Primer is based on Drupal 9, which is distributed under GNU General Public License, version 2 or later (GPL). Primer’s code is released under the same license as a result of that.
This has some important practical implications. Upon acquiring a Primer instance you will get access to the entire codebase of your site. All the freedoms and responsibilities that are granted to you by the GPL license apply as well (right to study the code, modify, redistribute, ...).
You are also free to choose where and how you are going to host your website. Similarly, in case of need for any special customizations, you are free to decide how and in collaboration with whom you are going to achieve your goals.
That said, we do have a preferred hosting partner and we will generally ask you to use it in order to use our support. This is done solely to make your and our life easier and it is the only way for us to maintain the desired quality of service at a competitive price.
We also can only provide guarantees and support for customizations or modifications that were done by our team.
But how are you charging for free software? I heard that it is supposed to be free!
Free software is generally not about the price but about freedoms. By acquiring Primer you get all the freedoms that are granted to you by the GPL license. However, this does not mean that we’re required to distribute it for free.
While any Primer code must use GPL this isn’t the case for other deliverables that come with it. We keep the copyright and intellectual property related to those to ourselves. By acquiring a Primer instance you get access to all the deliverables to freely use and/or modify them in context of that instance. If you or anyone else wishes to use them on another production instance then we ask you to pay the fee.
What do I get for my money?
We invested all our experience, expertise and months of hard work into Primer’s development. The result is a carefully architected and designed product that will save you a lot of time and money when building your next web project by shipping with optimal default configuration, many improvements in the content creation UX area, base theme that allows you to easily generate your customized website design, … By paying the flat fee you get all that and 16 hours of pre-release support and development of your Primer instance.
Additional to the one time fee we also ask you to pay the recurring monthly fee. This will generally cover the hosting, get you regular updates and improvements of Primer and give you access to our support and know how.
You can decide to cancel the support contract at any time. In that case you will lose access to the services that the contract provides (hosting, updates, support, ...), but you will keep the possession of your Primer instance without any restrictions.
By purchasing Primer you support further development of free software
Primer is developed and maintained by one of the most active corporate Drupal contributor. We also employ few of the most prolific individual contributors. The work that we did as part of the Primer development directly resulted 100s of hours being invested into Drupal core and various contributed modules (such as Paragraphs, Paragraphs collection, Entity Browser, ...).
Income that comes from Primer instances allows us to continue with our contributions. This means that Primer will not only get you a great website for a good price, but you will also support the good cause.