Public provision of a private good: What is the point of the BSD license?
AbstractSoftware is a potentially excludable public good. It is possible, at some cost, to exclude non-paying users from its consumption by using copyright law or technological restraints. Licensing the software under proprietary license terms makes of it a private good, licensing it under the BSD does not change the economic nature of the software while licensing it under the GPL artificially makes of it a pure public good. A project leader will prefer one or the other of those license terms depending on her software project’s market potential and on the cost of developing it. The optimal licensing for a sequence of cumulative innovations and the impact of possible competition between rival software development teams are considered.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by EconWPA in its series Industrial Organization with number 0511002.
Length: 41 pages
Date of creation: 09 Nov 2005
Date of revision:
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 41
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Web page: http://126.96.36.199
Open Source Software; Public Goods; Information Goods; Non- Profit; Volunteer Organisation; Intellectual Property; Copyright; Licensing; Innovation;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
- D45 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure and Pricing - - - Rationing; Licensing
- D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
- H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
- H42 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Publicly Provided Private Goods
- K11 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - Property Law
- L31 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Nonprofit Institutions; NGOs
- L86 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Information and Internet Services; Computer Software
- O31 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
- O32 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D
- O34 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property Rights
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2005-11-12 (All new papers)
- NEP-INO-2005-11-12 (Innovation)
- NEP-LAW-2005-11-12 (Law & Economics)
- NEP-PBE-2005-11-12 (Public Economics)
- NEP-PUB-2005-11-12 (Public Finance)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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