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Free and open source software in Turkey

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2006
Gözükeleş, İbrahim İzlem
In recent years, there has been growing interest of governments and firms for Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). However, FOSS is still a puzzlement for a wide spectrum of academic disciplines. Social scientists ask why FOSS hackers participate in FOSS if they do not get any monetary rewards. On the other hand firms ask, how a firm can earn money from FOSS. In this study, motivations of FOSS hackers and firms are taken as an interrelated phenomenon. For FOSS hackers, social and technical aspects of FOSS are essential. On the contrary to FOSS hackers, firms have profit oriented goals. In this context, conflicting and coinciding interests of FOSS hackers and firms are investigated through development of FOSS in Turkey. Software industry in Turkey is not developed enough and FOSS may play a prominent role in developing its own software industry. This study discusses FOSS both from the view of hackers and the firms in Turkey. In that respect, social conditions that make hackers voluntarily contribute, discrepancies between attitudes and behaviors of the firms and FOSS licenses are explored. According to these facts, possible FOSS business strategies which may be adopted in Turkey are presented.