In reporting this story about how AWS wields its power in the cloud computing world, I found that time and again Amazon lifted open source turned it into a paid service and ended up making more money than the company behind the technology. https://t.co/S887cknzVX 1/x— Daisuke Wakabayashi (@daiwaka) December 15, 2019
We also found that AWS takes steps to give a leg-up to its own services. Basically, AWS services are easier on use on AWS than third-party ones. It also prominently promotes its own services over others on AWS and applies discounts in ways to advantage its own products 2/x— Daisuke Wakabayashi (@daiwaka) December 15, 2019
Even though some companies view AWS' actions as anticompetitive (including a group of software CEOs who considered bringing a complaint), many startups feel like they have no choice but to work with Amazon because of its reach with customers. 3/x— Daisuke Wakabayashi (@daiwaka) December 15, 2019
AWS is a game-changing product — as significant, perhaps, as the smartphone — but there are questions about the tactics it has taken to cement and extend its dominance in that world. It is an arms race that only a few companies have the resources to participate in 4/x— Daisuke Wakabayashi (@daiwaka) December 15, 2019
As regulators look at the antitrust case for Amazon's shopping site, I think many of the same issues apply to AWS. Third parties say once AWS becomes a direct competitor, it's no longer a neutral party. 5/x— Daisuke Wakabayashi (@daiwaka) December 15, 2019
This is the second part of our series on the reach and influence of Amazon. The first one is a must-read about how Amazon's might can be felt in one American city — Baltimore. By the great @ScottShaneNYT https://t.co/Ug8EhaEJrw FIN— Daisuke Wakabayashi (@daiwaka) December 15, 2019
In 1976 our company was asked by a major card and gift company to become a preferred supplier. We turned then down. We had been selling to them for over 4 years. They suddenly stopped buying, then copied most of our original product line & undersold us. So, this is not new.— J. L. Hardy (@JLHardy1) December 15, 2019
If they didn't violate the Open Source licence, I see nothing wrong with that. Designing a technology is one thing, deploying it at scale is another. The second may well be more profitable than the first.— Roman Werpachowski (@RWerpachowski) December 15, 2019
You should investigate more deeply the notion that AWS saves money. A lot of customers (and journalists) blindly accept this idea. In many cases, it is much more expensive, but heavily funded companies use it anyway. https://t.co/jEHkAnzhyx— T-pop (@terrypopolus) December 15, 2019
It's rich to see CloudFlare complaining😆Their core product's purpose-designed to create walled gardens of data, only accessible to big players (Google notably), while speciously calling it "protection from attacks." They keep out start-ups (in part by purposely blocking AWS IPs)— pete bray 🍄 (@petebray) December 15, 2019
e.g., what startups can bypass their "ML" rules (probably rules-based blocks of AWS IPs) except established players like Google? Try to build Googlebot today? Impossible due to anti-startup CloudFlare.— pete bray 🍄 (@petebray) December 15, 2019
One fundamental distinction among open source companies that no one talks about: workflow companies vs hosting companies.— Sam Bhagwat (@calcsam) December 15, 2019
Open source hosting companies will inevitably end up competing with AWS, leading to licensing spats, forks, AWS distros, etc.
Workflow companies will not. https://t.co/1FfFlCwA8L
Open source hosting companies are basically all the ones mentioned in this article: Confluent, Mongo, Elastic, etc.— Sam Bhagwat (@calcsam) December 15, 2019
Cost and pricing structure is similar to AWS’s: compute and storage.
After they lose enough deals to AWS they experiment with alt licensing, talk antitrust etc
Open source workflow companies don’t compete w/ AWS & are thus missing from article: @github, @HashiCorp, @MuleSoft, @gatsbyjs— Sam Bhagwat (@calcsam) December 15, 2019
These companies’ value is typically in user collaboration, integrations, etc.
Nobody thinks of @github as “Git hosting.” It’s where devs collaborate.
I don’t have a strong opinion on whether being a workflow vs a hosting company is:— Sam Bhagwat (@calcsam) December 15, 2019
– primarily something you can decide as a company, or whether it’s
– primarily determined by the shape of the open source project.
I also don’t have a strong opinion on which is “better”— Sam Bhagwat (@calcsam) December 15, 2019
Hosting companies run into competition with AWS later, but fit better into well-defined budget categories early@elastic, @confluentinc, @MongoDB are all multi-$B companies even w/ AWS making 2-3x running their OSS code.
Another way of thinking about this is that one of the things making open source so easy to adopt is the cloud.— Sam Bhagwat (@calcsam) December 15, 2019
And AWS is for all intents and purposes the cloud.
So this is really an argument over the size of the “Amazon tax”https://t.co/Phm5dL1GKK
Consider eg Google and Yelp.— Sam Bhagwat (@calcsam) December 15, 2019
Yelp is built completely and irrevocably on top of Google (via eg SEO). Google continues to try to increase its margins via adding more paid search, enhancing Maps, etc
This locks the companies in perpetual, eternal conflict.
Bringing it back around: no one has written a playbook for open-source hosting companies escaping conflict with AWS — yet.— Sam Bhagwat (@calcsam) December 15, 2019
And currently discussion — antitrust, re-licensing — is around competing better.
Will this change? And if so, when? I’m really curious to see.