Norwegian Free Software Center Opposes Government Pro FOSS Policy

Carsten Agger agger at
Mon Sep 13 11:05:18 UTC 2010

man, 13 09 2010 kl. 11:32 +0100, skrev Alex Hudson:
> On Mon, 2010-09-13 at 10:58 +0100, CiarĂ¡n O'Riordan wrote:
> > Possible connection, FWIW:
> > 
> > Bruce Perens also opposes pro-fs government policies:
> >
> > "I still think that preference laws are the wrong way to go. [...] I keep
> > thinking that the end still doesn't justify the means."
> This isn't a hugely uncommon point of view, though - I think you're
> possibly making a link too far.
> Personally, I'm pretty much against them: you can't argue coherently and
> simultaneously against the preference given to other platforms and for a
> preference given to free software*; the basic principle is the same and
> people will smell hypocrisy.

Ah, but you can.

You can say that proprietary software vendors will not let public
entities control the software that runs in its infrastructure, and will
not let them make necessary changes or enhancements themselves if the
vendor is unwilling or unable to do so. It's not a question of
hypocrisy, it is a demand for certain consumer rights.

Public entities should say: We are *completely willing* to buy Oracle or
Microsoft or whatever, if that's the best and most cost-effective
solution, but we *need* it under the equivalent of the GNU GPL, at
least. If the vendors are unwilling to sell under these conditions,
"preference" is not given to non-proprietary vendors, on the contrary,
the proprietary vendors de-selected themselves.



More information about the Discussion mailing list