Strip mining of OpenOffice.org
Speaking at the time of Sun’s decision to release Java under the GNU General Public License (GPL), Marc Fleury, the founder of JBoss, claimed that “IBM reacted negatively” to the Sun announcement because “IBM’s approach to open source is what we call ‘strip mining’, which is to let the open source community do things – then IBM comes and packages them, adds proprietary code, and markets the result,” and concluded that “they have this dual strategy of proprietary products and low-end open source.”
These remarks find an echo in Oracle’s decision to donate the code of OpenOffice.org (OO.o) to the Apache Foundation. Oracle could have donated the code to The Document Foundation and LibreOffice, the free implementation of OpenOffice.org, but didn’t. Oracle has no interest in maintaining an open source office suite, but IBM does have an interest, and has been very public in its support for Oracle’s move.