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Re: It's time to talk about Free Software

On Fri, 19 Feb 1999, Joseph Carter wrote:


> > >  do we need another license like a Commercial GNU Public License (CGPL)
> > > where the code is still completely free to modify, but the author's
> > > concerns are accommodated and their needs dealt with?
> > This I think is a really good idea potentially worth spending some money
> > on.
> I think probably this is a bad move.  I thought it a good one before, but
> I've somewhat changed my mind here.  Corporations are trying to make
> Linux non-free little by little and most of the community is all too
> happy to let them do it.  Binary-only applications, binary-only network
> clients(!), binary-only network servers(!!), and binary-only kernel
> drivers(!!!) are WELCOMED and SUPPORTED by too much of the community. 
> This is A Very Bad Thing.

Much as I am aware of sticking my neck out here, I agree. Alas, some of
these packages are seen as "essential" (there is no adequate free office
suite for linux, for example), and may help Linux's popularity, but I
don't want to see linux becoming an OS based on non-free software running
on a free kernel. Wordperfect et al is a double-edged sword. We (the free
software community) must remain aware of the need for packages to replace
Wordperfect. Such things should be doable with free software. Linux should
remain a system which users can get everything out of without needing
non-free software. This is a bit of an RMS-ism I'm aware, but there you go

Elen sila lumenn' omentielvo

Steward of the Cambridge Tolkien Society
Selwyn College Computer Support
Debian GNU/Hurd - love at first byte

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