osCommerce, Open Source and how to get to grips with Commercialism

By | February 1, 2013

osCommerce is not and never has been a “no money” entity. Don’t believe me? Let’s look at the facts;

1. osCommerce is supported by community sponsors. They pay for that pleasure.
2. osCommerce is supported by corporate sponsors. They pay for that pleasure.

Open Source is all about “freedom”, not “free”.

1. A freedom given to you is the freedom to do what you like with osCommerce
2. That freedom is also given to me as a developer

Never forget that we all have the same freedoms as each other.

Here’s a typical comment of the sort that I receive now and then, from “Joe Average” shopowners;

Its people like you that make money from a free product

OK. That is a freedom granted to me. My response to this type of comment is always;

Is your shop running on osCommerce making you money?

There is never a response to this, as with those 9 words I have rendered that entire argument null and void. Here’s another typical comment;

Whats not in your interest is to have a loaded osCommerce option as you would loose part of your income.

Let’s look at Magento which (for this blog post) consider as “osCommerce on Steroids” – by this I mean it has a lot of things built in to the admin section (loaded in other words, with goodies). What this means is that if the Joe Average shopowner wants to do something that exists as a “goodie” it’s very simple, he clicks a button…and it’s all working. If he wants to do something out of the ordinary, it’s impossible – he/she is forced to use a developer. So, on the face of it, I might lose business, but I believe that I would gain a lot more than I lose.

Me choose…

For me, Open Source is also all about CHOICE. The choice to use it, the choice to amend the code oneself, the choice to contract a developer to make code changes. Once choice gets taken away, the product is in trouble.

The more bloat you introduce to osCommerce, the less freedom one has in its use. I don’t know why some people find that concept hard to grasp and I for one find that quite sad.

You can CHOOSE to use osCommerce. You have that FREEDOM.
Remember this: so does the next man.


The next time you feel hindered by Open Source, think about a choice you have: the freedom to find a new Open Source product to use.

2 thoughts on “osCommerce, Open Source and how to get to grips with Commercialism

  1. thatsoftwareguy

    These people who are so offended by the mention of filthy lucre – is everything in their osCommerce based store free? If so I’d like two of each!

  2. oscbooks

    Exactly so. The latest person who sent this kind of comment, has not yet answered the same question.

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