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Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Gitlab and Gitorious (was Re: support me)

From: Aaron Wolf
Subject: Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Gitlab and Gitorious (was Re: support me)
Date: Sun, 08 Mar 2015 21:56:59 -0700
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:31.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/31.5.0

Yes, we should demand this level of transparency regarding widely
published / distributed items. We already require nutrition details and
ingredients on food. We don't require a recipe to be published, but I
think that would be fine to do so. It would apply only to a certain
level of distribution. A one-time batch of cookies sold at a Farmer's
Market wouldn't require such things. Mass distribution probably should
require transparency.

Anyway, today, the best ethical tractor is this actual open-source

And otherwise, no, you cannot just easily adapt other tractors because,
like cars, they are today all complex computers running proprietary

I don't see any real justification for the view that mandating source
release for mass-distributed products could be a bad thing.

I will acknowledge that my rhetorical proposal isn't actually copyleft,
both because it doesn't use copyright law and because it doesn't
necessarily cover situations where people make their own small
modifications that they then distribute. Products distributed over the
internet publicly are necessarily mass-distributed, but if you
distribute a few copies of something or productions of something more
privately, mandated-source-release wouldn't apply.

See, I'm not proposing utopia here. All laws and situations are
imperfect. But measures that protect the public interest, openness, and
freedom combined with abolition of copyright law would be a dramatic
improvement for society over the status quo. I'm not concerned or
interested in discussing hypothetical minor downsides to the policy
details of something we don't see realistically happening any time soon.

On 03/08/2015 05:56 PM, Robinson Tryon wrote:
> On Sun, Mar 8, 2015 at 3:42 PM, Aaron Wolf <> wrote:
>> Abolish copyright, prohibit DRM, mandate source release. With that
>> combo, there is no need for copyright law.
> But by what policy or ethical position would we mandate source
> release? Just because we require it for software?
> If I buy a tractor, I can take it apart and modify it or improve it
> using my wrenches, cutting torch, and welder, but there's no
> requirement that I have to be given the designs. I'd definitely
> consider supporting those manufacturers who do provide blueprints,
> open hardware, etc.. (see LifeTrac), but going down the path towards
> complete transparency on all design and manufacturing isn't something
> that I'm sure should be legislated.
>> Copyleft is a means to an
>> end. The end is software freedom. If we can achieve software freedom
>> without that hack, great. It would be the greatest ideal if copyleft
>> indeed disappears because it is no longer needed. Without prohibition
>> of DRM and without mandatory source-release for published software, we
>> still need copyleft.
> Rather than a mandated position, I'd much prefer for copyleft to be
> the preferred choice for software, requested by an informed populace
> desiring transparency in the tools they use to control their money,
> protect their houses, and secure their private information. If
> software must be copyleft, would the same structure be imposed on all
> other aspects of design, production and interchange in our societies?
> I remain skeptical..
> Cheers,
> --R

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