[sf-lug] mastering CDs in bulk for Software Freedom Day

Larry Cafiero larry.cafiero at gmail.com
Mon Aug 31 08:20:10 PDT 2009

On Mon, Aug 31, 2009 at 2:04 AM, Rick Moen <rick at linuxmafia.com> wrote:

> Quoting Grant Bowman (grantbow at gmail.com):
> > I respectfully disagree with your conclusion.
> Everyone should have a few opinions.  (In fact, it might be worthwhile to
> collect the whole set.  ;->  )
> > Assumptions about various "users" can bring one to different
> > conclusions.
> [snip]
> I read that entire set of paragraphs pretty carefully.  I note that none
> of it had anything particularly to do with the preceding discussion.
> (Honest, I really am trying to read with proper context and attention.)
> > While I respect your gut about many topics (as you might already
> > know), I trust that 50 years of research might also be helpful in some
> > ways if it is directly applicable.  Are you saying you don't believe
> > that Open Source software can be categorized as a technical innovation
> > from a societal perspective?
> Not at all.  That question suggests that you didn't follow what I said.
> I said that the incredibly diverse fields of endeavour have entirely
> different fundamental problems, and therefore I tend to have extreme
> starting skepticism towards any purported common thread among them, and
> instead expect handwaving bullshit.
> Sameer didn't mention "free culture" in the cited paragraph, so I cannot
> fairly complain that he lumped that among the others.  (I'm pretty sure
> he did throw it in, further down in his rather hand-wavey posting,
> however.)  But let's use it as an example of how this
> compare-things-with-different-fundamental-problems habit tends to go
> wrong.  I hear people say "Oh, free culture is an extension of free
> software" -- but the problems are entirely different.  With free
> culture, the problem addressed is ability to remix and republish.  With
> free software, the problem addressed is ability to fork and reuse for
> any purpose.  That is why, to the perennial surprise of free-software
> people, 4 out of the 6 Creative Commons licences are _proprietary_ --
> because the right to fork and reuse for any purpose is not the
> fundamental problem addressed.
> Anyhow, all I was saying, in what you responded to, was that when I see
> people trying to draw a common thread across a half-dozen fields of
> endeavour with vastly different fundamental problems, my initial gut
> reaction -- my expectation -- is that all I'm going to end up seeing is
> handwaving bullshit.
> > Users care about their data.
> Not so much.  They _should_, but they don't _act_ as if they care about
> their data.
> Kindly ask the next ten people who bring MS-Windows machines to Linux
> installfests, who nervously ask to be set up for dual-boot, what
> backups they have.  Collect the answers, and then, kindly tell me
> again with a straight face that they care about their data.
> > If users use software that is Open Source and can read legacy formats,
> > don't you think this is progress?
> First of all, experience suggests that MS-Windows users who are given
> free-of-charge CD-ROMs of open source[1] MS-Windows software will
> overwhelmingly have absolutely no appreciation whatsoever for the fact
> that it is open source, but rather only for it being free of charge.
> Second, as noted upthread already, you are not asking the relevant
> question.  The relevant question is not whether you're creating
> progress, but rather whether considerably _more_ progress cannot be
> brought about by applying the same money and time elsewhere.  I think on
> the basis of my own long experience that it's abundantly clear that
> handing out OpenDisc copies to MS-Windows users is a really poor and
> ineffective use of that time and money.
> > Whether people realize the value in the short term or long term
> > varies, however taking this step absolutely removes a huge factor when
> > considering switching from Windows to Linux.  If they can switch their
> > OS and use the same applications (i.e. Open Office, Firefox, Gimp,
> > etc.) they are far more likely to consider switching, don't you think?
> Seventeen years of exposure to this line of advocacy concerning handing
> out free-of-charge MS-Windows software at one's own expense in time and
> money, suggests that it's bullshit:  Overwhelmingly they simply don't.
> And, more to the immediate point, the time and money are far more
> effectively spent elsewhere.
> > > And, by the way, you have no hope whatsoever of getting across the
> > > concept ...
> >
> > No hope?  Seems a little bit of a stretch, though it would be more
> > difficult.
> I think my meaning should have been abundantly clear.  A deliberate
> choice of incompetent marketing terminology shoots in the foot one's own
> ability to communicate to the target audience at all.
> [1] I'm sorry, but why are you treating "open source" as a proper noun
> in this context?  It isn't one.
> _______________________________________________
> sf-lug mailing list
> sf-lug at linuxmafia.com
> http://linuxmafia.com/mailman/listinfo/sf-lug
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://linuxmafia.com/pipermail/sf-lug/attachments/20090831/47621235/attachment.html>

More information about the sf-lug mailing list