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[libreplanet-discuss] The future of Free Software and Free Society

From: Robinson Tryon
Subject: [libreplanet-discuss] The future of Free Software and Free Society
Date: Mon, 9 Mar 2015 14:30:08 -0500

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

On Mon, Mar 9, 2015 at 12:25 PM, Will Hill <> wrote:
> Yes, the law should follow our morals.
> While it might be difficult[,] what I propose is right and has popular 
> support.

At least in the US, I'm not so sure that the general public sees the
importance or usefulness of things such as access to source code or
the selection of well-documented, free/open file formats. For many
(all?) of us on this list, we may personally feel as though such
policies are self-evident, but that is not the case for so many of our
neighbors in meatspace.

One of the reasons why I'm working hard on Document Freedom Day this
year (apologies for this shameless plug) is because I think that we've
got to start with small tidbits such as the intrinsic, personal
benefits of having access to one's own data, and build upon that
starting point as the basis for greater education and acceptance.

> Things that never enter the public domain, such as non free software and
> encrypted media, do not deserve copyright.

I'm pretty sure that non-free software would enter the public domain
when the copyright term runs out. You might not have the source code,
but that's a different matter.

Encrypted media is another kettle of fish. Again, theoretically the
squishy center of content inside the DRM would fall into the public
domain, however one would have to ask the LoC for an exception to the
DMCA in order to legally circumvent the DRM.

> They are an affront to the public
> and everyone hates them.

Everyone on this list, or *everyone* ? If change is desired, we need
to have a solid, believable plan to sell to everyone out there who's
buying diapers and paying a mortgage based on income from proprietary
software and DRM'd media. It's not going to be enough for us to tell
people and societies they need to change. We need to be holding the
torch and lighting the path forward.

> If the public were to understand software freedom,
> it would be an easier thing to accomplish.

Indubitably, but that requires education! We need packs of information
we can hand to teachers, educators, homeschoolers, and retirees. The
material needs to be crisp, clean, intelligent, have a
theme/uniformity, and use accessible language.

> The Pirate Party is having some success with copyright reform based on
> overwhelming public sentiment.  Talk to your local Pirates!

Will there be many at LibrePlanet? It would be great to hear policy
positions, etc...


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