FUD/CounterFUD

Wednesday, July 02 2003 @ 08:21 PM EDT

Contributed by: PJ

As you may already know, a group calling itself VSI, a software federation of proprietary software firms and other hangers-on located in Munich, Germany, has put out a study, claiming that there are legal issues with using open source in Germany, because of the GPL and the openness of the process leading to copyright concerns. Heise is reporting the story in German, with an English translation here.

I smelled more coordinated FUD, so I went to find out who are the members of VSI. Here is their list of their chief members and partners (they say they have more than 170 members in all, but these are the ones that get to put their logos up on the members page):

Sun Microsytems
Microsoft
Afontis
Autodesk
Software Spectrum
Dekra
Fujitsu Siemens
and a few attorneys.

Yup. No agenda there.

As usual, the Babelfish translation is just off enough to be a challenge, but there is no way to miss what this part means:

"Anyhow the result might come been appropriate for the VSI, in order to disconcert open SOURCE prospective customers, who at present pursue the procedure of SCO against IBM strained."

Now for your dose of Anti-FUD, here's what is happening in Germany. Infoworld reports on a study, released on Tuesday, that predicts a huge growth in the use of open source software in Germany:

"Germany is poised to see sales of open source software and services grow substantially over the next few years, particularly in the public sector. In its report 'The Market for Open Source Software in Germany,' Soreon Research projects that sales of open source software and services will rise from 131 million German marks (US$152 million) today to 307 million German marks by 2007. ... The study was based on interviews with 150 companies and organizations in the private and public sectors, excluding the agricultural market, using 10 PCs or more, said research director Steffen Binder."

Anybody see a connection between these two stories? Besides me, I mean.

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