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[EP-tech] EPrints 3.4 and the Managed Availability programme.
I am sure that I'm not the only one for whom one of the most compelling reasons that I have been an EPS customer is that EPrints is an open source project, and paying for EPS support meant contributing to the open source community. This move, towards "managed availability", will drive those customers who hold open source as a core value away from EPS; and it should be obvious that as a community, we tend to hold open source as a core value
"The notion of Managed Availability is that rather than having an open beta or preview, that the software is released in a controlled way, until eventually it is at a point where it will become fully open."
Thank you for posting this information, but it still doesn't answer the question that I asked. What license is the code that you do distribute 3.4 under, right now, before it is "open"? The GPL license, gives those people who have the code the right to share it, add to it, etc. it guarantees end users the freedom to run, study, share and modify the software.
Can an EPS customer share and modify the software that it got from EPS, during the "managed availability" period? If not, then this is not open source software. To be open source, it has to have an open source license.
Right now, the "managed availability" source sounds like a license that is much like a publisher embargo with no expiry date set. EPS will decide when the embargo expiry will be. That is very difficult to accept, and possibly legally problematic. I know that I would be very reluctant to include source code under those conditions, in any open repository.
From: eprints-tech-bounces at ecs.soton.ac.uk <eprints-tech-bounces at ecs.soton.ac.uk> on behalf of Justin Bradley <jb4 at ecs.soton.ac.uk>
Sent: Thursday, June 29, 2017 7:19 AM
To: eprints-tech at ecs.soton.ac.uk
Subject: [EP-tech] EPrints 3.4 and the Managed Availability programme.
EPrints 3.4 and the Managed Availability programme.
We're very proud of EPrints' open source commitment and the ecology of users, developers and businesses that has co-developed with the software in the past 17 years.
The ?Managed Availability" is a delay in releasing the source code that allows us (EPrints Services, EPS) to keep a sufficient base of subscribing customers, to stay in business, and continue developing the code in terms of bug fixes and new features. It also ensures a way for proper governance of the code base.
We are committed to release version 3.4 as open source once EPS clients, our only source of funding for the expensive business of core development and maintenance, have had the opportunity to benefit from new developments.
EPrints Services is located in an academic department of the University of Southampton, not in a business services unit. We are not seeking profit, but we are seeking the right balance of commercial income and community benefits to allow EPrints to continue to serve the open access community into the future. The approach that we have taken has successfully used commercial subscription to sustain the ongoing development of EPrints for the benefit of the community as a whole in a tight funding environment.
Our apologies that we haven't been clear enough about availability and the future licensing. In truth, we've been feeling our way forward in quite challenging funding circumstances for UK and global academia and academic libraries. Please let's continue the discussion about how to make sure that we get this balance right.
The notion of Managed Availability is that rather than having an open beta or preview, that the software is released in a controlled way, until eventually it is at a point where it will become fully open.
If as a developer or as someone who manages their own EPrints repository you wish to work with 3.4, then you should get in touch.
Strategy & Technical Lead
University of Southampton
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