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I blogged about why the Open Source community has to care about more than licenses to achieve digital freedom. karlitschek.de/2019/08/open-so

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@Karlitschek
> The formula (Personal Hardware) + (Free Software) = (Digital Freedom) is not valid anymore.

It is still perfectly valid, though perhaps not sufficient.

Good reader comments on that blog post.

NB: “than you are still unable to study” → s/than/then/

@Karlitschek Stallman et al weren't working on personal computers so much as workstations--personal computers were pretty awkward and underpowered then for development

@Karlitschek it may have been their focus on the Hurd for the kind of workstations involved in the Unix wars that opened the door for Linus

@Karlitschek the existence of free software and of open source as distinct movements, *despite* largely sharing the same licenses, is a very good example of how each has long been about more than licensing

@Karlitschek I think complaining about license discussion blames the messenger, as best I can tell out of ignorance as to how copyright works.

@Karlitschek free software advocates didn't create copyright law--that's something that (in the US at least) became increasingly a problem in the period Stallman first started on this: the expansion of copyright laws in 1976 and their application via Apple vs Franklin in 1983 unambiguously to software

@Karlitschek What's more, the US didn't join the Berne convention on copyright until *1989* ... about a *century* from the time it was first established.

@Karlitschek this is crucial because it is a very recent development in the US that copyright applies *automatically* to a creative work fixed in tangible form

@Karlitschek therefore, without licensing, there is *no* provision for sharing under the law, outside of the finicky provisions of fair use.

@Karlitschek as for the importance of data and privacy, these are issues that the FSF has been talking about for *years*. Recall the term "Service as a Software Substitute" (SaaSS) for instance.

@Karlitschek the AGPL was developed around the tern of the century, just as XMLHttpRequest was taking off, but web based services running just on CGI alone were already enough to show how things were heading.

@Karlitschek you and your colleagues have been doing great work. Seems to me your presentation to libreplanet recently was received warmly and well. So I don't understand where you get the idea that free software people are just about licensing?

@Karlitschek I had my browser instance open to disroot's instance of NextCloud earlier today, in response to the suggestion by someone else in the classroom that one use Dropbox.

@Karlitschek as for those of us who use f-droid, what are we supposed to do? stop using it until everyone can use? how does that help?

@Karlitschek we do what we can with what's available. In the meantime, we keep an eye out, but free-from-the-ground-up hardware barely exists, and certainly not at mass market prices and quantities.

@Karlitschek your post (and presumably, your speech) seem to fit in with the kind of thing I criticize in mastodon.sdf.org/@deejoe/10205

@Karlitschek I think some of what you say most closely fits "open source" but a great deal of the free software movement has long taken a more critical view of the kinds of things you mention, and has long looked at the larger picture

@Karlitschek of course, this more stringent approach doesn't bring in the Biggest Companies In The World kinds of attention and financial power, and so the reach is considerably less. Like, this is why A Certain Prominent Company Known For Using Open Source was able to buy a cell phone maker at one point, and why, in contrast, the GNU Project has never had that kind of money or power.

@Karlitschek Debian has been wrestling with the question of machine learning training data sets and what that means for free software, among others working on the problem.

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