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Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Why contains in nonfree that's not ethical?

From: Will Hill
Subject: Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Why contains in nonfree that's not ethical?
Date: Tue, 17 Mar 2015 08:57:36 -0500
User-agent: KMail/1.9.10 (enterprise35 0.20100827.1168748)

On Monday 16 March 2015, Adam Bolte wrote:
> If you talk to people on the street, I suspect they'll all say
> something similar to what you have heard - that they care about
> privacy issues. But when you actually look at what they are doing, I
> doubt most of them are doing anything about for themselves.
> Convenience, ease and efficiency takes priority with it's an option
> for their work-flow.

The Cory Doctorow test is to ask them if they will give you their email 
address and password.  You can promise you don't care what's going on in 
their life, that you won't interfere with their mail delivery, etc, but no 
one will give it to you.  

This proves people care but don't know how to protect themselves from 
predatory monopolists.  

It's up to people who both care and know to do something about the problem.  
People want answers and they flow into them when they find them.  The best 
solution is for the community to provide services.  Municipal networks, email 
hosted by local groups like schools or clubs, and local IT people 
recommending and servicing free software.  

Coercive monopolists know very well how to create choke points that force us 
into their power.  Companies like Microsoft target "influencers" and get them 
to use their software because they know it will force hundreds or thousands 
of other people to buy the same.  Cable, telco and broadcast monopolies are 
even worse. 

Objections sometimes work and we are creating a culture that considers non 
free software rude.  Often you will be the customer and the offender is an 
organization that's trying to serve you.  We can, for example, get rid of 
Word documents by telling people about the problems and recommending formats 
that work.  My back quickly learned that relying on Excel format was a bad 
idea because many people complained.  The advent of cell phones has made this 
easier because Microsoft does not work there.  This is a battle that's been 
going on for thirty years and people are tired of it.  It's one of the 
reasons I think they are tired of software owners, even if they don't 
understand the problem completely.  

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