05.08.21

Bashing Free Software and GNU/Linux is a Terrible Business Model for Publishers

Posted in GNU/Linux, Google at 7:48 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Android has Linux in it? Chrome OS has GNU inside? GNU/Linux isn't just for servers?

Summary: Contrary to unflattering portrayals by hostile media that’s sponsored by foes of Free software, the usage of Free software grows, even if things such as DRM and surveillance stand in the way of software freedom (which was wrongly assumed to be ushered in by Free software, irrespective of malicious features like 'telemetry')

In May 2021, according to StatCounter’s data from the US, there’s now 10%+ market share for GNU/Linux on desktops/laptops, albeit including ChromeOS (Gentoo). If one includes mobile (Android/Linux), it's even worse for Microsoft. Some time soon, on the “client side” at least (depends on definition of client, e.g. Internet-connected), Windows will be less than a quarter of the overall market.

“Some time soon, on the “client side” at least (depends on definition of client, e.g. Internet-connected), Windows will be less than a quarter of the overall market.”The corporate media isn’t talking about it, but a lot of things have changed over the past decade. When did the media last mention the collapse of IIS (and of Windows) in the servers sector? Lies by omission? For the sponsor?

Bashir on GNU/Linux: I told her it started in 1983... what did she say? She thinks it's from FinlandLater today we plan to record another episode of TechBytes (if all goes according to plan). As longtime listeners are aware (the show started more than a decade ago), we’ve long covered the growth of GNU/Linux and demise of Microsoft in our show. Many of the predictions did in fact come true. Some were ahead of their time, so to speak. Over the years we discussed Microsoft shills and media operatives, with names like Mary Jo Foley, Ad Bot (or Bought), Mr. Wilcox, and Andre Da Costa coming up every now and then. They’ve since then vanished or become more marginalised. Even ZDNet seems to be giving up, albeit slowly. Attacking Linux is a losing battle because it requires going against facts, which means it alienates the audience.

MIT and GNU: Did you know it was made in MIT? Yes, 38 years go... and then MIT pushed out the founder to cover up for Bill Gates bribes to MIT through Epstein

05.02.21

Richard Stallman: “Google Can Forcibly Impose Software Changes and the User Can’t Say No.”

Posted in Google, Interview at 6:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

First published a decade back

Summary: “This is the same thing that Microsoft has in Windows,” Stallman told me, “so Microsoft can also impose software changes. Any malicious feature that’s not in the program today could be remotely installed tomorrow.”

I think in practice one of the issues is many of the browsers these days have actually got some surveillance built in and one of the usual excuses these days is security, so they try to prevent phishing scams and things like such that are absolute; I think since Internet Explorer version 7 and Google Chrome and other browsers by default they will track the users and leave a trail, or at least provide the corporate maker of the browser, with a list with pages you visit, so the other releases…

“…Google can forcibly impose software changes and the user can’t say no.”Richard Stallman: Those are non-Free programs. Internet Explorer is non-Free and Google Chrome is non-Free. Not only that, Google Chrome has a universal back door, which is another way of saying auto-update; basically it means that Google can forcibly impose software changes and the user can’t say no. This is the same thing that Microsoft has in Windows, so Microsoft can also impose software changes. Any malicious feature that’s not in the program today could be remotely installed tomorrow. So, once a program has a universal back door, you must consider it not merely malware but universal malware.

Download:

Ogg Theora

As embedded (HTML5):

04.26.21

Richard Stallman Explains What’s Wrong With YouTube From a Free Software Perspective (Update: Transcript)

Posted in Free/Libre Software, Google, Videos at 11:02 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Dr. Richard Stallman, the Free Software Foundation’s founder, talks about restrictions that exist when it comes to YouTube (the same still applies, except Flash, and it has gotten worse since)


Direct download as Ogg

Transcript added:

[00:00]

(intro music)

RMS: YouTube requires running non-Free Software. Either you have to run Flash Player or you have to run a non-Free JavaScript program. To watch a WebM video from YouTube requires running a non-Free JavaScript program. Although that’s

[00:30]

not inherently necessary. They could serve up the WebM files without that, but they don’t. So I can’t watch things on YouTube and I don’t. I’ve seen other people do it and it seemed that it worked even some months ago without having to log in. Are you saying that they’ve changed that?

Roy: Not necessarily but Google has had other ways to try to

[01:00]

keep track of the users. Increasingly there is linkage even in Android between the Google profiles of people and now they’re also linking the comments in YouTube to people’s Google profile.

RMS: I don’t think you should have a Google profile. At least if you do then you shouldn’t use it for very much. Android is becoming oppressive in its requirements for users to make

[01:30]

an account with Google. But Android is not Free Software. There is the Android source code that Google releases which is Free Software, but that’s quite different from the collection of software that comes in a phone that says it’s running Android. So if you want to see all the details of this, cause there are a lot of details, look at www.gnu.org/philosophy/android-and-users-freedom.html

04.24.21

Video: YouTube/Google Censoring or Killing Channels in Subtle New Ways

Posted in Deception, Google at 6:21 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Many people are unaware of the ways in which Google destroys particular viewpoints; this reasonably new video wrapped that up in just over six minutes

04.05.21

Techrights Commends US Supreme Court for Supporting Programmers by Defending Fair Use

Posted in Antitrust, Google, Intellectual Monopoly at 11:10 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Stephen Breyer, U.S. Supreme Court judge

Summary: Stephen Breyer (above), the author of the latest big decision after an 11-year legal battle, is once again doing the right thing from a software developer’s perspective; only two Justices opposed this decision or dissented

Copyright maximalists have suffered a blow; as it turns out, on a holiday, SCOTUS did the right thing by deciding that copyrights on APIs are a disservice to society. As LWN put it, a “long saga of Oracle’s copyright-infringement against Google, which copied much of the Java API for use in Android, has come to an end” (no appeals anymore).

“Although Google itself is a monopoly, a decision against Google in this case would have devastated software development in general, no matter if proprietary or Free software.”A law firms-funded site said “a 6-2 decision authored by Justice Breyer, the Supreme Court has held that Google’s copying of the JAVA API naming convention was a fair use as a matter of law.” Another Oracle proponent said: “This decision was supportd [sic] by six of the nine justices.”

Slam dunk. Press coverage is starting to come out, e.g. HotHardware. Today isn’t just a bright sunny day but also a holiday and an epic milestone in the battle against copyright maximalists and software monopolists. Although Google itself is a monopoly, a decision against Google in this case would have devastated software development in general, no matter if proprietary or Free software.

04.04.21

Who Signed the Hate Letter Against Software Freedom (or Against FSF Bringing Back Its Founder)

Posted in Deception, Free/Libre Software, FSF, FUD, GNOME, Google, IBM, OSI at 1:07 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link

Summary: The concern trolls who are associated with FSF-hostile groups (sponsored by monopolies) didn’t manage to build enough momentum to sabotage the FSF; the media operatives on their side, however, try to tell us that the FSF is destroyed (monopolies pay them to say this, hoping for self-fulfilling prophecies)

NOW that the hate letter has reached a standstill (barely passed 3,000 signatures, whereas the response to that may soon reach 6,000 signatures) I’ve decided to record a quick video to explain who prepared and signed this letter (and why). Many of the names are very much expected (same as 2 years ago) and institutions are barely recognisable. Many have the strong conviction against the FSF because they’re BSD projects. Some have nothing whatsoever to do with code. In the case of the GNOME Foundation, they’ve attacked software freedom for many years (well over a decade!) and the OSI is a blatant attempt to steal the thunder from FSF. There should be no expectation of them supporting the FSF. They can only pretend.

“Many have the strong conviction against the FSF because they’re BSD projects.”The video above uses mostly polite language, unlike the letter that was signed. At the end they accomplished almost nothing. If anything, as people pointed out to me recently, the FSF became only more closely aligned with the uncompromising ideology of its founder. Some of the others left the FSF. Maybe that’s for the better.

Has CC Become a Google Drone?

Posted in EFF, Free/Libre Software, Google at 5:57 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Last week: The Open Source Creative Commons: Code of CONduct

CC money
Full text of “Full Filing” for fiscal year ending Dec. 2018 (latest available in ProPublica)

CC funding
ProPublica’s archive on CC (IRS filings). Notice 2016.

CC wiki

An elephant in the room: Sharing is caring, Cancel FSF
Rather similar to what Google did to EFF

Summary: With financial losses but still many millions in the bank (owing to obscenely large contributions; see EFF) CC seems to be working against the people who played a role in its very existence

03.25.21

Monopolies in Pain, Free Software (Copyleft) Their Kryptonite?

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Google, Microsoft at 1:37 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link

Summary: Kryptonite of monopolies is a mere concept; if a person represents that concept, they will try to discredit the person and anyone else who embraces that same concept

THE profound issues of yesterday’s (or yesteryear’s) monopolies may help explain the sheer attacks on software freedom and attempts to ‘swallow’ all of Free software using monopolies like GitHub — an endeavour that has mostly failed.

“Corporate slush funds are not a charitable giving but an instrument of coercion.”A detailed response to the “coup” will likely to be published in the weekend, probably Sunday (our list is growing). In the meantime, the above just a little improvised rant about what’s happening or what has happened so far this week. Money divides people. Corporate slush funds are not a charitable giving but an instrument of coercion.

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