22 Jul 2000 mrchrist   » (Observer)

An issue that I've been struggling with for a while is the relationship between free software development and employment as a programmer. I had a problem at my last job where I finished a perl module and I wanted to release it to CPAN. Although the work was done at home, I decided to follow the appropriate channels. Needless to say, the answer I got was not the answer I wanted -- my employer owned anything I did on or off the job that was "related" to my work. Which, of course, as a web developer, is just about anything. I could submit the thing to a board for a limited or educational release licence, but they'd have to evaluate its potential commercial value first. Beh.

How do people deal with this? Do we just go ahead and do our GPL projects and hope they never become big/popular enought that companies try to legally grab them? Do we not even bother if we're under the kind of contracts that most programmers are? Is their a happy medium? No idea...

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