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Re: [Reuben Thomas] browse-url.el Opera support

From: Richard Stallman
Subject: Re: [Reuben Thomas] browse-url.el Opera support
Date: Fri, 16 Jan 2004 14:54:11 -0500

The free software movement is based on the recognition that non-free
software is antisocial and unethical.  It is a social problem, and our
work is to solve that problem.  Success for us does not mean writing
popular free programs, it means ending the antisocial practice of
distributing non-free software.

Your argument for including this patch seems to be based on a
principle that that technical decisions should be made solely on
technical grounds.  That principle is a grave and fundamental error.
It rejects the lessons society learned after the development of
nuclear weapons: that technical decisions must be based on
consideration of social responsibility.  GNU derives from an idea of
social responsibility, and we make technical decisions based on that.

We can't tell what programs to use, but helping you use a non-free
program is not part of the GNU Project's mission.  I decided before
not to include this code, and I stand by the decision.

Not supporting non-free programs in Emacs is one of the ways we show
we are serious when we say they are unethical.  That may not convince
you, but we hope it will convince others.

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