Richard M. Stallman liked GetGNULinux! - What happened in LibreMeeting
As expected, every time I had a chance, I talked about GLM in order to recruit collaborators as well as spread the word about it. I got some people willing to help us out in Spain.
On the other hand, in the round of questions for the conference of RMS, I had the right to speak and said that I'm part of an organisation that spreads the free software philosophy amongst everyday computer users mainly through our two main projects, GetGNULinux and 3DollarSoftware (newly launched)... And he immediately said that it sounds very interesting and that he wanted to talk about it after the conference. (BTW, I was so excited that I sent an SMS to Olivier, perhaps I woke him up... sorry Olivier!).
Then I had an improvised meeting with RMS to discuss about GNU/Linux Matters for +30 minutes. Overall, he really liked our initiative and thanked us for it, but he disliked that we also use "Linux" and that we promote non-fully-free distros, as expected. During the meeting, I wrote down his suggestions. Here they are:
- Before seeing GGL, he told me that he's only seen MakeTheMove.net and liked the structure, but disliked other things like the use of "Linux", "open source" and mainly that their main reason to make the switch was not freedom. He also said that we might pick up some ideas from that site.
- We should only use "GNU/Linux" from the beginning. He said that once you teach a term, it's hard to correct it later; It's better to use the right term from the beginning.
- We should only promote fully free distros.
- We should not use the (r) sign after Windows, it's a sign of respect.
- 3DollarSoftware sounds good, but 3DollarAddiction sounds better because it describes better what Microsoft wants.
- We might rephrase "You have an alternative to breaking the law" by stating that this law doesn't deserve to be obeyed and that sharing software shouldn't be something bad, despite this is the current reality.
- We should rephrase "If you pay so much for software, you should at least decide what you can do with it" by something like "A legal copy of Windows is expensive, but what do you really get?"... Because it doesn't really matter whether it was expensive.
- We shouldn't encourage people to install GNU/Linux by themselves because it's not easy. Instead we should encourage them to grab a friend (or someone in the FS community) and ask him to install "GNU with Linux".
- I mentioned our article on misunderstanding free software, but he couldn't read it. However, he suggested me to also make clear that the software industry has always made software according to what people needs/asks, so it's another reason on why it's not going to disappear.
- When we're going to refute something Microsoft (for example) say, we shouldn't address such an statement directly... First we should analyse its foundations to find out whether they're really valid. If we address their statements directly, we're accepting their foundations are valid and then it will hard to explain clearly why such statements are wrong.
- We might use the Bill's quote along with a message related to the fact that Microsoft wants us to get addicted to their software (as explained above).
- When we talk about "piracy" we should clearly state that we disagree with that usage of the word "piracy": Piracy is attack boats and we talk about sharing... These two ideas have nothing to do; it's just absurd.
- We should into account this article http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/words-to-avoid.html . In addition to "Linux", he didn't complained about the way we use a given word (AFAIR); he just said so "just in case"...
- A good idea to make people want to make the switch, is to make them see that we do understand their priorities (what they need the software for), but Freedom is above any other priority. He asked me to emphasise that "but".
- RMS said that it would be great if we could use an image the FSF just created (I couldn't see it, though).
(he could only see 3-4 webpages though)
What I think on his suggestions:
- He made me change my mind about the use of "Linux" and "GNU/Linux" in the association. I think we should explain that the operating system is really called "GNU/Linux" from the beginning and then stick to "GNU/Linux".
- Promoting only fully-free-distros is something I wouldn't like to do. I told him that I see no problem on promoting non-fully-free distros as an step forward, not as the goal itself - taking advance of a privative software to reach for a huge objective for the FS movement is something they did when they were using UNIX to make GNU. He seemed to partially agree with me and said that it might end that way, or might not; there's no guarantee we'll win that way. My conclusion? I think we should add a fully free distro (like gnewsense) and clearly state that the rest of the promoted distros are not fully free in the mean time because they contain some software critical to run well with many pieces of hardware, thus, all of your current hardware might not work with the fully free distro (however, you might prefer to replace a piece of hardware rather than giving away your freedom... If for some reason you cannot replace the piece of hardware that doesn't work, then you should really install one of the non-fully-free distros).
- Asking someone to install GNU/Linux: I think we shouldn't encourage them to grab a someone and ask him to install the system, but simply suggest them to do so. In the end, we'll publish the "First Steps in GNU/Linux" (RMS liked this too, BTW).
- I don't know if we should remove the (r) sign after "Windows".
- IMO, 3DollarAddiction sounds good too (neither better nor worse).
- "This law doesn't deserve to be obeyed": I agree, but it's risky to say so, IMO.
- I agree with the rest.
He provided me with a contact card and asked me to let him know what happened with this because he's really interested on this project.
I also talked about Olivier and he said that he would like to talk to Olivier too. He'll be in Paris on May 18th and he's willing to talk to Olivier.
Great news, right? I thought our project was going to be a polemic topic (because of "Linux" and the promoted distros).
PS: I was extremely happy when I saw the badge they gave me: It contained "GNU/Linux Matters". This is the first time I see it printed on something different from a common paper.
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