[Trisquel-users] Munich gives up on GNU/Linux and free/open source software

magicbanana at gmail.com magicbanana at gmail.com
Sun Aug 31 16:25:25 CEST 2014


Most GNU/Linux users have never heard of GNU. Like Ishamael, they say they  
are "Linux users". They praise the features in the operating system, its  
security, etc. And yet, as you write, "the free software movement remains  
tiny even after the biggest spying scandal in history". If people still do  
not care about their computer freedoms (such as "not being spied on"), it is  
because they did not hear enough about freedoms. Not the opposite.

Once a user acknowledges she has fundamental freedoms that deserve to be  
respected, she never goes back. A transition is certainly needed: she starts  
with imperfect solution: free software on Windows, then a distribution with  
blobs because she did not know about firmware issues, etc. Anyway, her  
objective is to reach 100% freedom in her computing life. Not 99%. The FSF is  
the much needed lighthouse guiding towards this objective.

If the user only heard of the practical advantages of some free software (she  
has rather heard about "open source software"), she may use it. However, she  
sees no problem in using proprietary software in parallel (why would there be  
a problem when Linux includes proprietary firmware, when her distribution  
proposes Adobe Flash during the install, etc.). And she goes back to  
proprietary software whenever it becomes practically better. Insisting on  
practical advantages only has a short term "influence". It is "pointless"  
w.r.t. the goals of freeing computer users.

That is why "the free software movement remains tiny even after the biggest  
spying scandal in history".


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