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Re: State of the GNUnion 2020

From: Samuel Thibault
Subject: Re: State of the GNUnion 2020
Date: Sun, 23 Feb 2020 01:34:05 +0100
User-agent: NeoMutt/20170609 (1.8.3)

Alexandre François Garreau, le dim. 23 févr. 2020 01:08:25 +0100, a ecrit:
> Le dimanche 23 février 2020, 00:02:27 CET Samuel Thibault a écrit :
> > I see my students not think that much when they put software on github,
> > if I don't discuss with them. When you create a repository on github,
> > it proposes to set a licence, and it happens to list essentially free
> > licences (it may not be so long-term wise on github). But if you
> > don't explicitly make a choice, no license is set, and thus in many
> > juridictions the software is not free.
> This is bad of github, but this is a bad copyright law trick (that all 
> States favoring copyright (that is, imho, all of them) do), and people 
> should be warned against.
> So we need education… but only because work is done *against us* in the 
> other direction! Wouldn’t the State instantiate such tricky laws, in a 
> world where everybody publish stuff and don’t expect it to have special —
> and technically obvious to circumvent— restrictions, we wouldn’t need to 
> do that.

Ok, but that's what we have now.  So yes, we have to teach people.

> > > We shouldn’t be defending free software because it is good but because
> > > it gives freedom, so we shouldn’t try to make it good *just* for the
> > > fantasy of it to be considered as such so then people agree on free
> > > software. People need to be *politically convinced*.
> > 
> > Sure. But if your software is unknown, it will not attract new
> > contributors, and you will not have the opportunity to discuss with them
> > about the politics.
> It’s not with contributors that you should discuss about the politics but 
> with the users.

To make sure that long-term-wise you have free software alternatives,
you want to discuss with contributors too.

> > > So people will want to uphold freedom anyway.  Maybe fewer, and that
> > > would be sad, but then we’d need to give them *political*
> > > hand-holding, not technical one.
> > 
> > But they'll most often come from a technical door.
> Personally I’ve more seen the opposite.  As most people aren’t technically 
> skilled, or programmers anyway.

I'm talking about contributors. They would most often come contributing
for technical reasons, not for political reasons.

> > We often see this kind of situation in the community-driven ISPs of
> > FFDN: people often come with technical questions to help some people
> > with Internet access, and they come home not only with technical
> > answers, but also political aspects of why e.g. network neutrality is
> > important etc.
> Do people join *before* knowing about political aspects, in areas
> where it is already possible and even common to use commercial ISPs?


> Anyway, as I’ve told before, these local ISPs are way different,

For various reasons, yes. But for teaching people about the politics
involved behind just setting up Internet acceess, I believe there is a
lot in common with teaching people about the politics involved behind
just writing software.

> > If we were not nice/welcoming on the technical questions, they would
> > just not listen to whatever politics we'd like to talk them about in
> > addition to the technical parts. Because they have no idea that these
> > questions are important. We have a similar situation with free software.

> My current ISP is part of FFDN.  [...]

Sorry, I didn't understand the actual relation with the point I was

> So here, in the end, you could think it is like GNU, a bunch of expert old 
> hackers who control everything because they were here from the beginning…
> …except actually it’s not, pretty much the opposite:
> — these weren’t there from the beginning, they just happened to arrive in 
> the middle, and were enough “skilled” and “meritant” to set up a 
> completely informal meritocracy (like what was argued for since several 
> months), by doing the right things in the right time;

So perhaps some written constitutional text was needed to prevent this
from happening?

> — statutorily it is democratic, so it is a proof constitutions proves 
> nothing (it just takes from people who gave their name to the states, who 
> reserved domain names or who are root on the right machines to do whatever 
> they want if we let them, and them justify themselves);

> — constitutionally, it is upholding free software, as FFDN statuses 
> require to,

?? Where does FFDN requires that?
The word "logiciel" doen't appear in the statuts, règlement, and charte.


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