original question. I have legally gotten "free" products that could be bought. Usually, they are lite versions of the product that come with hardware or from places like CM Magazine. Most of the time, I end up not using them because it doesn't feel right or they were something I only grabbed because it was free. And having lots of stuff seems like a good thing. :whistling:

If I do use them, I will usually go buy the next version offered, if it is a program/vst. Not sure about sample libraries, I really don't use even the ones I buy. I'm talking packs of sounds. But that has more to do with how difficult it is to find a sound I like amongst 1,000 files of clips.

I have also been the poor student. Having good free stuff is great. And it made me appreciate it more when I could afford to buy it. But I also came from a generation before easy Internet, unless you were a computer geek. So I didn't grow up with the idea that everything out there is free somewhere and it is not to hard to find. The attitude that everybody does it, so it is okay. This may be a problem for your planned model.

I also only make music as a hobby. I think if you make money from it, you need to pay for it. Even if it is just the background sound in your YouTube videos.
 
OP
d.healey

d.healey

Senior Member
If you release your libraries under libre license then you have won by being true to your beliefs. By the way when are you releasing seems like we've been waiting a while?
Yep we've been waiting a long time. I hope to release the harp very soon (by which I mean a month or two) and my woodwind library shortly after. There are a few small things to do before it will be ready and I'm getting some help with them from the developer of HISE, he's currently quite busy so I'm just waiting for his schedule to ease up a little.
 
OP
d.healey

d.healey

Senior Member
Their intent is clear and, I think, moral, even if they are not as liberal with their work as other OSS authors are: no leeches, please play fair. I doesn't seem to me like they are looking to become leeches themselves from other potential contributors' work. If someone wants to play in their playground with commercial purposes, or wants to be sure their contributions aren't licensed commercially, they can try to talk things over and reach an agreement.
Yeah I know what you mean, and I don't actually have a problem with Linux Sampler, they are doing good work. I was just saying that it's a shame there isn't a truly free, as in all four freedoms, SFZ player plugin. As it turns out though I was wrong, osxmidi at the Reaper forums put me onto SFZzero last week and I completely forgot to check it out until now, it seems to work well (I've only loaded in 1 sound font so far) but it doesn't support many opcodes, only the basic ones.