The 2% discussion - "Free Software" or "Open Source Software"

Adonay Felipe Nogueira adfeno at
Thu Nov 16 13:41:15 UTC 2017

Addendum: Both the free/libre software movement and the open source
development model generally produce and work in the same projects. The
differences are in ideology and this can also result in discussions for
which the decisions affect the resulting product --- which might have
some side-effects of people leaving the project or even forking it so as
to make one related to their values.

As is already present in the reference I made to Stallman's talk, some
of the differences in the ideology of those two groups are visible in
the choice of license type, presence (or absense) of license enforcement
(and how it's made) and how they behave when noticing derivatives that
implement digital handcuffs or non-free parts when these adaptations use
their project's product/result (which is assumed to be free/libre).

Adonay Felipe Nogueira <adfeno at> writes:

> Interesting indeed.
> I vote for using terms that define our values, not neutral ones.
> Personallyq, I'm an activist, not an user. I want to spread my
> values, not rely on neutral term just "to reach" more people. If I reach
> more pople in the process, that's OK, but not a priority for me as
> free/libre software activist. I don't care for the "quantity" of people
> I reach for, I care for the "quality" of my message and the "quality" of
> my activism.
> I also try to copy/transport/mimic my personal values in my projects or
> in the projects I contribute to, so that I'm always "nitpicking" by
> mentioning the importance of free/libre software *philosophy* over time
> --- over and over when I have the chance, time and patience to do so.
> If however, I feel that I'm in an environment/project where it mainly
> focuses on "open source" (no matter if they use terms such as "fre/libre
> software" or "open source"), despite also doing the same thing as
> described in the previous paragraph, I sometimes feel less motivated to
> continue working on that project or tend to take/view the project's
> product/result with a grain of salt.
> Finally, Stallman also states ([1]) that supporters/followers/proponents
> --- and projects supporting/following --- free/libre software
> *philosophy* should avoid both "FOSS" (because of the misleading "free"
> part which reminds people of "gratis") and "FLOSS" (because it's too
> neutral).
> [1]
> <>
> (under CC BY-SA 4.0).

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