[Fsfe-ie] Irish Times article, my feedback

Ciaran O'Riordan ciaran at member.fsf.org
Mon Jul 28 12:10:32 CEST 2003

Hi Ben,
  I'm afraid you've called my bluff on the "irlgov is Microsofts
biggest customer" bit.  I reckon it's true simply because I can't
think of a larger employer of office staff.  I'll try to dig up a
decent reference for this. (does anyone have any they know of?)

  I agree with your comments about my dictator/comrade terminology,
I'll use your vendor lock-in and associates (or similar) in future.

  (If 92% of desktops only used Free Software Linux-based OSs, would I
call it a dictatorship? Well, who would be the dictator?  How would
the rule of the dictator be enforced?)

  You're right about needing to be rigourous regarding facts.  I gave
myself a bit of slack since the mail was from me as an individual, but
if/when "we, the list" get organised, we will need internal reviews of
statements before they get sent.

Thanks for the feedback.

On Mon, Jul 28, 2003 at 09:50:16AM +0100, Ben Klaasen wrote:
> Hi Ciaran -
> Nice work. I didn't see the article, but I usually check out Karlin 
> Lillington because she's better informed than most journos who write for 
> the business or technology sections of their respective newspapers.
> We've got to be absolutely rigourous regarding any facts we wish to use 
> - I've heard that quote before about the Government being Microsoft's 
> largest Irish customer - what's the source of that quote? (Please don't 
> say "the FSF" - I mean /independent/ source.)
> You say Free Software "represented liberation from the desktop dictator 
> role that Microsoft had." I think a quick explanation of "vendor 
> lock-in" would be less strident. (If 92% of people were using Linux on 
> their desktop, would you consider that be dictatorship too?) I'm not 
> sure how helpful terms like "comrade" are, either, in terms of getting 
> our point of view across to a mainstream press journo.
> regards
> Ben

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