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In a discussion on why directly monetizing an existing free software project doesn't work:

"There's a long list of free shit that we're building on top of. It's a bit like somebody sticking a cherry ontop of a free cake then trying to charge for it."
- A rather accurate HN comment. news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2

@ayo I feel like that's in bad faith as most software companies are doing exactly the same and they mostly seem to be profitable.

@abs This is in the context of monetizing free software; there aren't many companies doing that.

Proprietary software is a whole different beast, of course; But that's typically targeted at users who didn't expect the cake to be free in the first place.

@ayo But that's a completely different (and way more valid) argument then: People don't expect to pay for FOSS, regardless of whether it uses 1000 other projects or was written from scratch.

@abs Uh, right, I see now that the argument could be interpreted to mean that it's unfair to ask for money when you're building on top of free software. That's not how I initially read it.

The argument is indeed that it doesn't make much sense to build a business around selling a free software component to people who don't pay a thing for any of the other free software components they use.

@ayo oh ffs do i have to pull that out from my g+ archives? ugh

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