- May 2016
Hence Linux, hence Wikipedia. Because these communities could grow and collaborate without geographic constraint, major work was done at significantly lower cost and often zero price.
I would argue this was a mistake which we are now paying for structurally.
If Linux was licensed such that derivative profitable use payed equity to the contributors to Linux, than many more people would share in the profits of Google, Facebook, Amazon, Rackspace, and so many more. If you take Google as an example, the company earns ~4.5M$ in profit per employee, of course 80% of their infrastructure is free software. Now imagine that each project on github was wired up using microtransaction systems and a system for assigning equity to those who contribute to the source code. Then as for-profit use of the application generates microtransactions that revenue is split by the current equity distribution to the equity holders.
This distribution of revenue would allow for a hybrid between the open and distributed, also a more sovereign participation model of open source and the benefits of economic integration rather than simple exposure to economic exploitation.