Open source library software – software for which the source code has been made available for modification and distribution by its creators – is promoted as an inexpensive or even free alternative to purchasing library software licences. But is open source library software really a free or low cost option?
This article explains the different types of licences available for library software. When purchasing library software, the traditional model for software licences has been a licence in perpetuity, in other words the licensee can use the software forever. Unlike a computer or other property, software licences can not usually be transferred to another organisation, i.e….