Hello, thank you for offering this explanation. I’ve been following Obsidian for a while and keep coming back to consider it against a few of my other favourite similar applications (Zim, Zettlr, and Trilium). Obsidian is really impressive and I like it’s roadmap. I’d like to support its continued development by paying for one of the options you provide but what stops me from following-through with that, every time, is the fact that it’s not free and open source software.
First point on safety seems a fair comment but it’s also true of closed, proprietary software. This isn’t an argument against FOSS.
Second point also seems fair but not an argument against FOSS because if you release your code as FOSS it doesn’t mean you’re required to take anyone’s potential improvements. But you do give yourselves the option of taking them if you want to. This also is true for the fourth point. You may not want to put the effort into managing a vibrant FOSS project but that’s your choice, it’s not an argument against making the code FOSS. Proprietary software doesn’t have that option at all.
Third point, true FOSS projects may not last forever, nor will proprietary, closed-source ones. This isn’t an argument against FOSS, it’s just a fact of anything not managed well. From what I see of the pricing options in your business model, having your code released under a FOSS licence would make no difference to how you make money. If your business is sustainable now (or heading in that direction), while you currently give your software away for free then there is no change.
However, a benefit to making it FOSS that you will never be able to get any other way is that you’re committing to your users that you respect them. You’re telling us that you respect the fact that we have certain freedoms about what we do with the software we use on our computers. Without that sort of commitment, even if I personally never use the code or see anyone else contribute improvements to it, I cannot in good conscience pay to support your organization.
I hope you will take my points as positive criticism. I truly believe you have a great applicaton and it seems like a good business model. It just strikes me that you haven’t made any actual arguments against licensing the software as FOSS but have some conceptions that are skewing a bit from what would actually be the case and thus preventing a lot of additional support (as some of the other comments here suggest).
Thank you for listening/reading and hopefully reconsidering.