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"Don't you think that is a bit over-paranoid?"

I don't think he is.

"If OOo was so valuable how come they didn't actually sell it off to someone
like IBM for real dollars?"

How do I know that it did not happen? do you know what negotiation occurred
between Oracle and IBM, do you know the terms they agreed to?  all I know is
that whitin 30 minutes of the Oracle announce there was 3 page-long blog
from IBMers linking each-other and prasing it... that is not reacting to a
news, that is an orchestrated PR campaign.

" I should think there is probably broader commercial or legal reason "
Sure.. Who knows what footnote there is regarding the Trademark.. Oracle,
for example, grant unlimited use of the mark to Apache, but reserve the
right to use the mark itself as it see fit? with a well crafted NDA to boot

Then drop the code to Apache... see what happen. the worse thing that can
happen is that it dies... which from Oracle point of view is the same as if
they did not transfer the code...(for all intent and purpose the project _is_ dead, look at if you have any doubt)
and at best the code evolve well, and who knows, Apache can even achieve
what Oracle didn't: lure honest Free Software people to unwittingly promote
close-source by agreeing to contribute under the Apache License.... and at
some point they can take it all back ( a bug^Hfeature of the Apache License)
and use the Trademark to capture a significant part of an unsuspecting
market (we, on these lists may be very aware of who the players are and who
does what... but the public at large is not)

What a beautiful business plan. at worse you don't lose anything, at best
you got a ton of work for free. 

Note: Trademark are usually not that important for developer centric
application/libraries... who remember what ethereal was? everybody moved on
to wireshark... Hudson is already a footnote in history, anybody that matter
to that project already knows that Jenkins is their new home... Xfree86 ?
(come to think of it, I'm surprised they didn't apply to Apache.. it seems
to be the weapon of choice for counter-fork these days...) but for end-users
of a product like that is a different story.

And just in case that is not clear to some readers:
If you contribute code under the Apache License, you might just as well have
contributed that code to Oracle with copyright assigignment. The copryright
assignment was there only to nullify the protection granted to you by the
GPL as far as the assignee (Oracle) is concerned. Apache License achieve the
same thing, just more straight forwardly, with a much more polish PR spin on

So if you had objection to contribute to Oracle under these terms you should
be just as reluctant to contribute anything under the Apache License.


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