press release critique

josX joshb at
Wed May 2 19:26:12 UTC 2001

> Hi everybody,

> I want to explain my critique why I think that -- in my
> view -- FSFE differs from FSF, and this is bad.
Agree 100%

Wavering away from RMS mostly results in chaos, does it not ;-) ?

At least, I agree so much with him, it would be best from my POV
to follow in his mighty footsteps, at least for the start... and
yes I can think very good for myself, I just happen to get to the
same conclusions every time I do :-).

Actually I'm a bit more extreme: it should be free as in speech
and it should be free as in beer too. Manny people don't have money,
so making it free as in beer is the only way to be shure it is
free as in speech too (so everybody can have it, use it, be enjoyed
by it.... not only those with too much money to blow).

And isn't the best part of it giving the stuff away? If we are
going to make money with it, or support that notion... what is the
difference between this bisnis, and standard bisnis... and how long
is the whole thing going to hold if money gets involved. Let me tell
you in advance: very, very, very short indeed. Sorry.

This money-thing is a trojan horse. Don't let it in, or it will make
Linux just another bisnis-model with exploitation and everything that
entails, or it will make suits out of the old hackers.... remember
what happened to the hippies of the sixties? Now they ride BMW with
a boring tie and try to make as much money as possible.

Maybe we can make the FSFE more european by being more confrontational
(in philosophy) and less capitalistic, USA is the land of the capitalists,
we should not outdo them there I think.

> The sense of copyleft is to keep and increase the
> freedom using software. The way to do this is to exclude
> the possibility of making software scarce (freedom is
> inherited). These principles are introduced and explained
> in GNU Manifesto.

> GPL says that it is allowed to take a fee for distributing
> free software, however this is only a means to balance some
> expenditure -- not the goal!

> Press release about founding of the FSFE says that
> free software has the goal to make money with it. 
If that is what it says, I am afraid I would have to disassociate 
myself :(. No kidding (not that you should mind though).

>                                                   This
> is exactly the opposite of the spirit of GPL and GNU
> Manifesto! This is because making money presuppose
> making things scarce. If you have free software which
> is inherently not scarce, you have to make other things
> around free software scarce in order to be able to sell
> free software or the things around. And this is exactly what
> Eric Raymond in his propaganda says (see the magic cauldron:

> Free software and freedom in general cannot survive on an
> island. All other things around free software have to be
> free as far as possible. Therefore we have a special license
> for documentation (FDL) etc. Other examples are support -
> we help people to use free software, however no for the
> purpose of making money!

> A fee is ok, but "making money" in Raymond style is against
> the spirit of GNU Manifesto.

Let's go a step further: giving away for free is what makes it
so much fun to do. It makes you happy to give (wasn't "sharing
with your friends" what RMS called his `golden rule', that what
(face it) was the basis of it all (in it's current form)?

Isn't it great to work for hours and then just put it on the
web and let everybody enjoy it?!!!
Maybe you can't earn your living with it... but, when was that
the goal, the goal was having fun, not make a coal-mine out of
it so we can live from it, devoid of the pleasure of making it
and giving it away.

Gee, this is the whole BASIS of it all.
No point in arguing the basis.

> Last point is the slogan "equal chances for people
> and economy" on the web site. I can't understand the
> message. Equal chances between what and what? Between people
> and people?  Between economy and economy? Between people and
> economy? The first is ok (but not really good: equal chances
> is not the same as freedom). The second doesn't make sense
> (economy is one 'entity' so there is no 'between'). And the
> third is crazy, because people never have same chances as
> 'economy'.

> Increasing freedom for people always implies reducing the
> opportunity for economy to make things scarce. Freedom finds
> its borders where the freedom of others is touched. Making
> things artificially scarce by companies touches freedom
> of the people. This has clearly explained by RMS in GNU
> Manifesto.

> As RMS said: We should more talk about freedom. And not of
> making money, I add.
> Ciao, Stefan

I add too, and on top of that: "freedom as in speach and as in beer".

What is it going to be: are we going up, or are we going to go

bye Jos

This is not something I think up just now, it troubled me for longer
already. I just think this is pretty serious, and could in the long
run proove to be the end of us.

What is this core team doing.... is this some kind of Trojan operation
or something??

It is COMPLETELY against everything if it says that "free software is
about making money".

It is /NOT/. It is about giving away and have fun at it. At least that
is what I do, and I'm shure most of the projects have the same feel to
them. From all for all, or something...

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