have browser, will travel

Dan Gillmor, on the Merc: "By giving away its Internet Explorer and effectively killing Netscape, it has achieved a dominance in Internet software."

Dave Winer, on Scripting News: "Wait a minute. Wasn't Netscape free too? I know they said it wasn't free, but couldn't you download the browser from Netscape's website, for free? Dan talks about Microsoft apologists in his piece, is Dan being a Netscape apologist?"

Netscape Navigator was NOT free. If a company wanted to use Netscape's products they had to pay for them. I worked at Shell Canada when they made Internet access available to their employees from their workstations... if I remember correctly the Royal Dutch Shell Group negotiated a world-wide contract with Netscape for Navigator licenses... it was probably on the order of 100's of thousands of licenses they paid for.

I used Netscape at my home business (since IE wasn't around in 1995.) Because I never use unlicensed software, I too bought a license for Netscape Navigator for my home computer.

The last place I worked at got their Netscape software for free because they were considered an educational organization. If they weren't considered educational, they would have had to buy copies for every desk as well.

Written on January 16, 2000