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Re: [O] BeOrg

From: Ilya Shlyakhter
Subject: Re: [O] BeOrg
Date: Tue, 2 Jan 2018 21:43:22 -0500

"as a GNU package, we're not allowed to mention proprietary software"
-- how is that consistent with GNU prominently distributing Emacs for
Windows from its own website?  I think this shows that the guideline
is not absolute.  And it's specifically phrased as a guideline
("should"), not as a requirement.

To _mention_ is not the same as to _endorse_.  One can mention a
non-free program, along with a link to GNU's reasoning against such
programs, and let users decide.  Deciding for them is paternalistic.
It also looks like simple protectionism: rather than writing a free
program superior to the non-free one, mentioning both and letting
users decide, we'll just hide the non-free one.

I don't see why not to write beOrg at all is perfectly ethical, but to
write it without making it free is unethical.  What freedoms does a
non-existing program give users?

On Tue, Jan 2, 2018 at 9:06 PM, Ian Dunn <address@hidden> wrote:
>>>>>> "Peter" == Peter Davis <address@hidden> writes:
>     Peter> If we refuse to provide useful information just because it
>     Peter> violates some purist idea of what is or is not acceptably
>     Peter> unencumbered, then we’re just denying users potential helpful
>     Peter> capabilities that may make the difference between using
>     Peter> org-mode or abandoning it completely in favor of some
>     Peter> commercial, cross-platform solution.
> Nicolas mentioned that as a GNU package, we're not allowed to mention
> proprietary software[1].  My understanding is that the reasoning behind
> this is that we don't want to appear to endorse proprietary software.
> The GNU project finds proprietary software unethical, so they will not
> see it as providing useful information, but endorsing an unethical
> solution.
> Peter, I understand your reasoning; the LGPL was designed specifically
> for this purpose, i.e. allowing a non-free solution built upon a free
> one.  However, I don't believe we should encourage use of such solutions
> without evidence that people are turned away from Org mode because of a
> mobile solution they don't like.
> [1] https://www.gnu.org/prep/standards/html_node/References.html#References
> --
> Ian Dunn

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