This question is related, but it is different to this one: How can I forbid shady resale practices?
W1 can be used at no cost. A wants to use a business model for open-source software, such as professional services, branded merchandise, donations, crowdfunding to add new features, etc. (I will use the term "collateral business", for short)
Because company A has limited money (since the project novelty, it has poor notability), they cannot pay enough publishing services to increase the notability of W1 and hence it is difficult to reach the pretended collateral business conditions.
Meanwhile, the company P, a medium or big size one and more prominent, takes the source code of W1, makes modifications, mainly to adapt the software for P image, not in software functionality, and releases the "derivative" work on a different website W2.
Because the company P has more resources (money, workforce, etc), it is much easier to promote W2, reaching notability and eventually achieving the conditions for the collateral business model. P has also much more notability (as a trademark) at which W2 can be attached to.
At the end, W2 becomes a success, and W1 cannot. Even worse, given the W2 success, W1 appears to be a clone of W2, when it is actually the opposite.
Notice that company P has no violated any license, if they released the derivative source code under the conditions of the license (using the same license, giving credit to the original authors, etc.)
Even thought the new source code refers to the original authors, final users rarely inspect the license of the software they are using.
Could this scenario be considered unfair?
If so, how can it be avoided? The following are several options:
A. Company A can release W1 as closed-source at the beginning, and release it as FOSS when it has reached enough notability. It comes with another situations:
A.1. Would releasing W1 as closed-source affect its notability/success? I think it would not too much, because as I said, people tend to not read licenses in order to check whether the product is FOSS or not.
B. Adding The Commons Clause to W1. I have doubts, because the prominent opinion is that using it makes the entire software not FOSS. Also, it says about "selling the software", but in this case, neither A nor P pretend to sell the product, but using it for "collateral business".
C. Using other (or combinations of other) FOSS licenses. According to this answer:
Whether there is any other license you could've used for "The idea is that a seller would have to give full disclosure so that buyers would know which features of the software they are actually paying for, versus what they can already get for free.": Well, the MIT license already covers that. There's also the LGPL, BSD, Apache license and Mozilla Public License that do what you want.
But they also say about "selling" the software.
The questions are:
Can the "Collateral business" be (legally) considered part of "selling the software"? (if so, options B and C could apply)
Do you know a scenario that prevents the "predatory" scenario described above? It is preferable (but not mandatory) if it uses FOSS licenses (or a combination of them).