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Re: Practicality of GNU project and libre movement (Sagar Acharya : 2)

From: Roberto Beltran
Subject: Re: Practicality of GNU project and libre movement (Sagar Acharya : 2)
Date: Sat, 25 Jul 2020 17:28:37 +0000

> I agree though with previous points Free Software has effectively won.
> Everybody chooses MIT license nowdays.
> The question about next steps for me is: Do we start promoting for a
> copyleft world now?
> Because as far as I have seens FSF and GNU has been mainly for Free
> Software goal up until now.

Some things I think need to be worked on now:

- free software should be more of a kitchen table issue like climate change or 
immigration. Not everyone will agree obviously, but everyone should know it's a 
thing. This takes a lot of awareness campaigning and putting out a distilled 
message that doesn't use off-putting words (like "control", I say this from 

- Most tech professionals at least have some idea of open source, but there's 
also a lot of common misconceptions floating around. Having free software 
advocates around in borderline proprietary spaces helps a lot. You can be there 
in the conversation to say "you can't just release the source, it needs a 
license" or "no, the GPL isn't some scary virus" etc. a lot of stuff isn't 
malicious, just people not knowing better.

- there's already a crazy amount of free software and information out there but 
it's all kind of scattered online in a way. most people don't enjoy spending a 
lot of time on the computer learning about things like we do. this is where I 
think local advocacy groups could be super effective, because they can 
consolidate the best information for their communities and hand-hold new users 
until they are walking on their own. they can also do outreach to other local 
organizations and local governments.

- there are also critical areas that don't have particularly good free 
software. I'm not even talking about how GIMP doesn't have every little feature 
photoshop has. Like something I ran into was that I met a great UX/UI person 
that wanted to help out LibreMiami, but we realized there's not really a usable 
wire-framing tool. How are we going to have better interfaces for free software 
if I need to make excuses to UX/UI volunteers that the wire-framing software 
isn't even as good as something google puts out gratis? We can talk about the 
ideals all day, but if we can't thrive we just look pathetic to most people. 
There are other critical areas like this where we're not on solid ground. Each 
likely needs a unique solution.

Roberto Beltran

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