Google's marketing department no doubt popped the champagne corks following the massive media coverage and largely positive reaction to Android. OK, so it wasn't actually a phone, but who cares? Slowly, though, criticism is being heard over Google's decision to make Android available under an Apache Software Foundation (ASF) …
Google and Open Source
It is a wise and well thought out choice that Google went with the Apache license instead of the GNU Public Virus. Despite what you might have heard from the Stallman lackeys, the GPL is in fact one of the most restrictive software licenses there is, on par with commercial licenses. There are far less restrictive open source licenses like Apache, MIT, Berkeley and others that permit and encourage active community participation and development without crippling the ability for commercial entities to release proprietary products that use the open source product.
I also wish to refute your statement that Google is not very involved with open source projects. (Apologies for the paraphrasing, El Reg's comment system doesn't provide context for me by default.)
Google have contributed extensively to the open source development community for many years. http://code.google.com/opensource/ is their own central "open source news" site, which probably doesn't even discuss the company's direct contributions (by way of code) to Linux, Firefox, MySQL and many many other open source projects.
Google is a commercial entity with the intent of making a profit. The fact that they continue to do so while actually providing so much useful product is respectable.
Google is toxic to open source community
Google is trying to poison the well, trying to steal the fruits of the GPL community, and merchandise them under a different license. They are destroying their rleationship with the developer community with what they're doing - no one I know cares about how they're going to package up selling me ads on their phone. It's like they think they're going to pull a fast one... but they're not fooling anyone.
To Chris Woods: I'm one of those Stallman lackies and I take offence at your biased assessment of the GPL's attempt to protect the freedoms of the original developers and their users. Just because a licence cares about end users doesn't make it bad, nor is it horrible because it deals with the inevitable political issues that humans love to embroil themselves in. As a programmer I don't like or want my hard work used against me, if it's GPL I always get the option of incorporating changes or benefits which could have cause my project problems if a company was immoral enough.
I don't believe for a second that proprietary software is equivocal to the GPL and by saying such a ridicules thing you undermine your credibility.
Google on the other hand knows full well what it's doing, it could very easily at any point take anyone else's code medications and sell them to a TelCo to lock down the users. Shrewd but you don't fool me. *tin foil hats are us regular shopper*
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