We need you.
With Qabel, we want to build a cryptography platform which any services can run on decentrally and which encrypts everything end-to-end in order to do something to combat mass surveillance at the press of a button. Furthermore, we want the minimum possible amount of metadata to result, since service providers (Qabel GmbH, other providers) fundamentally have to be seen as compromised and thus bad. In addition, we want it to be possible for this platform to be used, expanded, modified and offered by everyone except the military and intelligence services.
The QaPL (Qabel Public License), developed especially for Qabel, illustrates our approach. We want to have a good, decentralised, freely usable and accessible cryptography platform for any communication service, which is not misused to the detriment of others. That's why our license explicitly prohibits use by, for example, the military, intelligence services and anyone who wants to harm other people. In addition, we want Qabel to be able to be consistently developed, maintained and improved. The people who feel responsible for this software and put all of their time, skills and passion into it must be able to make a living from it. For this reason, we want a slice of the pie if other people are using Qabel to earn money or for commercial purposes. Non-commercial use is and will remain free of charge. In the future, only storage space beyond 2 GB will cost something.
As a result of these limitations, Qabel is not "open source" in the sense of the OSI, nor is it "free software" in terms of the FSF. We thus talk about "published source" code. Although we think it is a shame that words like "open" and "free" cannot actually be used so "openly" and "freely", we respect the current language on this point for the purposes of clearer communication.
Of course, open source developers can explicitly feel free, here, to contribute ideas, write code and colonise the Qabel world, which was designed as an ecosystem.
We are very open to suggestions and discussions of all type, including with regard to the license. We are currently searching for a third way here. No more and no less. We are certainly not the first to do so – but this way seems promising to us. And someone has to try it.
On more small note: Please also try Qabel on Linux and MacOS and provide us with feedback. We want to provide official releases for both platforms as soon as possible. We are also urgently in need of more people with technical experience who can test the server components.