Free-Libre Open Source Software as a Public Policy Choice

International Journal on Advances in Internet Technology, Vol. 3, Nos. 3 & 4, pp. 212-222, 2010

11 Pages Posted: 3 Apr 2011

See all articles by Thomas Margoni

Thomas Margoni

University of Glasgow - School of Law - CREATe; University of Glasgow - CREATe, RCUK Centre for Copyright and New Business Models in the Creative Economy

Mark Perry

University of New England - School of Law; University of Western Ontario - Faculty of Law; the University of Western ONtario ; The University of Auckland; University of New England

Date Written: December 1, 2010

Abstract

Free Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS) is characterised by a specific programming and development paradigm. The availability and freedom of use of source code are at the core of this paradigm, and are the prerequisites for FLOSS features. Unfortunately, the fundamental role of code is often ignored among those who decide the software purchases for Canadian public agencies. Source code availability and the connected freedoms are often seen as unrelated and accidental aspects, and the only real advantage acknowledged, which is the absence of royalty fees, becomes paramount. In this paper we discuss some relevant legal issues and explain why public administrations should choose FLOSS for their technological infrastructure. We also present the results of a survey regarding the penetration and awareness of FLOSS usage into the Government of Canada. The data demonstrates that the Government of Canada shows no enforced policy regarding the implementation of a specific technological framework (which has legal, economic, business, and ethical repercussions) in their departments and agencies.

Keywords: Public policy, data analysis, derivative works, licences, public sector, policy recommendations

Suggested Citation

Margoni, Thomas and Perry, Mark, Free-Libre Open Source Software as a Public Policy Choice (December 1, 2010). International Journal on Advances in Internet Technology, Vol. 3, Nos. 3 & 4, pp. 212-222, 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1800902

Thomas Margoni (Contact Author)

University of Glasgow - School of Law - CREATe ( email )

Scotland
United Kingdom

University of Glasgow - CREATe, RCUK Centre for Copyright and New Business Models in the Creative Economy

Glasgow
United Kingdom

Mark Perry

University of New England - School of Law ( email )

Armidale, New South Wales 2351
Australia
=61 2 67732901 (Phone)

University of Western Ontario - Faculty of Law ( email )

London, Ontario N6A 3K7 N6A 3K7
Canada
1519661211 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.csd.uwo.ca/~markp

the University of Western ONtario ( email )

London, Ontario N6A 3K7 N6A 3K7
Canada
1519661211 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.csd.uwo.ca/~markp

The University of Auckland ( email )

Private Bag 92019
Auckland Mail Centre
Auckland, 1142
New Zealand

University of New England ( email )

School of Law
Armidale, New South Wales 2351
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://une.edu.au/law

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