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Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Free as in Freedom Network Services [was: Tack

From: Richard-qbiciii
Subject: Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Free as in Freedom Network Services [was: Tackling Network Effect]
Date: Mon, 14 May 2012 14:00:32 -0400

>Once we realize how easy it is to co-own the Means of Production for
>hosting Free Software, it will be obvious the same can be done for the
>more important issues of food and housing and health-care.
This leads me to confusion on the interpretation of what FREEDOM means to FSF. I also gather from other posts that there is confusion in the organization itself. If that is the case, then how is a clear message ever going to be sent to the masses? Speaking for myself this is how I interpret Freedom as it applies to software and things I purchase.

First freedom <> free. Freedom is rooted in choice. My choices. Hopefully, I have the 'best' of a line of products to choose from. In a totally free market the best will survive, and the inferior will fade away. Where the problem lies is in the rigging of the market. Where the best is kept off the market, and our choices are limited to only what is offered by controlling parties. Our store shelves are full of crap/junk appliances, and our legislatures are fill with crap/junk politicians. All because the process of allowing the best to the marketplace has been subverted and corrupted.

More important than your vote at the ballot box, is the votes you cast everyday with your money. Each purchase is a vote. You vote what business stays or which one goes. Your money has more power than anyone considers. If you don't like TSA.... quit flying. You don't like Wal-Mart... quit spending your money there. Opting-out has more power that all the marches on Washington D.C. Your money is your power.

When you put others in control of your spending (taxes, investments) then you have relinquished your power, your vote is no longer accounted for. If our government had to go door-to-door asking each of us for a money contribution to go and fight a war.... guess what? Instant peace.

There are tonnes of great companies out there that have a better mouse-trap and would do very well if allowed to come to market and compete fairly in a true 'free' market. Money is not bad.... it is a vote of confidence in a open and free market, and people have no problem spending (voting) for the best of the best.

There may be business that would jump on the idea and venue to show off their wares, and want the chance to let the public decide who has the better mouse-trap. They may even throw some cash in the pot.

Freedom is choice... not free. I don't want my choices or money messed with. That is my voice and power.

----- Original Message -----

From: Rudolf
Sent: Monday, May 14, 2012 12:35 PM
Subject: Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Free as in Freedom Network Services [was: Tackling Network Effect]

Usenet and irc may be good models in terms of figuring out how to share costs/ownership?

We can use the charity model and build it up into a federated model. For example, statusnet is federated and so is xmpp but there's no simple guide available for setting that up. There's no support group, there's no infrastructure basically.

On May 14, 2012 12:06 PM, "Patrick Anderson" <> wrote:
> I am willing to pay for domain registration and hosting if nobody else
> volunteers, or no organisation can donate it, if there is a good design. (Of
> course, donations would be welcome to help spread the cost!)

Sharing the costs, control and ownership of hosting is a fundamental
and inescapable part of drawing users away from proprietary offerings.

Our lack of understanding on this subject must not stop us from tackling
this most important issue.

We must design a GNU Mode of Production that allows us to cover the
real costs of production (purchasing hardware, supplying electricity,
repairing and operating those machines, etc.) while preserving freedom
for every user.

We cannot leave these details to corporations that intend to subjugate
and overcharge us (where 'overcharge' also includes spying for the
purpose of receiving more advertisement revenue).

We cannot leave this to the charity of a few of us to fund and maintain
a small set of servers.

Charity cannot scale to compete with Google, Skype, Amazon, etc.

We need a rigorous business plan that will allow us to cover the real
costs of hosting Free Software while preserving User Freedom.

This can certainly be done.

Google, Skype, Amazon, and others charge *more* than the costs of
production, and yet their users do not pay in any 'direct' manner.

The FSF is already large enough to begin this.

The FSF already hosts email ( and that could compete
with Gmail.

The FSF already hosts software projects ( that could
compete with

We could compete with Facebook immediately (the Free Software is
already written) if we understood how to cover the costs of *HOST* that
software in such a way that those costs continue to be covered, even
as those hardware requirements increase in scale.

We are so weak on the 'business' side that we cannot even cover the
basic costs of those operations, whereas our proprietary competitors
cover all of their costs and *more* (in that they also receive Profit).

We must devise a solution to sharing hardware or we will forever be in
bondage to those corporations that know how to share (as in shareholders)
hardware for the purpose of subjugating users.

I have been working on this issue for a while now, and have discovered
some of the parts of the solution.

Once we realize how easy it is to co-own the Means of Production for
hosting Free Software, it will be obvious the same can be done for the
more important issues of food and housing and health-care.

Patrick Anderson

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