The Best and Worst of Open Source Business Tactics

Cliff Schmidt, Vice President of Legal Affairs, Apache Software Foundation

Track: Emerging Topics
Date: Wednesday, July 26
Time: 4:30pm - 5:15pm
Location: E143-144

With all the recent interest in open source business models, one can easily find plenty of theoretical advice on how a company can compete within this new software paradigm. In some cases, the advice is accompanied by a reference to one of the well-known open source success stories, as if simply copying a model that worked for one company in the past is the solution for all companies today.

This talk takes a different approach by exploring the specific actions that have led to either beneficial or costly results for the individual situation of several very different companies using open source within their business strategy. Such actions include those related to starting a new business, incorporating open source into an existing business model, designing legal frameworks, building open source communities, and marketing to those communities. Attendees of this talk will leave with a long list of tactics previously used to incorporate open source into business models, but more importantly with an understanding of why these tactics succeeded or failed for a particular context.