Bonum Certa Men Certa

Freedom is Not a Religion

Santiago de Compostela cathedral



Summary: Attempts to dethrone Free software supporters are fueled by disinformation and slurs

PREVIOUS posts described the events that led to a vocal confrontation between GNU and people who have always disliked GNU [1, 2, 3]. Some of them are not even GNU/Linux users, but that's another story.



As Mono-Nono puts it:

Coincidence is an amazing thing.For example, it can surely only be pure coincidence that the cast of characters making the most noise attacking RMS and calling for a vote on GNOME leaving GNU was among same cast of characters that made the most noise attacking RMS and calling for him to be banned earlier this year.

[...]

Now that’s The Spirit of Fauxpen Sourceâ„¢ in action!


It is truly amazing when Free software people are told off by those who are new to the Free software world and are not even supportive of Free software. They do this in Free software territories. It's like the Twilight Zone or revisionist occupation, wherein they try to overthrow the 'natives' though proximity and assimilation.

“It's like the Twilight Zone or revisionist occupation, wherein they try to overthrow the 'natives' though proximity and assimilation.”People supportive of such an attack on GNU are sometimes being misinformed by those who try to dethrone GNU. Others just never supported Free software to begin with. For instance, Thom Holwerda from OSNews has been hostile towards GNU/Linux and supportive of Mono/.NET for quite some time, so it is not surprising that his post on this subject is tilted in favour of Fauxpen Sourceâ„¢ people, who strives to exclude GNU. "I don't like OSNews anymore," tells us one reader, "they ignored my submission for this "[...] It seems like RMS is oblivious to this change in perspective.""

"[They] completely ignored what I submitted, probably because I wasn't attacking RMS," he added, "they've pulled other stuff I wrote."

It was also rather disappointing to see that Sean Michael Kerner distorts the FSF's views as though they are a "religious" stance. Terms like "religion" are routinely used to smear passionate Free software proponents [1, 2, 3, 4, 5], which only leads to it being further misunderstood. Kerner writes:

The issue with GNU has always been its religious stance on Free vs Open.


There is nothing "religious" about it; there is Freedom and there is visibility of code, which are not mutually exclusive but are not the same thing, either. The FSF strives to protect control by the user of a program so that someone in a distant island, for example, will be in complete control of his/her digital computing experience. Autonomy has absolutely nothing to do with religion (quite the opposite in fact!) and the religious parodies from Richard Stallman are in this regard similar to the ones from Richard Dawkins.

GNU has not changed its basic goals since the 1980s and this is commendable (modifications and alterations are mostly clarifications). To compromise is to accept a defeat and to give up the inherent goals, which means loss of one's freedom in an ever-increasing complexity of digital universes. The FSF stands in the way of some very rich and powerful people, so the attacks against it are nothing new and definitely not the last.

"Copying all or parts of a program is as natural to a programmer as breathing, and as productive. It ought to be as free."

--Richard Stallman

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