RMS interview

Alfred M. Szmidt ams at kemisten.nu
Tue Jun 25 19:56:09 UTC 2002

* Rainer Trusch writes:
> OfB: What are some of the advantages of Free Software for businesses?

> RMS: Free software means you control what your computer
> does.  Non-free software means someone else controls that, and to
> some extent controls you. Non-free software keeps users divided and
> individually helpless; free software empowers the users. All these
> reasons apply just as well to business users as to individuals.

> [...]

> I read this argument quite often and think it's pretty useless in
> a broader few. The vast majority of users can't programm and is still
> depending on someone else. On a business level you are more likely to
> have someone being capable to give you this control or you can hire
> someone. On a private level that doesn't work and you are one or
> another way "controlled" by someone else.

The vast majority of users can learn to program, it is just like
learning a new language.  If the program is proprietary, then the user
will never get the chance to ever see (so that s/he can learn) or
modify (also to learn) the source code, which are two of the four
freedoms.  If I can't read or write in a particular language, then I
can ask a friend (or a company) to do it, if I can read/write, then I
can do it my self.

Alfred M. Szmidt

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