Oracle continues confusing open source community, gives OpenOffice to Apache

Way back in April we wrote about how Oracle handed the OpenOffice.org development back to the community having taken control of the open-source document editing suite following its acquisition of Sun.

However, amid the debacle that followed the purchase and many questionable moves by the Oracle community management people, there wasn’t much of an OpenOffice.org organisation for it to hand back to, as they had all moved over to the non-Oracle controlled fork LibreOffice (which shipped as the default with the Ubuntu 11.04 release in the same month).

Oracle have now taken the somewhat inexplicable step of contributing the OpenOffice.org code to the Apache Software Foundation. The donation will see OpenOffice.org setup as an open-source project at the “incubator” level – a stage which means the foundation will analyse support for the project before it is fully supported as an Apache project.

The LibreOffice team are unsure on the release of the code. In a statement on their website, the foundation writes “we welcome Oracle’s donation of code that has previously been proprietary to the Apache Software Foundation”.

“The Document Foundation would welcome the reuniting of the OpenOffice.org and LibreOffice projects into a single community of equals in the wake of the departure of Oracle. The step Oracle has taken today was no doubt taken in good faith, but does not appear to directly achieve this goal.”

“Thus, the event is neutral for The Document Foundation.”

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