Open source / Vendor lock-in

To cut to the chase, I would feel much better about basing my full-stack framework on Fauna if it was open source. Is there any chance that Fauna could take up a license that allows for it to be profitable without being closed source?

Along the same vein, could Fauna adopt a license that alleviates its need to enforce vendor lock-in to its proprietary cloud platform?

I expect a thoughtful response. Thanks.

I don’t disagree that open source is better, but my thinking is that if Fauna ever did something egregious or raised their prices too much, it’s just a doc store, so it’s easy enough to move to Mongo or similar (unless you rely on doc versioning which Mongo doesn’t have AFAIK).

Keep in mind that we aren’t building standalone software, we are building an entire platform that isn’t targeted at self-hosting, open source won’t alleviate these problems. FaunaDB is solving operational complexity for you which is quite different from creating something for you to run yourself.

You could compare it to open-sourcing another SaaS platform, or open-sourcing DynamoDB or Spanner. There are similar questions for those to be found. And there are articles and opinions to be found on whether open-source in such a market is viable.

I can’t give you any information on what our opinion is though since that decision happened long before I arrived. But maybe, you are lucky and someone else jumps in. The question is though, why would you feel better about it? If it’s open-source it doesn’t give you any other guarantee than that you could look at the code.


Beyond independent auditing, open source allows the option of deploying Fauna servers yourself, which puts pressure on Fauna to keep their pricing model at acceptable levels. I’m most afraid of having my application tightly coupled to Fauna only to later be price gouged. Perhaps there are other ways of alleviating that fear? I guess you could say that Fauna is discouraged from price gouging, since that would hurt their reputation and make it harder to acquire new customers. So as long as Fauna doesn’t have market dominance, it can be trusted.

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