Arduino Experimenters Kit fiasco in the Australian Market

There was a vlog posted (below) by Jonathon Oxer over at Freetronics earlier this week and it’s cause a bit of an uproar in the open-source community in Australia.

Essentially what has happened is that Jaycar (who is a reseller for Freetronics) has taken the Arduino Experimentater’s Kit that is produced by Freetronics, and made a very (very!) similar version. In the vlog, Jon actually walks through how much effort Jaycar put into replicating his Freetronics kit, explaining how the packaging, components and manual are almost direct copies of his own product. A minority are making claims that the entire situation is a non-issue, everyone knows that Arduino itself is an open-source platform and they encourage people to build upon their ideas and create innovative technology using their tools. So really, it’s the nature of open-source products to be copied, to an extent. Well, that’s their opinion.

Take a look at the side-by-side:

Inline with Jon’s perspective, it would seem the vast majority of YouTube comments suggest Jaycar have gone way past deriving their work from Jon’s product, they completely stole the kit! Jon has been a massive part of the Australian maker community and it’s a true shame to see him on YouTube expressing his sadness toward the situation. He posted another video later this week that has a bit more of story behind the entire situation, it’s definitely worth a watch too.

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