In a rather short statement ? as we are recently used to in regard to Oracle – the software outfit announced on Friday to discontinue the commerial version of Open Office. They also want to move OpenOffice.org to a "purely community-based open source project".
Oracle remained silent about the interesting bits of the move. They didn’t disclose the reason for the decision other than their sudden change of heart regarding which development model is best suited for OpenOffice.org. Also they didn’t give an explanation for the discontinuation of the commercial version. If recent announcements of the company are any indication though, it might be because of lack of sales and profitability. Furthermore it
wasn’t specified whether Oracle will transfer ownership of the OpenOffice.org brand to an open source organization.
In the last paragraph of their release, they outline their lengthy commitment to certain open source porjects, what can only be regarded as a half-hearted statement. The specifically tout Linux and MySQL, though the latter has only been obtained through the acquisition of Sun Microsystems finalized in 2010. Your definition of "long history" may vary.
Welcome to OpenOffice.org – A matter of the past?
Repeatedly Oracle got bad reports about their cooperation with open source organizations. This culminated in the
OpenOffice.org fork LibreOffice by the Document Foundation in September 2010 and the withdrawal of the Apache Foundation of the Java Executive Comittee overseeing the development of the Java programming language in December 2010.
As for the future of the project it remains to be seen, whether the Document Foundation prefers to stick with their new name LibreOffice for the piece of software. From a user point of view, not much has changed, apart from the name tag. LibreOffice already got support from certain governments requiring documents to be stored in the Open Document Format (ODF). Ultimately one of the two will have to go, but which one is unclear at the
moment. Though as some Linux distributions already changed over to LibreOffice, they will possibly stick with that.