MadeSafe GPL v3 Means that Closed Source Apps must PAY to use MaidSafe

According to one interview the use of the GPL version 3 infection by aggregation within the MaidSafe is not an accident, but a deliberate decision to make sure that closed source software has to pay to store/retrieve data from the SAFE Network. I first thought accidentally that the development payment side was covered by inflating the storage capacity sales related safecoins in the favor of the “central bank”, the MaidSafe investors, including the venture capitalists and I found even that to be pretty dubious, because the moment there is a “central bank” that all of the money system is designed to pay profit to, then from security point of view it’s only a matter of time, till someone else sets up its own “central bank” and then there will be a set of “central bank” analogues on the network that earn at the expense of those users of the network that do not run their own “central bank”. I emphasize that I distinguish the “central bank” from “farming”. According to my opinion it’s fair, if sotrage space is sold, but the original authors and “investors” (read: more sophisticated loan sharks) should not get themselves an forever-milking cache cow that gives milk as long as the network is up. If on top of that one has to PAY to the investors for using the network in some specific use cases, like closed source software, then that’s like insult on top of an injury.

Neither am I capable of seeing, how can a solution, where the original authors of the crypto-freedom-software USE LAWYERS and INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW to EXTORT MONEY from some of the users of their software to be in line with the crypto-freedom SPIRIT. If something is meant to be FREE, then AS A MATTER OF PHILOSOPHY it is not possible to limit some users from using it, irrespective of their use case, business model, philosophy, action.

Thank You for reading my comment.
P.S. I am very biased, because my pet project is Silktorrent.

Its for the protection of SAFE, the code and the ability of keeping the code free and open sourced.

Do a search because there has been a lot of discussions about this.

Commercial software can use the API and have no need to pay anything. Its if they want to use that code closed source and not use the API they then pay the foundation (IIRC) and not MAIDSAFE as the Maidsafe foundation owns the patients and rights.

So its not a method to earn money but to protect Maidsafe and teh users from anyone claiming to own software used in the network.

Some other posts/topics that you might also find interesting


Thank You for the answers and links.

Unfortunately I was not able to find an explanation to the pyramid scheme, that is being used to lure the initial venture capitalists to give the nasty development loan, generally called “investment”, and that keeps on feeding them on the expense of the whole user base of the MadeSafe Network even after their initial loan has been paid back 100-fold. To emphasize the perspective here: would there really exist the IPv4 network that we have today, if everybody, who uses it, had to pay some x% to the initial founders of the Internet? I’m currently too stupid to see, how anybody with a long term perspective and at least a remotely sane financial discipline would want to create itself a dependency that has an everlasting permanent payment to the initial creators of the technology. (If such permanent private tax schemes are considered OK by the Brits and Americans, then there is absolutely no wonder that the UK and USA are so hierarchical and unequal societies.)

What regards to the idea that You offer patent licenses and tell that people are free to write their own MadeSafe network implementation or if that is too big of a burden, pay the MadeSafe investors some copyright license fees, then only a very short-sighted person would dismiss the history of the competition between the different Java implementations, where the de facto Java standard was the Sun/Oracle line of Java implementation. Oracle made it very clear, when its top management decided to throw out (formally: not throw out, but make practical participation impossible) the Apache Foundation from the Java development game. A citation from Apache Foundation blog (archival copy):

Oracle provided the EC (EC: stands for “Executive Commitee”) with a Java SE 7 specification request and license that are self-contradictory, severely restrict distribution of independent implementations of the spec, and most importantly, prohibit the distribution of independent open source implementations of the spec.

That is to say, there appears to be tricks, how to shake off the competing implementations and the Java case clearly demonstrates that it’s the developer of the most popular line of implementation that wins. Add to that the copyright related extortion that Oracle is pursuing against Google and, given how much the lawyers cost, hopes to win some day, then the the statement that the holder of initial patents and the main line of implementation “encourages” competing implementations, does not sound plausible.

Speaking of history, there’s also the case of Intel and AMD, where Intel required a second source to sell its chips and then, in actuality, made intentional technical restrictions to stop AMD from being “too successful”.

Thank You for Your answers and
thank You for reading my comments, but
really, whom do You expect to fool?

A hint: some people take their time for thinking and there’s a huge difference in technology planning and emotion based purchasing.

One more thing: may be according to British culture the MaidSafe pyramid scheme is actually genuinely fair and square. I do not know, how it is nowadays, I haven’t been to “London’s” Heathrow Airport for a long time (quotes because I think that it is relatively far from what I consider London, I’m not sure but may be at some point it wasn’t even within the city limits) , but what I do remember is that at my home town airport, Tallinn Airport, nobody had to pay for WiFi, just connect and use, but at Heathrow everybody had to pay despite the fact that the airport already collects its service fees from airlines.

So, may be I’m too harsh here due to my different culture. I’m an Estonian. But, I can say that those cultural barriers can become barriers in the Internet, the same way like it is useless to try to connect with somebody through Facebook, if that person, like me, for instance, does not actively use Facebook. I remember You wanting to create a GLOBAL and ALL-INCLUSIVE network, and currently, the British way works against You.

Thank You for reading my comment.

Pyramid scheme in bold letters, omg :grin:.

A pyramid scheme is a business model that recruits members via a promise of payments or services for enrolling others into the scheme, rather than supplying investments or sale of products or services.

This is far different from MaidSafe. They have some patents to make sure nobody else can obtain these to forbid them using their own technology. They also charge a 5% fee with Farming. If there’s $10 million Farmed each year they “make” 500.000 to keep coding. That ain’t much for a team of 15 to 20 people.

So feel free to fork this thing if you don’t like the current approach, all code is on GitHub.


And where do you get this from.

I am wondering where you get your information from since I have not and cannot see any such thing associated with Maidsafe of the SAFE network.

You will have to give extraordinary evidence for this extraordinary claim.[quote=“martin_vahi, post:3, topic:12952”]
What regards to the idea that You offer patent licenses and tell that people are free to write their own MadeSafe network implementation or if that is too big of a burden, pay the MadeSafe investors some copyright license fees,

Please avail yourself of the search feature of the forum and look for posts by user:dirvine concerning the patients.

I again repeat The patients are for the protection of the SAFE code and to ensure that the code can be used for FREE when used in open sourced projects ALSO anybody can write code that uses the SAFE API without any need to worry about the GPL license.

Your whole conclusions are based in fantasy and comparing it to everyone paying to use the current internet has no basis or anything to compare it with for SAFE. The underlying presumptions you use are simply false. Do some reading and you will learn.


Yes this is for paying wages to any developer in the world who works on the SAFE core code. And as SAFE grows will be people outside of Maidsafe for the most part.


Thank You all for the answers.

I think that I’ll stick to my claims. In my view the very fact that 5% of farming results are fed to the developers, ALWAYS, REGARDLESS OF HOW BIG THE MaidSafe GROWS, is essentially a pyramid scheme that has 2 layers: the founders at the top and the farmers at the lower layer, the 2. layer. I also emphasize that the comparison with the IPv4 Internet is perfectly to the point and according to my subjective preferences a solution, where everybody in the IPv4 Internet had to pay 5% or even less than 5% to the founders of the IPv4 internet, would_be/is UNFAIR. You might argue that the domain name registration fees are a form of taxation of all IPv4 users, but that is not really imposed on people, because they may create their own name server implementations and the Tor network offers free Tor domains to everybody.

So, all in all, I think I’ll consider the MaidSafe to be just another closed-source-like, distributed, storage solution that, unlike many others, has a luring GPLv3 twist with open source attached to it. For comparison: The RethinkDB was, at some point, also GPL, but they had a special exception for database drivers (at the end of the FAQ list, archival copy), so that the core database code, which was pure GPL, could be used by closed source software without paying the RethinkDB users a single dime. (It seems that they have moved to all-Apache-license later on.) The excuses that “freedom” requires the all-GPL-liciensing scheme, is demonstrated to be not applicable. Actually, I can say it with some authenticity, because my own crown jewels(although, I admit that they certainly look pretty dim to many people) are licensed under BSD and MIT licenses.

Thank You for reading my comments and
thank You for Your answers :smiley:

P.S. Over the years I have actually came to conclusion that proper, open source, base technology can never be developed as a fully paid, full-time, software development project. It’s possible to be PAID WELL, and have PERIODS OF FULL TIME PAYMENT, after all, that’s how the Apache foundation, Linux Foundation and GNU foundation and alike stay afloat, but they have multiple projects to even up the money flow. You, the MaidSafe developers, on the other hand, have only one project. So, no wonder You are in trouble. However, You do not seem to be learning “too well” from the history of software development projects either. At general school, primary school, secondary school, popular science, they only teach a shallow version of the history of wars, but anything related to any specific field, like math, medicine, physics, computer science, software project management, has to be learned by the specialists themselves, because the understanding of that history assumes the use of specialist knowledge. I as a person, who has never learned medicine, I would never understand the details of the thorough history of medicine, but that’s not an excuse for me, why I should not learn the history of my own field. In my view, the same applies to the MaidSafe developers.

Even if all the negative points you make are true then you cannot get past the point that 2 layers cannot be called a pyramid scheme.

So then every business system selling products out there is a pyramid scheme since they too have 2 layers. The retailers are the bottom layer and the wholesaler is the top layer.

Pyramid schemes are by definition made up of many layers (not 2) and each layer below pays out the layer above and all but the top layer are customers. What makes a pyramid scheme a pyramid scheme is that the upper layer is not paid out of productive work but the Money the lower layer PAYS into the scheme. In Safe Farming does not see the farmer put money into the system to pay anyone, but that the productive work done earns coins and that is split. Splitting earnings is cannot be regraded as pyramid scheme as its just the farmer’s productive work earnings split to pay the farmer and paying the developers (not Maidsafe) for ongoing development of the software.

Just because your opinion is to misapply a term (pyramid scheme) in a way that is against its definition is not just an opinion but deceptive behavior and makes me wonder your intentions in doing so.

Thank You for Your answer.

I’m not going to fall into a dumb flame war here, but I do say that businesses, when they sell something, also ADVERTISE THAT THEY ARE LOOKING FOR A SELL-BUY TRANSACTION. The MaidSafe advertisements are VERY DIFFERENT from that.

To avoid a dumb flame war, I keep that as my last post to this thread.

Thank You for reading my comments.

That is not the measure of a pyramid scheme.

A pyramid scheme

  • has many layers
  • no productive work is done This is work that produces some product be it goods, intellectual property, service etc.
  • lowest layer PAY into the scheme (one off or scheduled payment)
  • the layers above are PAID from the new layer added
  • New layers are added over time as needed to bring in more money (very important) to keep the scheme going

You failed to show anywhere Maidsafe are making a pyramid scheme or how the SAFE network fulfills the requirements to be called a pyramid scheme. No need for a flame war, just you show Maidsafe are doing those attributes of a pyramid scheme. Not a matter of opinion but facts.

To call Maidsafe a promoter of a pyramid scheme or SAFE being a pyramid scheme needs facts and not just calling it such and saying such, but show how it is a pyramid scheme.

This is a VERY SERIOUS extraordinary accusation you make, but fail to give any evidence of substance let alone extraordinary evidence for your extraordinary claim. This is why I want to have the facts so I too can decide or perhaps change my mind. Comparisons from non-facts don’t mean anything.