Bad copy problem

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The bad copy problem occurs when Consumerium's own code, data, support groups or community of trusting users enable services which compete with the Consumerium Services. It is made much worse when the entity, i.e. the Consumerium Governance Organization, set up to project a certain set of values, does not have the power under the Consumerium License to stop it.

Various expressions of the bad copy problem are part of several worst cases.

To some degree this has already happened to free software in several ways:

  1. open source is to a degree a "bad copy" of the free software concept that lures in many contributors who would otherwise contribute to free software - at least, according to Richard Stallman they would otherwise contribute! There is no independent evidence that this is true outside his ideology.
  2. open source licenses themselves allow developers to extend and "protect" their extensions under patent law or independent copyright, unlike in free software licenses
  3. the extreme variety of versions of operating systems and file systems like Linux makes it impossibly difficult to concentrate maintenance and usability effort, making for an OS that is hard for the ordinary user to maintain due to sheer dilution and confusion
  4. Richard Stallman himself has objected to Linux incorporating many GNU utilities and not calling itself "GNU Linux", but the GPL never asked for this nor applied any trademark or other instrument that would make this a condition of re-use of those utilities; Presumably, having one "GNU Linux" would make it easier to tell the best version(s) from dozens of nasty variants.

It's also happened to wiki code. There are a huge number of versions that seem to exist for no particular reason other than that someone wanted to write a wiki (see self-interested fork problem). This drastically dilutes the effort available to make any of them of any use.