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Re: GNU economics

On Mon, 11 Mar 2019 20:30:55 +0100
Marek Mosiewicz <marek.mosiewicz@xxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> Hello,
> Debian webpage states about greedy of IT corporations. In my opinion
> it is not so easy to state it. Of course current cloud offer of MS
> Office for $12 per month would means one tryllion a year if 7 billion
> people would subscribe. That would be insane. But in fact if 100
> million would subscribe they would probably be lucky.
> That in economics is called elasticy. For one dollar we could probably
> have 1 billion subscribes. If one entity would have to pay for Office
> production it would not be created.
> Price 0 for bugless software means freedom for users. For software
> industry problem seems somewhat more complicated for me. Cost of
> creating all debian packages is probably calculated in hundreds of
> billions dollar. There are serious donations of code from corporations
> just to mention openjdk, chromium, X server etc. 
> Cost of one hundred billion (maybe it is way to much) would mean that
> one billion users would have to donate $100 dollar totally to pay off
> Debian code.
> What do you think about this ? 

Good start to a thesis. What you now have to do is work out an
objective means of determining what benefit people have obtained from
Debian, to the nearest dollar. Then deduct the cost in time for the
care and feeding that Debian requires, and also time spent on bug

Then assign a real meaning to the number you have left...

OK, if you've got that far, here's a more difficult one: I've written
today about the difference in ethos between a paid-for OS and a
free-as-in-beer one, in the difference in attitudes of the vendors in
the two environments. E.g. Microsoft and other Windows software
vendors appear to believe that they own your computer, and can do what
they like with it. That makes a difference to the user. 

Your mission, Jim, if you choose to accept it, is to determine how much
that difference is worth to the user in dollar terms. As a datum, it's
the main reason I prefer to use free software, in the long term the
price difference is negligible.