Re: GPL Question re upcoming plugin release
…thought about selling our plugin and making some cash per user download but the main inhbiting factor for us was that we would be limiting it’s reach by it not being available in the WordPress repository.
I believe it is important to give back to the community–especially if you directly profit from using any of the WP ecosystem products. That is why many people prescribe the freemium model where you offer a standard version of your plugin for free (this is the one you host on the WP repo) and then offer your premium version on your on site or another hosted site.
It is important, in my opinion, to offer real value in the standard version, not just fluff that whet people’s appetite and then makes them trade up to the “real” plugin. With regard to this point, along with additional functionality, one of the differentiating factors between your standard and premium versions could be support level. You offer basic support for the standard version and more robust support for you premium version. It is up to you to decide what standard and robsut support actually means.
Again, in my opinion and the opinion of many others in our community, themes and plugins must be GPLed. There are certain exceptions like the few I outlined in my first post in this thread. Another exception is if you call a propritary algorithm hosted on a remote server via an API–much like the Akismet service’s code is not GPLed. However, I am not a software attorney (or any other type of attorney for that matter), so if you do want to sell non-GPLed themes or plugins for use with WordPress, I suggest you contact one before doing so.
Since a lot has been written about the GPL issue, I suggest searching the Web for more details if you’re interested.