Mozilla launch ‘for profit’ subsidary

The Mozilla Foundation has today announced the creation of a ‘for profit’ subsidary, The Mozilla Corporation.
As Mozilla has prided itself on its Open Source philosophy and non-profit structure this is a pretty interesting move, and one that is sure to cause great debate across the Open Source community.
As it stands, the purpose of the new corporation is not completely known. According to the website the new wing will make money which will then be pumped back into software development. How it will make this money remains unclear. They promise that Firefox and Thunderbird will remain free but the software will be distributed under the new subsidary. There is no mention of how the corporation plans to make profit from free software.
There is the possibility of a two-tiered software package, such as a basic and professional release. There is also the possibility that the company will charge for customer support networks or even launch new products with a price tag.
It’s hard to begrudge something so wonderful a profit, but when a company is built up on a non-profit structure it is hard to see how this move will not have a negative effect on its users.
The reaction amongst Open Source advocates shall be an interesting one.

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