Open Source Movable Type

As a one-time user of Movable Type (who still owns a full license for 3.x), I thought this was great news.
bq.Six Apart, the world’s leading independent blogging software and services company, today announced the beta release of Movable Type 4, a blogging platform designed to meet the website content management needs of growing organizations and to serve as a social media platform that enables businesses to create community-driven websites. This beta release continues Movable Type’s tradition of powering many of the web’s most popular blogs for over five years. – “Six Apart(Six Apart Announces Movable Type 4 beta – blogging’s next step toward a flexible, extensible social media platform for businesses and power bloggers)”:http://www.sixapart.com/about/press/2007/06/six_apart_annou_10.html But I do have admit I found this article rather amusing on a couple of points.
bq.There’s a lot of history between MT users and SixApart. Although Movable Type was never an open source platform, prior to the release of MT 3.0 many treated MT as if it was open source. The decision to enforce licensing with the release of MT 3.0 caused widespread outrage in 2004 (including rather vocally from myself) and in many ways was a tipping point that delivered WordPress from relative obscurity to being the popular blogging CMS it is today. Dash said that commercially SixApart had no choice other than to enforce licensing at the time. However SixApart in 2007 is a thriving company with a broad suite of popular products, including TypePad, Vox and LiveJournal, and today can afford to give back to the blogging community. – “Duncan Riley(Movable Type 4.0 Beta Launches, Platform To Be Open Sourced)”:http://www.techcrunch.com/2007/06/05/movable-type-40-beta-launches-platform-to-be-open-sourced/ It wasn’t the fact the licensing terms were being enforced for the first time, it was the fact that they were being changed.
bq.With 3.0 we have revised our licenses and pricing structure to address this issue. We feel that with this new release we have created licensing that allows and encourages the development of software and services paid or free. – “Mena Trott(It’s About Time)”:http://www.sixapart.com/about/corner/2004/05/its_about_time.html Which led to moments like this.
bq.And yesterday I learned, as most of you have probably also learned, that Movable Type 3.0 comes with a new licensing plan. 1 author and 3 sites is free. Up to 3 authors and 5 sites: $100. Up to 6 authors and 8 sites: $150. Up to 9 authors and 10 sites: $190. I have 11 Movable Type sites. To upgrade to Movable Type 3.0 would cost me $700. But wait! If I act now, I can take advantage of the special introductory price of $600. Also, all the voluntary donations I’ve made over the years also count towards my purchase. That was $20, and later $45. That brings the price down to $535. $535 for comment moderation. – “Mark Pilgrim(Freedom 0)”:http://diveintomark.org/archives/2004/05/14/freedom-0 Some people were even harsher.
bq.I also think that it’s pretty much a given that when SixApart announced MT 3.0 they abandoned their then user base as well. – “Duncan Riley(MT isn’t going to die, you’re just not going to see the MT brand as much)”:http://www.duncanriley.com/2006/07/17/mt-isnt-going-to-die-youre-just-not-going-to-see-the-mt-brand-as-much/ Of course, some concerns were certainly addressed.
bq.We’ve updated the site with the new pricing and licensing options. – “Mena Trott(Announcing Pricing & Licensing Changes to Movable Type)”:http://www.sixapart.com/about/news/2004/06/announcing_pric.html And addressed again.
bq.We also continue to make our personal license for Movable Type even more open: The personal version of Movable Type is now completely free, and supports as many blogs and authors as you want. – “Jay Allen(A blog for every business: Movable Type Enterprise and Movable Type 3.3)”:http://www.sixapart.com/movabletype/news/2006/08/movable-type-free.html These days, I still prefer to use Textpattern for most projects. I have never been comfortable with the way WordPress does things. But I still miss some of the power and flexibility that Movable Type offered. So perhaps I will take another look (I downloaded the Beta while I was typing this).