"There’s Still No Viable Open Source Business Model"
SourceHut proves this wrong. Every single line of code we've written is open source, since day one. There are no periodic code dumps, no prototyping in private, no open core with paid extensions. We accept patches from the public. Our company is 100% bona-fide open source.
We've been profitable for 2 years, and our profit margin continues to grow. We published our Q3 financial report last week:
It's still early, and we're still small. We did not take on any outside investments, either. But the model works. You CAN make money in open source.
@sir The example of sourcehut is the kind of sustainable slow growth business that should be the norm.
I understand your goal is not to become the next Github. But I see no harm in providing support to paying customers (once your at the stage to provide it). If I'm not mistaken sr.ht will become a pay to use (excluding your exceptions) once it leaves alpha or beta?
@sir @urusan Ah, ok now that makes sense. I do think it could hit stagnation at some point. Which could force one to expand their revenue generation from the business, but will being open-source and fair.
But I am not for these rapid fast growing companies that bill themsevles as lean, mean, money producing machine in order to be bought for a large sum.
I really dispise those with a passion.
@sir @urusan Now let clarify something, I know sr.ht is your baby and something you are passionate about. Anything I say is not a negative comment to you or sr.ht. I'm purely looking at things from a business point of view while still trying to hang on to the open-source ideaology.
I for one use and support sourcehut and your idea/business you are growing. And hope for nothing but the best.
Privileging some customers above that baseline is how you end up with feature creep and unbalanced motivations that take your product down evolutionary dead ends.
I hope SourceHut avoids that particular tarpit.
@sir Also Plausible Analytics is arguably pretty successful using a lot of the same ethos as an open source company.
@sir I thing many companies including sourcehut have proven that you can make a living working on foss. It does seem like certain kinds of software are easier to sell like this than others.
Services like sourcehut is one model that seems to work. Enterprise support like Redhat another.
It seems like desktop apps are a little harder but it could work. Ardour open source and still kicking, but there seem to be fewer examples.
@sir I remember hearing an interview a while back with the head of Invoice Ninja which is open source. He said most of there clients used there paid service, but the ones that self hosted more than made up for the lost revenue in high quality bug reports and patches.
@zethra there are several self-hosted instances of sourcehut and I'm pretty sure all of them have sent multiple patches upstream each
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