It is fitting that the most powerful piece of advice to keep in mind when preparing to negotiate your new license agreement with Oracle is itself most commonly associated with ancient Greece’s Socrates. It is the aphorism “know thyself.” I would also add an additional element: “control thyself.”
This is not to suggest that one needs the services of a PhD in philosophy to wrangle your Oracle relationship; far from it. Rather there are very concrete considerations founded on answering some hard-nosed questions about how your business operates and understanding the nature of an Oracle contract.
Let’s begin by setting the record straight. Despite the nerve-wracking nature of the stories that circulate about companies being audited and found to be out of compliance or having received breach of contract notices from Oracle, the reality is that with effective guidance these scenarios are almost always avoidable. Oracle isn’t the one that violates a license; you are. If you allow willy nilly downloads and use of software, you are allowing anyone to spend a huge amount of money without realizing it.