Linked by Linux Review on Tue 20th Mar 2012 17:07 UTC
GNU, GPL, Open Source It's been a while since we caught up with Stallman. But a couple months ago we took a look around at what's happening with law, politics and technology and realized that he maybe perhaps his extremism and paranoia were warranted all along. So when we were contacted by an Iranian Linux publication and asked if we would like to publish an English translation of a recent interview they had done with Stallman, I thought that it was a particularly rich opportunity.
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Oh my, Stallman, old chap ...
by ViktorRabe on Wed 21st Mar 2012 09:49 UTC
ViktorRabe
Member since:
2011-12-30

However, if you convince people that they deserve freedom, they will start rejecting nonfree software whether it is technically inferior or technically superior, because they will see that free software is ethically superior. They will understand the important question and judge it right. This is a full, deep success.


To quote Yoda: "That is why you fail."

Stallman, my friend, nobody except a loon will choose inferior software for ethical reasons that are connected to the software's inherent freedom or absence of said freedom. If need really be, a user will pirate the superior software. And if ethics play a role for said user, he'll choose the inferior software because he can't afford the superior one. But not many people will choose inferior software because it's the "right" thing to do for the sake of freedom.

You have to face the ugly truth someday, Stallman: what's most important for many users today, when it comes to FLOSS, is the "free as in beer", not the "free as in speech".

Edited 2012-03-21 10:00 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Stallman, my friend, nobody except a loon will choose inferior software for ethical reasons that are connected to the software's inherent freedom or absence of said freedom.


I don't see why not. People boycott a lot of "superior" things for ethical reasons all the time. On the other hand, there are many things we should do, ethically, but do not.
The problem, if you're Stallman, is not that people wouldn't boycott it, the problem is that they are not convinced that they should.

But not many people will choose inferior software because it's the "right" thing to do for the sake of freedom.


I guess that's the problem then. Maybe we should.
I think it's interesting how many people there are here who apparently value ethics less than technical features. Maybe that says something about us.

Reply Parent Score: 5

sparkyERTW Member since:
2010-06-09

"Stallman, my friend, nobody except a loon will choose inferior software for ethical reasons that are connected to the software's inherent freedom or absence of said freedom.


I don't see why not. People boycott a lot of "superior" things for ethical reasons all the time. On the other hand, there are many things we should do, ethically, but do not.
The problem, if you're Stallman, is not that people wouldn't boycott it, the problem is that they are not convinced that they should.

But not many people will choose inferior software because it's the "right" thing to do for the sake of freedom.


I guess that's the problem then. Maybe we should.
I think it's interesting how many people there are here who apparently value ethics less than technical features. Maybe that says something about us.
"

Well put. More and more I find myself placing more value on the ethical and freedom-minded aspects of software than the technical capabilities. What does the software claim to do? Do I trust it? Does it lock me in? Can I get my data back out of it freely? What happens if other parts of my system get updated? If it stops working, can I get it back? Will it force me to pay due to the circumstances an upgrade would create? Even if the source is available, does the software rely on a service that is black-box? Do I trust the provider of that service?

There are certain things that, yes, I have to rely on non-free software for, mainly hardware related. But I'm finding that I'm more frequently turning my nose up at software that may be flashy and feature-rich, but after a long, hard look at I realize I simply can't trust or rely upon.

Reply Parent Score: 5