boilerplate text that hardware customers could start sticking into purchase orders
begin Rick Moen quotation of Thu, Dec 14, 2006 at 03:01:59PM -0800:
To very slightly misquote Douglas Adams, "To summarize the summary of a summary: mulish hardware companies are a problem."
Some if it is just plain corporate inertia -- sometimes it's easier for Management to put a developer to work trying to play catchup maintaining a proprietary driver than to come up with a GPL release policy.
In the early days of LCD panels, some vendors redefined a "good" panel as one with fewer than n bad pixels. Buyers defended themselves with "no bad pixels" terms in purchase orders.
A vendor sales person with a signed purchase order from you is a powerful tool for shaping vendor policy your way. You're talking someone who knows how to persuade, who knows who the players at the company are, who has an incentive to make things come out your way.
I'm thinking about drafting some boilerplate text that hardware customers could start sticking into purchase orders.
Using purchase orders to make purchases could be a useful VRM tool. When you use a business credit card to buy something, the only side that has a chance to throw legal requirements into the deal is the vendor side. Use a purchase order and your company's terms apply.
Two other posters on the same thread mention one organization and some other companies that are already using the PO to ensure that the vendor won't slip software with a one-sided license into a deal.