FAQ 1.2 Who supports Perl? Who develops it? Why is it free?



This is an excerpt from the latest version perlfaq1.pod, which
comes with the standard Perl distribution. These postings aim to
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to review and update the answers. The latest version of the complete
perlfaq is at http://faq.perl.org .

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1.2: Who supports Perl? Who develops it? Why is it free?

The original culture of the pre-populist Internet and the deeply-held
beliefs of Perl's author, Larry Wall, gave rise to the free and open
distribution policy of perl. Perl is supported by its users. The core,
the standard Perl library, the optional modules, and the documentation
you're reading now were all written by volunteers. See the personal note
at the end of the README file in the perl source distribution for more
details. See perlhist (new as of 5.005) for Perl's milestone releases.

In particular, the core development team (known as the Perl Porters) are
a rag-tag band of highly altruistic individuals committed to producing
better software for free than you could hope to purchase for money. You
may snoop on pending developments via the archives at
http://www.xray.mpe.mpg.de/mailing-lists/perl5-porters/ and
http://archive.develooper.com/perl5-porters@xxxxxxxx/ or the news
gateway nntp://nntp.perl.org/perl.perl5.porters or its web interface at
http://nntp.perl.org/group/perl.perl5.porters , or read the faq at
http://dev.perl.org/perl5/docs/p5p-faq.html , or you can subscribe to
the mailing list by sending perl5-porters-subscribe@xxxxxxxx a
subscription request (an empty message with no subject is fine).

While the GNU project includes Perl in its distributions, there's no
such thing as "GNU Perl". Perl is not produced nor maintained by the
Free Software Foundation. Perl's licensing terms are also more open than
GNU software's tend to be.

You can get commercial support of Perl if you wish, although for most
users the informal support will more than suffice. See the answer to
"Where can I buy a commercial version of perl?" for more information.



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