The red line represents new license sales of database and middleware revenue reported by Oracle. New license revenue is closely watched because it shows a vendor's ability to attract new customers and new business. As the red line shows, Oracle's core database and middleware business is facing significant challenges in attracting new business. A 0.5 percent decline in fiscal year 2009 could be considered an aberration, but following it up with a 22 percent decline in the first quarter of fiscal 2010 is alarming. Erosion is clearly demonstrated by the red line below.
As I previously mentioned, the erosion in core database revenue is not reason enough to think that Oracle will try to systematically damage MySQL's technology, future, or user base. The free to low-cost and easy-to-use database genie is out of the bottle. If MySQL were to become less viable after an Oracle acquisition, another database would take its place. It may take years, but it'll happen. Even if MySQL were to disappear tomorrow, the competition from open source and free closed source databases would continue to target Oracle's new license database and middleware revenue.
Should the acquisition be approved, it's in Oracle's interest to ensure that MySQL users remain MySQL users that Oracle can sell other parts of the Oracle portfolio into.
Follow me on Twitter: SavioRodrigues.
p.s.: I should state: "The postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies, or opinions."
This story, "Stallman correct about Oracle's database business erosion," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in open source at InfoWorld.com.