Bonum Certa Men Certa

Free Software is Not About Price, It is About Freedom (Personal Autonomy, Control, Sovereignty, Privacy, Dignity...)

Reader's art

Beyond the lock
Drawing by Mogz (full resolution version) for Techrights. "About 4 hours, using various texture brushes, and a soft blender for the nature scene in the background," she notes.

Summary: Reasserting the importance of adopting Free-as-in-freedom (libre, livre) software; the window of opportunity is closing fast as a pandemic is leveraged as pretext for many hostile aspects of technology and once the door is shut there may be no alternatives left or permitted (e.g. anonymous payments using cash and software without state-imposed back doors)

TODAY we continue to release internal documents about patents (or Europe's monopolised patent office, which is also Europe's second-largest institution), but let's not forget what got us started; a decade and a half ago there was a directive in Parliament regarding software patents in Europe. Lobbyists of companies like Microsoft tried hard to cement monopoly by making it impossible to develop software in peace. Coding is an activity whose product is already covered by copyright law. Do we want patents on code? Is that even feasible to deal with? Code, unlike physical products, can be developed by a sole programmer. Programmers don't want to study hundreds of thousands of patents before writing a few lines of code.

"GNU/Linux is still the foremost vehicle for advancement of software freedom because it's likely the most practical to adopt and use (compared to lesser-known operating systems with far fewer device drivers)."Earlier this year we learned that software patents were leveraged against European developers and distributors of GNU/Linux distributions. No, not Canonical's or IBM's; actual community distros... people who barely live from one paycheck to the next (if they have a paycheck at all; some rely on generous donations). There's an urgent need to do something about it; the media sure isn't talking about it (too busy writing 'scripted articles' which are actually PR disguised as 'reporting'), but developers tell us about it.

GNU/Linux is still the foremost vehicle for advancement of software freedom because it's likely the most practical to adopt and use (compared to lesser-known operating systems with far fewer device drivers).

Beyond the lock close-upWe recognise that many of our readers are not coders; some aren't very technical either (or not technical in the software/programming sense). Mogz, who has just produced for us the drawing on the right (and above), understands that software freedom isn't just for coders. It's also important for artistic types like herself -- a person who values privacy and other cornerstones of a dignified society

There's an old saying about recognition of the importance of something only once someone loses that something. Think of elections. Back in the days people had no voting rights or only particular people could vote (e.g. the rich "landowners", only males, only 'white' males and so on). Had people, especially women, lost their right to vote, there would be an uproar, correct? Why aren't people protesting the erosion of their privacy? Why are people installing so-called 'apps' that spy on their movement in the name of 'protecting' them? Why are people tolerating operating systems which are very well known to contain deliberate back doors?

Our guess is, as time goes by and things get grimmer (we're seeing EPO workers increasingly concerned about being spied on inside their own homes) more people will begin to recognise just how important Free/libre software is. The problem is, by the time enough people realise this and "wake up" (akin to recognition of the voters' disfranchisement) it might already be too late to effectively work to correct it.

Recent Techrights' Posts

Curation and Preservation Work
The winter is coming soon and this means our anniversary is near
Microsoft GitHub Exposé — In the Alex Graveley Case, His Lawyer, Rick Cofer, Appears to Have Bribed the DA to Keep Graveley (and Others) Out of Prison
Is this how one gets out of prison? Hire the person who bribes the DA?
Richard Stallman's Public Talk in GNU's 40th Anniversary Ceremony
Out now
Objections to binutils CoC
LXO response to proposed Code of Conduct
Conde Nast (Reddit), Which Endlessly Defamed Richard Stallman and Had Paid Salaries to Microsoft-Connected Pedophiles, Says You Must Be Over 18 to See 'Stallman Was Right'
Does this get in the way of their Bill Gates-sponsored "Bill Gates says" programme/schedule?
A Lot of Technological 'Progress' Has Been Nothing But Buzzwords
Free software does not try to excite people people over nothing
Techrights Was Right About the Chaff Bots (They Failed to Live up to Their Promise)
Those who have been paying attention to news of substance rather than fashionable "tech trends" probably know that GNU/Linux grew a lot this year
Selling Out to Microsoft Makes You Dead Beef
If all goes as well as we've envisioned, Microsoft will get smaller and smaller
Mobile Phones Aren't Your Friend or a Gateway to Truly Social Life
Newer should not always seem more seductive, as novelty is by default questionable and debatable
Links 29/09/2023: Disinformation and Monopolies
Links for the day
iFixit Requests DMCA Exemption…To Figure Out How To Repair McDonald’s Ice Cream Machines
Reprinted with permission from Ryan Farmer
Jim Zemlin Thinks the World's Largest Software Company Has 200 Staff, Many of Whom Not Technical at All
biggest ego in the world
Links 29/09/2023: Linux Foundation Boasting, QLite FDW 2.4.0 Released
Links for the day
Red Hat Does Not Understand Community and It's Publicly Promoting Microsoft's Gartner is basically lioning a firm that has long been attacking GNU/Linux in the private and public sectors at the behest of Microsoft
A 'Code of Conduct' Typically Promoted by Criminal Corporations to Protect Crimes From Scrutiny
We saw this in action last week
Techrights Extends Wishes of Good Health to Richard M. Stallman
Richard Stallman has cancer Still Going, Some Good News From Canada
a blow to software patents in Canada
The Debian Project Leader said the main thing Debian lacked was more contributors
The Debian Project Leader said the main thing Debian lacked was more contributors
IRC Proceedings: Thursday, September 28, 2023
IRC logs for Thursday, September 28, 2023
Links 28/09/2023: Openwashing and Patent Spam as 'News'
Links for the day
Links 28/09/2023: Preparing Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.9 and 9.3 Beta
Links for the day
We Need to Liberate the Client Side and Userspace Too
Lots of work remains to be done
Recent IRC Logs (Since Site Upgrade)
better late than never
Techrights Videos Will be Back Soon
We want do publish video without any of the underlying complexity and this means changing some code
Microsoft is Faking Its Financial Performance, Buying Companies Helps Perpetuate the Big Lies (or Pass the Debt Around)
Our guess is that Microsoft will keep pretending to be huge, even as the market share of Windows (and other things) continues to decrease
Techrights Will Tell the Story (Until Next Year!) of How Since 2022 It Has Been Under a Coordinated Attack by a Horde of Vandals and Nutcases
People like these belong in handcuffs and behind bars (sometimes they are) and our readers still deserve to know the full story. It's a cautionary tale for other groups and sites
Why It Became Essential to Split GNU/Linux Stories from the Rest
These sites aren't babies anymore. In terms of age, they're already adults.
Losses and Gains in an Age of Oligarchy - A Techrights Perspective
If you don't even try to fix something, there's not even a chance it'll get fixed
Google (and the Likes Of It) Will Cause Catastrophic Information Loss Rather Than Organise the World's Information
Informational and cultural losses due to technological plunder
Links 28/09/2023: GNOME 45 Release Party, 'Smart' Homes Orphaned
Links for the day
Security Leftovers
Xen, breaches, and more
GNOME Console Won’t Support Color Palettes or Profiles; Will Support Esperanto
Reprinted with permission from Ryan Farmer