[pp.int.general] UK action idea: in schools
rms at gnu.org
Fri Nov 19 22:53:58 CET 2010
There is absolutely no need to push anything illegal within a "sharing
is good" campaign.
Even if you could, that wouldn't even necessarily meet the goal.
You can as well show why it's favorable to use open content licenses
such as Creative Commons, GPL, ...
It is good to use those licenses, but talking about them as "open content"
has two major problems.
* It uses the term "open". That weak term was chosen specifically to
avoid the central ethical issue that concerns us: is sharing good or
bad? We need to raise that issue whenever it is pertinent; to avoid
it is self-defeating.
* It stretches the term "open", further weakening it, by applying it
to licenses such as CC-ND and CC-NC that don't permit commercisal
publication of modified versions.
The tencency towards becoming ever weaker is inherent in the word
It is good to encourage people to apply these licences, but that
doesn't respond to the issue at hand. The issue is that our
adversaries want to teach the public that sharing is wrong unless some
owner gives "authorization". Our mission is to reject that position
and vanquish it. If we fail to challenge the validity of that
position, we have defeated ourselves.
And you can even still state at the end (or beginning): "Even though'
the current situation is extremely questionable, we don't want you to
get into legal problems. So please abstain from sharing non-open
Aside from the two problems noted above with "open", this has an even
worse problem. To urge people to avoid forbidden sharing is support
for the adversary, no matter what reason might be given.
President, Free Software Foundation
51 Franklin St
Boston MA 02110
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