Comment on "Nine Attitude Problems in Free and =?iso-8859-1?q?Open=09SourceSoftware?="

Max Moritz Sievers mms at
Fri Oct 24 11:59:04 UTC 2008

P.B. wrote:
> Examples:
> 1) At work they use "proprietary product X". You're practically forced
> to have "X" on your home PC, too because very often you must do
> something from home. You really have to be in a special position to
> tell your boss: "No. I won't. Use free stuff. then I will/can"
> The default answer will be: Then you can't stay in our company/team.
> sorry. Next one, please!

And how do we judge an executive who prefers to use proprietary software?

> 2) 1 out of 20 can open "Free Format Y".
> So, now you show me e.g. a small company, home-user or no-name band
> who will take that compromise and say: "Oh you can't read it? Well,
> I'm soooo important that you will *have to* figure out how to do it,
> because otherwise you can't work with me / listen to our stuff / read
> my document"
> We all know what most people on the other end of the line will answer:
> "Don't care. goodbye - Do your IT homework and use 'proprietary stuff
> X' - because that's professional. why? because everyone uses it!"

I act this way. Sometimes I get quite exclusive content which I distribute in 
Ogg Vorbis or LaTeX. "You can't use it? Do your IT homework!"

> 3) No Flash, no WLAN, no....
> I totally see your point, and I'm walking on a similar path. My
> experience however is, that your setup & life is your showcase. If you
> are into Free Software (and everything that's connected with it), you
> would want people to see you and think: "I might give that a try".
> If they see you typing on the commandline all the time, answering 99%
> of their requests with: "nope. can't do that." - their impression
> might become slightly biased to the negative side....
> A: Those FS-nerds don't even have wireless!
> B: Yeah! it sucks. I can't watch anything on my boyfriend's notebook.
> And the music files he sent me the other day? My ipod wouldn't play
> them. I'm soooo glad I got my own Mac!

I have experienced this procedure with MS Word and Excel documents. Somehow 
they forget their own struggle with incompatibilities. I know of a case that 
a city administration couldn't read their documents. But thats no problem. 
They still use MS Office.

Max Moritz Sievers

More information about the Discussion mailing list