Rod Johnson in Replies to Nonsense about Open Source says that Interface21 is the only legitimate company that can offer support for Spring.
...at least that's my interpretation...
Ben Speakmon (of SourceLabs) responds with Nonsense about Interface21.
Both articles are good reads. However, I think Ben has a good point:
One final point for Rod: why did you open source Spring at all? If you're so convinced that no one else can offer credible support for it, why not just make it proprietary?
Is Interface21 becoming the JBoss from two years ago? Will they one day make it difficult for companies to provide services around Spring like JBoss has? Fleury and Johnson will say that "professional open source" is the only way to have a truly successful project. While it may be working well for them, I tend to like DHH's stance on Rails a bit more:
I believe a Rails Inc consisting of a large group of core committers would have an unfair advantage in the training and consulting space - easily siphoning off all the best juice and leaving little for anything else. There are plenty of examples in our industry of that happening around open source tools.
It's much more satisfying to see a broader pool of companies all competing on a level playing field.
Disclaimer: In the past, I've provided training and consulting around Spring - in addition to writing a book about it. Interface21 has never done anything to discourage people from using my services. At least they haven't done anything that I know of.