I am a strong supporter of open source software, copyleft licensing of all kinds, and open hardware, and I love watching creative licensing change the world. As a way of giving a little back to the open source community, I am generally happy to provide free consultations to open hardware or software projects and organizations. If more than a simple consultation is required, I may be able to work with you at a rate you can afford. Please feel free to get in touch and tell me about your project.
Some of the ways I could help might include a review of your organization’s structure, strategy, and intellectual property, ensuring that your licenses are appropriate and enforceable, selecting an appropriate license based on the goals you hope to achieve, coordination of copyright, patent or trademark registration around the world, or enforcement of your organization’s intellectual property rights in the event that your license has been violated.
I enjoy working with forward-thinking corporate clients interested in harnessing the power of creative or open source licensing to achieve business objectives, and I offer software license compliance assessments for businesses that use open source software.
Open source is all about using the law and intellectual property protection creatively to achieve goals. Those goals may be purely altruistic – a desire to share, to teach, to encourage community participation, or just to contribute to the collective set of intellectual property that is available for use by anyone. But creative licensing can also achieve more directly practical goals: A programmer may start or contribute to an open source project because she needed software functionality that wasn’t previously available. A business might choose to open-source a piece of software that it developed for internal use with the hope that in return, members of the global programming community will volunteer to contribute to its further development and testing, at no cost to the business. Or a group of companies with a shared need for a particular type of software might band together, develop the initial framework, and release the software under an open license in order to encourage the community to share in its development.
I can help you develop an open source strategy and structure that ensures that you can achieve your goals, and enforce your rights in the event that your license is violated.