[Opinion] Selling closed source apps to community users

A few days ago I got a mail from a pretty active member of this forum asking if I am interested in a solution that extends the payrol functionalilty of ERPNext and adds biometric based time and attendence to it.

Of course I was interested. He did the demo and I must admit the customisation is very slick and smooth, what I have always wanted. Really good.

Unfortunately he wanted to sell this customisation as a SAAS. At $2 per employee per month, minimum of 25 employees. Thats $50 per month minimum, per instance

Let us put this in perspective, this would be 1.8 times more expensive than my AVERAGE client pays for using the WHOLE of ERPNext itself and I am expected to pay this for using a fraction of one module out of over 10 modules.

But more to the point, this customisation is a fantastic candidate for bringing into the Core product, I politely told the marketer this, and also pointed out that I have also paid for quite a bit of customisastions which are currently in the core and am sure are been used by all, the Marketer inclusive.

As a show of good faith I instead offered to contribuite towards the development costs, unfortunately till now I am yet to hear back from them. I guess I have become a bad prospect.

I am sure @rmehta and the rest of the ERPNext team experience this all the time, this is my first contact with what I consider to be an unfair tactic in the open source community and I am quite pissed.

So now I know why Rushabh sounds pissed most of the time.




As I often say, each one of us must arrive at the point of truly understanding the spirit of open source individually. Unfortunately, it takes some people a lot longer than others

One thing is certain though, the feature will soon be available in the core of the product… it’s up to this member to decide if they will be the one who adds to the legacy of ERPNext or not

Once again, my respect goes to the Core Team who have committed themselves to true Open Source and given the whole world this excellent product. Kudos to all contributors as well



Hi there,

Is this even legal with the license used by ERPnext?