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Re: Freedom. . . NOT

From: Alexander Terekhov
Subject: Re: Freedom. . . NOT
Date: Wed, 17 Sep 2008 17:24:12 +0200

Hyman Rosen wrote:

[... The FSF doesn't care about programmers ... ]

(Why Not Use the GPL?)

The main benefit to society and the economy of such intellectual
property notions as copyright and patents is the creation or
encouragement of a class of professionals. Allowing somebody talented in
a certain field to make a living directly from that field has a number
of advantages: the most obvious is the ability of talent to concentrate
on what they are good at, rather than requiring them to undertake other
tasks to support themselves; additionally, specialization is permitted,
leading to a feedback loop where skills are honed and improved. Prior to
copyright, those wishing to be inventors, authors or other creative
artists had to either find a patron or have additional means.


The upshot is that open-source, at present, gains the benefits of both
amateur enthusiasm and inventiveness and professional knowledge and
discipline (and income). This blessed state of affairs exists while
there is a pool of professional programmers able and willing to use
their spare time to produce open-source software. I would suggest that
the aims of the FSF will reduce this pool enormously, and the effects
will be catastrophic. Eric Raymond has argued that open-source culture
is essentially a gift culture; resources are in abundance and you gain
status by the bestowing of gifts on the community.[22] The absence of a
large supply of well-paying professional jobs in software—more or less
predicated on a large scale commercial industry— will re-introduce the
economics of scarcity to the software culture.


So, the GPL is an attempt to restrict freedom and the economics of
software production suggest that a pure free-software model will
restrict access to software. Does this leave anybody any room?


If people want to make software free, then they should release it into
the public domain without restraint. The MIT license provides a template
for such terms.


(GNG is a derecursive recursive derecursion which pwns GNU since it can
be infinitely looped as GNGNGNGNG...NGNGNG... and can be said backwards
too, whereas GNU cannot.)

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