Job hunting and proprietary formats

Jeroen Dekkers jeroen at
Tue May 9 20:17:20 UTC 2006

At Tue, 09 May 2006 20:33:40 +0200,
Ottavio Caruso wrote:
> I'm pretty sure that most of you would refuse an email correspondence
> based on proprietary formats, e.g. MS-Word attachments.
> Some would even go to the point of deleting or bouncing such messages or
> reply in tune with RMS's 'We Can Put an End to Word Attachments'
> campaign :
> <>.
> But what if your professional career, and eventually your life, should
> depend on it?
> What if you are going to apply for a wonderful job, a job dealing with
> installing and maintaining Linux boxes, and the potential employer
> demand
> that the whole correspondence be managed in stupid word files?
> What if you are desperate and willing to compromise, you fire
> your shiny FOSS word processor and the file won't even load properly?

It depends a lot on the situation. It's a personal question you've to
answer. What I usually do it add the good and the bad things, and see
whether it's a net positive or negative. E.g. if your current job is
administrating shitty windows machines and you could get this job
administrating GNU/Linux machines, how does it make the world a better
place when you refuse to open that word document?

Remember that RMS also developed GNU on a proprietary Unix
system. That's because the goal of creating a Free operating system
was more important for him than avoiding the temporary use of non-free
software. You've to decide what your own goals and trade-offs are.

By the way, did you try to open it with I think its
import filters are a bit better than that of Abiword. Also ODF got
accepted as ISO standard last week, so if you recommend people to
change to other formats, than tell them to change to ODF and explain
that's an international open standard etc.

Jeroen Dekkers

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