Just to be clear, I'm not on squarespace.com forums complaining about how they run their business. Open Source implies and comes from a place where people discuss ethics and the right and wrong of what should and show not be. That rubs me the wrong way, because once you start down the road of legally binding other people with licenses based upon your visions of ethical behavior (the gpl), you open yourself up to endless scrutiny of your own commercial activities.
I respect your desire to be done with the conversation. I'm super tired of it myself. As a person that is trying to make a living in the web space, that values the independent lifestyle, for myself and for others. I think having source code that you can base your work on provides great opportunity to participate in the market and not have to move to a regimented corporate lifestyle.
However, that is what I believe the primary benefit of source is, that it allows people who facilitate solutions to be able to modify those to meet the needs of customers. I don't think free and open are equal concepts. Free devalues things that have value and at is core is lie, if something has value someone else paid for it even though you might have consumed it without paying. In most circumstances someone pretends to give you something for free while charging you a price for something else that also pays for the free thing.
In WordPress free means that the person receiving it is just completely devaluing your contribution if they don't donate. I find the idea that encouraging people to devalue their own work and the work of others to be weird and not in any way a moral position to take.
I want to be convince otherwise, because I like the idea of finding the moral high ground and occupying it. So when I see people moralizing I want one of them to be without reproach so I have something to follow. And it breaks my brain when I feel like people are falling short.
To be clear, your opinion on the appropriate place to market your plugin is not necessarily wrong in my opinion. I just think that if there is a right and wrong way to do it, we need to bake the standards into core and provide hooks to encourage that it is done in the right way. Instead of having everyone do it haphazardly because it is really not supported at all.
I have a plugin that has some 1500+ downloads. And I'm considering updating it to include some more marketing for me. I want to find the "right" way to do that, and since so many others are in the same position doesn't it make sense to put in place some physical code standards rather than just having track down the 1000 different ways people are addressing that problem and risk getting bad reviews because you picked the wrong answer.
So I'm on board that it should be brought up, I just smelled an uncivil tone which I don't response well to. Especially when I haven't had much sleep.
Consider the idea for a minute that maybe there should be a support status readout. So for free plugins, you could go an donate a requested amount which entitles you to some offered support. So when you go into your plugin list you can see which plugins you have support for and which you don't with the opportunity to jump to the donation page and enable the support flag.
That way it isn't a paid plugin but you are able to keep track of support. So when you go to update your plugins you can be clear which ones you can update with an assurance that if it breaks you have a way to request a fix from the source.
Again, you can clearly make and sell stuff yourself, but the real value is being able to get exposure to the millions of wordpress.org sites. So the good opportunities to support the development community are all in the hands of the core team. The farther away you push the call to action to support plugin developers, the more out of site out of mind it is.
In the long run, finding a middle ground is only going to help WordPress by keeping developers away from other cms platforms. Every developer that stays away from other solutions is another coin in the pocket of Matt Mullinweg because of the Halo affect of people signing up for and using WordPress.com. And that is biggest argument for a marketplace run by WordPress.com.