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Squiz Releases Newest Version of its MySource Matrix Content Management System under the GPL Open Source Licence

  • 16 January, 2007 15:22

<p><i>Licensing Scheme to Provide Users with New Support Choices</i></p>
<p>Sydney, 16th January 2006</p>
<p>Australian software development company Squiz.net today announced the release of the newest version of its MySource Matrix open source CMS, version 3.12, under the GPL open source licence. This new version includes more than 80 new features and a series of extensions that were previously only available as 'Commercial Modules' under a paid-for license.</p>
<p>Squiz, which started life as a web-development company in 1998 and later progressed to specialise in enterprise-level Content Management Systems, was an early adopter of open source software (OSS), and is now recognised as Australia's largest CMS vendor with around 100 staff and a growing, global network of offices in Sydney, Hobart, Melbourne, Canberra, Wellington and London. </p>
<p>MySource Matrix is an enterprise-class open source CMS that enables organisations to cost-effectively build and manage large and complex web sites and intranets. It runs some of the world's largest intranet and web publishing platforms for leading government, education and private sector organisations. MySource Matrix users include many departments in the Australian Federal Government (see <a href="http://www.sourceit.gov.au/">www.sourceit.gov.au</a>) and the NHS in the UK. Other users include Austereo, Future Publishing and Oxford University.</p>
<p>Despite the product's global appeal, Squiz has always provided MySource Matrix at no cost under an open source licence, and derived its revenues from professional support and development services around it. Squiz's decision to adopt the GPL is significant for two reasons: firstly, it underscores Squiz's commitment to the open source development model; and secondly, it illustrates that such a model can be followed as a successful commercial strategy in Australia and around the world.</p>
<p>Squiz's decision to adopt the GPL is based on its acceptance by the majority of the Open Source community as the "purest" of the various Open Source licensing regimes. Many in the international community see GPL as the defining characteristic of Open Source - what makes Open Source "free".</p>
<p>As part of this move, Squiz also announced that it will offer a second version of the MySource Matrix product under a new, paid-for licence called the Squiz Supported Version licence (SSV). The code and functionality for the two products will be identical, except the new SSV version will also include a bundled package of Squiz support services and some additional add-on modules. Importantly, Squiz still promise to make these add-on modules available at no additional cost to its government, education and not-for-profit clients.</p>
<p>Steve Barker, Director and co-founder of Squiz says: "This new approach to licencing is great news for both the MySource Matrix development community and our customers. The GPL gives developers all the freedom they need to take and extend the product, whilst Squiz's new SSV licence gives organisations the choice to acquire a warranted version of the product - which is something that the GPL excludes. Looking ahead, instead of licensing fees, we will continue to sell support services which include warranty, help-desk support and uptime-guarantees to organisations that need this level of certainty, whilst other MySource Matrix users can choose to develop and support the product themselves if that is what they prefer.”</p>
<p>The dual-licensing model, where users are able to select between open source (GPL) or vendor supported (SSV) licences for the same product, is an already proven approach. MySQL and Sun's Star Office use the same technique and have succeeded in making their open source products “business friendly”.</p>
<p>"By adopting this new dual-licence regime, Squiz intends to address the Achilles heal of Open Source software products in the commercial world.” Says John-Paul Syriatowicz, Managing Director and co-founder of Squiz. “Our clients can now choose to take advantage of the cost-savings associated with an open source product, whilst at the same time enjoying the support assurances offered by traditional proprietary software.”</p>
<p>Squiz's new licensing model has been well received by open source advocates in Australia. Donna Benjamin, director of Open Source Industry Australia says: “This is a very welcome development. OSIA has actively encouraged Squiz to make a shift to using an Open Source license defined and ratified by the Open Source Initiative. It's no easy task. It involves complex legal analysis of copyright law, and understanding of the strategic implications, so whilst it has taken longer than we hoped it would, it is in the end a bold and exciting step forward for Squiz. After all, this is an Australian company, doing business around the world, naturally we're very pleased they've chosen the GPL, and we wish them every success.”</p>
<p>For more information on Squiz and MySource Matrix, visit <a href="http://www.squiz.net">www.squiz.net</a>.</p>
<p>Press Enquires</p>
<p>All press enquiries should be directed to John-Paul Syriatowicz by emailing press@squiz.net or calling +61 2 8507 9900.</p>

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