• Ryan LeFevreRyan LeFevre, 8 years ago (edited 8 years ago )

    Not to speak for Andrew, but from a general point of view... open-sourcing commercial/revenue-generating websites is an incredibly risky business. Running DN costs money, and of course it would be nice to turn a profit to either put back into the business or funnel into another venture. When you open-source something, it's like fully opening the kimono. There is no more secret sauce that makes the site special. By handing the entire platform to anyone who wants to build a ___ News offshoot, you eventually water down your audience and spread them across many sites, which will detract from eyes on DN.

    As for your examples... Hacker News is not revenue generating, as far as I know. Y Combinator makes plenty of money from investments, so they can probably fit the bill for HN pretty easily. Reddit is already designed such that it's a meta-community, so creating a reddit clone wouldn't have much appeal since you can just create a new sub-reddit for whatever topic you're interested in.

    Believe me, I am a huge advocate of open-source software, but I think DN is handling it the right way so far. Open-sourcing small parts of the site as separate libraries is a great way to give back to the community without sacrificing the business in teh process.

    2 points