Supply Source Code to Vendor
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Thread: Supply Source Code to Vendor

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    4

    Supply Source Code to Vendor

    I recently ran into an issue where our vendor wants my source code. They say they will modify and maintain the code. The only problem with this is that we are not in any partnership to develop code for each other. The extent of our business relationship with the vendor is using their product and asking them with maintenance help. The current code they want is a program outside of their product, but it performs very useful tasks. The vendor wants the source code so they can plug it into their product. What should I do?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
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    Currently in Mexico City
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    566

    Re: Supply Source Code to Vendor

    Depending on your particular situation, which probably is an attorney's job, and considering you've never agreed to turn the sources in:

    - renegotiate the new sub-project, customer will likely accept it since you've developed the main application and should know its intestines better than anyone;
    - if the first one is not an option - provide customer with detailed documentation on inputs/outputs of you software if there are any. Btw, this should be done by default unless you want to keep your customer in darkness intentionally;
    - and of course you shouldn't give the customer the source code itself unless you come to some kind of agreement regarding this issue. There are plenty of smart ashes who just love to steal other's work;
    Wanna install linux on a vacuum cleaner. Could anyone tell me which distro sucks better?

    I had a nightmare last night. I was dreaming that Iím 64-bit and my blanket is 32-bit and I couldnít cover myself with it, so Iíve spent the whole night freezing. And in the morning I find that my blanket just had fallen off the bed. =S (from: bash.org.ru)

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    UK
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    4,474

    Re: Supply Source Code to Vendor

    Unless there's a contract in place the Vendor can't demand the source code. If it's all your work and you own the copyright you can do whatever you want with it .

    So you have a number of choices such as:

    1. Refuse to let them have the source code.

    2. Give it to them free of charge under something like the GNU GPL .

    3. Charge them for it. Decide on what value you believe it has and tell the Vendor what the cost will be.

    4. Trade it. If the vendor has something you want (eg some product knowledge that will give you an advantage over your competitors) then negotiate a deal whereby they get your code and you get something in return. But make sure you aren't going to breach any laws such as anti-competition laws in your country.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Currently in Mexico City
    Posts
    566

    Re: Supply Source Code to Vendor

    Nice addition... =)
    Wanna install linux on a vacuum cleaner. Could anyone tell me which distro sucks better?

    I had a nightmare last night. I was dreaming that Iím 64-bit and my blanket is 32-bit and I couldnít cover myself with it, so Iíve spent the whole night freezing. And in the morning I find that my blanket just had fallen off the bed. =S (from: bash.org.ru)

    //always looking for job opportunities in AU/NZ/US/CA/Europe :P
    willCodeForFood(Arrays.asList("Java","PHP","C++","bash","Assembler","XML","XHTML","CSS","JS","PL/SQL"));

    USE [code] TAGS! Read this FAQ if you are new here. If this post was helpful, please rate it!

  5. #5
    dlorde is offline Elite Member Power Poster
    Join Date
    Aug 1999
    Location
    UK
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    10,163

    Re: Supply Source Code to Vendor

    This is surely just like any other deal where they want to get a license to use and maintain someone else's source code. You license it to them for certain specified uses (e.g. internal, non-commercial use, or non-competitive commercial use only as part of their own product, or full commercial use with fees/royalty, etc., etc). You also need a disclaimer in case they lose money using it. You have to decide what it's worth to you, and harder still, what it's worth to them. Definitely get legal advice before making any commitments, and to draw up the license (be careful copying other people's license conditions - some have traps for plagiarists).

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