Free Software Evangelism, revisited

Steven steffo at
Fri May 26 17:37:48 UTC 2006

Your previous question seems to be based on the assumption that 'for profit'
and 'for believe' are mutual exclusive. I think they are not. I believe in
Free Software and still am looking for ways to earn money, because I need
to. If I could earn money by 'selling' Free Software I would consider it a
good thing, since I could combine something I need to do with something I
want to do. But if I would be 'selling' Free Software - for whatever reason
- and do not believe in or care for the philosophy of Free Software then I
would be a fake, no evangelist.

In your example about the hero, I think he is by this definition "hero:the
principal character in a play or movie or novel or poem"  :) But by this
definition: "hero:man distinguished by exceptional courage and nobility and
strength" I think there is not enough information in the example to tell.

Also note that for the person falling it makes no difference. The result is
the same. This is also true for spreading the word about Free Software.


Steven Ottenhoff

On 5/25/06, Ricardo Andere de Mello <gandhi at> wrote:
> you missed the point... profit is not a crime, neither money.
> what Im asking you is:
> what is your main reason to do/teach/talk free software? (you should
> know by now)
> I know people whose primarily reasons are social, ethical,
> philosophical, but I know some that are in this just because they see
> this as a businness.
> Actually I think this is directly connected to that thin line that
> separates free software from open-source. If you dont know the
> difference about them, I doubt you can understand the difference about
> doing for fun and for money. (please, when I say *you*, I say in a
> generalized way, not specifically you).
> Can you say you are a hero if you did something to save a person,
> without really knowing, just because you were at the right place and
> time? suppose you were at the street, and someone falls in front of you
> and you grab him, so this person dont crash his head at the street. You
> did this because of two reasons: first because it came into your
> direction, and second because humans have the reflex to grab falling
> things, like a simple ball. You actually dont *thought* about what you
> were doing.  So, can you still be a hero?
> []s, gandhi
> Jeroen Dekkers wrote:
> >At Wed, 24 May 2006 16:14:01 -0300,
> >Ricardo Andere de Mello wrote:
> >
> >
> >>I'll answer this with another question:
> >>
> >>Are you selling the idea because its contents, or because it will help
> >>you to profit in a near future?
> >>
> >>You are doing evangelism when you *believe* in what you are talking.
> >>Otherwise, you are just *selling* something, just like any other
> businness.
> >>
> >>for free software people, profit is just a collateral effect of
> >>evangelism... would you stop doing it if you dont have any profit?
> >>
> >>
> >
> >I don't agree with this. Profit is important and not some collateral
> >effect. Everybody needs money to buy food, clothes, a place to live,
> >etc. So you're obviously selling the idea to help make a profit.
> >
> >There is nothing wrong with making money, especially not if you use
> >Free Software to make money.
> >
> >Jeroen Dekkers
> >
> >
> --
> Ricardo Andere de Mello
> Presidente do Quilombo Digital
> 55 (11) 3271-7928 / 55 (11) 9917-7722
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