Saturday 20 September 2008 by Bradley M. Kuhn
Today is International Software Freedom Day. I plan to spend the whole day writing as much Free Software as I can get done. I have read about lots of educational events teaching people how to use and install Free Software, and those sound great. I am glad to read stories about how well the day is being spent by many, and I can only hope to have contributed as much as people who spend the day, for example, teaching kids to use GNU/Linux.
What troubles me, though, is the some events today are sponsored by companies that produce proprietary software. I notice that even the official Software Freedom Day site lists various proprietary (or semi-proprietary) software companies as sponsors. Indeed, I declined an invitation to an event sponsored and hosted by a proprietary software company.
Today is about saying no to proprietary software, at least for one day. We live in the real world, of course, and some days we have to be willing to set our political beliefs aside to negotiate with proprietary software companies. But, on Software Freedom Day, I hope that our community will send a message to proprietary (or semi-proprietary) software companies that we reject user subjugation and favor software freedom instead.
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Both previously and presently, I have been employed by and/or done work for various organizations that also have views on Free, Libre, and Open Source Software. As should be blatantly obvious, this is my website, not theirs, so please do not assume views and opinions here belong to any such organization. Since I do co-own ebb.org with my wife, it may not be so obvious that these aren't her views and opinions, either.
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