Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 3rd Jan 2011 11:53 UTC, submitted by SReilly
Internet & Networking "In the physical world, we have the right to print and sell books. Anyone trying to stop us would need to go to court. That right is weak in the UK (consider superinjunctions), but at least it exists. However, to set up a web site we need the cooperation of a domain name company, an ISP, and often a hosting company, any of which can be pressured to cut us off. In the US, no law explicitly requires this precarity. Rather, it is embodied in contracts that we have allowed those companies to establish as normal. It is as if we all lived in rented rooms and landlords could evict anyone at a moment's notice." Recommended reading. I'm no fan of Stallman, but despite a bit too much dramatisation towards the end, this article aptly illustrates in layman's terms why the 'net needs to be free, open, and unregulated.
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Verging on self-parody
by BallmerKnowsBest on Mon 3rd Jan 2011 17:08 UTC
BallmerKnowsBest
Member since:
2008-06-02

Ah, Stallman. He's just as pushy and painfully-transparent in his agenda as any marketdroid or propagandist in history, and yet he gets lauded for it. Aside from grooming habits, the only real difference between RMS and Steve Jobs is that Jobs gets paid to be an obnoxious ideologue.

In the physical world, we have the right to print and sell books. Anyone trying to stop us would need to go to court. That right is weak in the UK (consider superinjunctions), but at least it exists. However, to set up a web site we need the cooperation of a domain name company, an ISP, and often a hosting company, any of which can be pressured to cut us off.


This is painfully stupid. To get a book released to a market of any significant size, you need a publisher/printer, a distributor, and retailers - any of which can be "pressured to cut us off."

In the physical world, we have the right to pay money and to receive money — even anonymously. On the Internet, we can receive money only with the approval of organizations such as PayPal and MasterCard, and the security state tracks payments moment by moment.


There are 2 possibilities here. Either Stallman is being disingenuous, or he's truly unable to grasp the reasons why an electronic transfer of money (possibly crossing international borders) differs from an in-person cash transaction. The guy sounds so paranoid, he probably thinks that the "Memo" field on cheques are part of some Big Brother-esque conspiracy to spy on him.

With free software, we can at least control what software does in our own computers. The LOIC program used for Anonymous protests is free software; in particular, users can read its source code and change it, so it cannot impose malicious features as Windows and MacOS can.


Wow. So software designed specifically and solely for malicious use is A-OK in Stallman's eyes, just so long as it's Free Software(tm)? But not closed source software, because it might, potentially have hidden malicious functionality?

At least we now know the origin of the "all proprietary software should be assumed to be malware" idiocy that lemming2 was spouting recently. It's exactly the same reasoning as "if you want privacy, then you must have something to hide", just applied to source code.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Verging on self-parody
by sorpigal on Mon 3rd Jan 2011 19:17 in reply to "Verging on self-parody"
sorpigal Member since:
2005-11-02

Very transparent trolling, given that your name is "Ballmer Knows Best." 3/10. Try again some other time.

the only real difference between RMS and Steve Jobs is that Jobs gets paid to be an obnoxious ideologue

You think that RMS isn't paid? What do you think he eats? Wait, don't tell me, bugs, right? And he probably is homeless so he sleeps in the dirt! That explains his grooming habits! Grow up.

To get a book released to a market of any significant size, you need a publisher/printer, a distributor, and retailers - any of which can be "pressured to cut us off."

To get published initially there are barriers in both places. However, once a book has been published in the physical world it is far, far harder to 'retract' it, whereas in the digital world it's pretty easy (streisand effect notwithstanding). Did you miss this obvious point deliberately or are you just not paying attention? Oh wait, I forgot you're just trolling. Nevermind.

There are 2 possibilities here. Either Stallman is being disingenuous, or he's truly unable to grasp the reasons why an electronic transfer of money (possibly crossing international borders) differs from an in-person cash transaction.

Because he notes a difference between the online transfer of money and the meatspace transfer of money you think he must be being disingenuous? On what basis? He says "It's different" and you say "I KNOW IT'S DIFFERENT." I'm really trying to figure out your point here. Stallman's is pretty clear: Anonymous monetary transactions *should* be possible online, and they're not. Dare I assume that you at any time *had* a point by asking what it was?

So software designed specifically and solely for malicious use is A-OK in Stallman's eyes, just so long as it's Free Software(tm)? But not closed source software, because it might, potentially have hidden malicious functionality?

Obviously you don't grasp the difference between you attacking someone and someone else attacking you. If I take open software and use it maliciously, I'm harming someone else deliberately. That's on me. If I run closed software, innocently or maliciously, someone else is harming me. Stallman isn't trying to prevent you from behaving criminally, though it's a shame, he's trying to protect you from others who are making a specific kind of attempt to harm you.

Edited 2011-01-03 19:26 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

Very transparent trolling, given that your name is "Ballmer Knows Best." 3/10.


And yet, you still replied.

Try again some other time.


Why would I want to do that? If the purpose of my post & username was trolling, then it's clearly worked on you.

"the only real difference between RMS and Steve Jobs is that Jobs gets paid to be an obnoxious ideologue

You think that RMS isn't paid?
"

As you have some problems with basic reading comprehension, allow me to repeat that sentence, this time with emphasis on the part that you conveniently ignored.

"the only real difference between RMS and Steve Jobs is that Jobs gets paid to be an obnoxious ideologue"

"To get a book released to a market of any significant size, you need a publisher/printer, a distributor, and retailers - any of which can be "pressured to cut us off."

To get published initially there are barriers in both places. However, once a book has been published in the physical world it is far, far harder to 'retract' it, whereas in the digital world it's pretty easy (streisand effect notwithstanding).
"

The detail that completely invalidates your point is "notwithstanding"? Well how wonderfully convenient!

Did you miss this obvious point deliberately or are you just not paying attention?


Get your own material, kid, I don't need you riding my coattails.

"There are 2 possibilities here. Either Stallman is being disingenuous, or he's truly unable to grasp the reasons why an electronic transfer of money (possibly crossing international borders) differs from an in-person cash transaction.

Because he notes a difference between the online transfer of money and the meatspace transfer of money you think he must be being disingenuous?
"

Stallman's being disingenuous by trying to imply that, in contrast to the internet, anonymous transfer of money is the norm in meatspace (that wasn't true even before credit cards, last I looked cheques and money orders aren't anonymous either).

I'm really trying to figure out your point here. Stallman's is pretty clear: Anonymous monetary transactions *should* be possible online, and they're not.


And how exactly do you suggest we implement anonymous online funds transfers? Or for that matter, how do you suggest we make ANY non-cash funds transfer truly anonymous?

"So software designed specifically and solely for malicious use is A-OK in Stallman's eyes, just so long as it's Free Software(tm)? But not closed source software, because it might, potentially have hidden malicious functionality?

Obviously you don't grasp the difference between you attacking someone and someone else attacking you. If I take open software and use it maliciously, I'm harming someone else deliberately. That's on me. If I run closed software, innocently or maliciously, someone else is harming me. Stallman isn't trying to prevent you from behaving criminally, though it's a shame, he's trying to protect you from others who are making a specific kind of attempt to harm you.
"

So you're saying that you consider the "harm" caused by non-malicious closed source software to be worse or on par with the harm caused by software such as LOIC (which is specifically and blatantly intended to be used maliciously), so long as the source is available for the malice-enabling applications? Do you have any notion how ridiculous that sounds?

Oh, and I have to pick out this little gem:

If I run closed software, innocently or maliciously, someone else is harming me.


Hahaha, seriously? And can you give any specific example how that harms you? Sorry, but the "evils of proprietary software" rhetoric starts to ring a bit hollow when you're comparing them to actual, tangible harms (such as the harm caused by DDoS attacks)

Reply Parent Score: 3