Open source, open conflict?

I am currently messing around in the pits of .NET e-commerce. I thought it would be the last place I’d find open source inspired disharmony. But no, even here it is to be found. ๐Ÿ˜‰

OK, a bit of background.

NOP Commerce is an ecommerce platform based on Microsoft’s open source ASP.NET platform. The project has been around for five or six years or so. Gets very good reviews too. Last year SmartStore.NET forked NOP. Nothing wrong with that, NOP is GPL’ed. That would be fine except for a clause in NOPs license which states that you must keep a link in your website footer to the project website unless you pay a small $60 waiver fee.

The problem, and the tension, comes from SmartStore.NET having removed the link requirement from their fork.

Whatever the legalities involved, and I am not legally qualified to comment either way, the SmartStore.NET fork doesn’t feel right. The NOP guys have put a ton of work into the project and they deserve better.

The sad thing is that there is a lot in SmartStore.NET to like. Wouldn’t a better option have been to merge the changes into NOP Commerce so that everybody wins?

Update: if you are after a .NET based e-commerce system then Virto Commerce is worth a look. Looks to be maturing quickly.