EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

06.01.08

Bringing Free Software Values Back: Please Welcome Equitable Open Source

Posted in Free/Libre Software, Google, GPL, Microsoft, SUN at 12:10 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The open source validity index

MilkingTheGnu.org (MTG) has just officially announced a new project/initiative. It is called Equitable Open Source (EOS).

EOS comes after a recent suggestion which was brought up and cited very broadly by anxious or curious members of the open source crowd. To give a rough idea of what it might be all about, here is part a comment that I left in MTG’s blog just over a week ago:


Over the past few years I’ve learned, based on very many articles and rants, which companies are open source/FS fakers and which ones are not. That’s one index we/you could set up.

Equitable Open SourceAnother one that comes to mind is vendors (software *and* hardware) that are Linux-hostile/friendly.

That first index [free software credibility index] has become quite a popular one for those who do not know who’s who. In the earlier days I used to just ask PJ, who knew the journalists’ history.

I add not based on single incident[s], but based on recurring patterns (like gauging speed to identify speedy drivers based only on a *sample* of incidents).


MTG, which seems to be looking into a Wiki to sort this out, explains the rationale for this.

…this also resulted in a situation where the balance of power has somewhat shifted from community-centric to commercial-induced interests.

And since commercial interests don’t always correspond (why would they?) to the spirit and the principles of free and open source software, there is a need to balance more equitably commercial and community interests through new initiatives.

There are many examples of the problem that MTG is aiming to address. To give 2 examples which were posted in Tux Machines a few hours ago (both related to Mozilla Firefox):

Are your Firefox extensions proprietary software?

In the last-post, I went through the most popular Firefox extensions and talked about whether they were good ideas or not. However, it seems that not a lot of people think about another side to this, i.e. what are your Firefox extensions licenced under?

It turns out that a lot of the extensions available through Firefox are not free/open source software at all.

One example is the StumbleUpon Extension.

[...]

For example, here are five popular extensions that are free software/open source:

* Firebug: Mozilla Public License 1.1
* Flashblock: Mozilla Triple Licence (MPL 1.1/GPL 2.0/LGPL 2.1)
* AdblockPlus: Mozilla Public License 1.1
* FireGPG: Mozilla Triple Licence (MPL 1.1/GPL 2.0/LGPL 2.1)
* NoScript: GPL

Eventually, after a bit of digging and Googling, I found their Toolbar-License and guess what? Yes you guessed it, it is proprietary software. So if you want to run free software/open source, then get it off your system now!

Firefox 3 RC1 forces you agree to EULA before usage

While Mozilla has had a EULA since Firefox 1.5 or so they have never brazenly shoved it into the end-user’s face until now. It immediately set me on edge because this behavior is indicative of proprietary software and not something you would expect to see when using something that is open source.

It seems likely, based on MTG’s previous and recent admission, that this Equitable Open Source push was inspired by an index that we have in this Web site.

It will be a pleasure to have a reference (and service) such as that which MTG tries to establish. It comes at a good time because only an hour ago one reader reminded us of Sun’s likely motives in entering “open source”.

Another reader has been repeatedly suggesting that we set up the IRC channel, #boycottnovell, now that the site attracts enough people to drive well over a gigabyte in traffic per day.

Related readings:

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Site Focus for The Remainder of the Year

    What we plan for the rest of 2014 and why



  2. Links 20/4/2014: EFF FOSS, Easter Drone Strikes, Copyright Industry Fear of Google

    Links for the day



  3. Links 19/4/2014: Slow Easter News Day

    Links for the day



  4. Links 18/4/2014: New KDE, Kubuntu, and More

    Links for the day



  5. Some Perspective on Heartbleed®

    Our views on the whole Heartbleed® bonanza, which seems like partly a PR stunt (for multiple stakeholders)



  6. Microsoft is Leaving Windows -- Including Vista 8.1 -- Vulnerable to Non-Government Crackers, Not Only to NSA

    Microsoft makes it ever more evident that securing users of Windows is not at all a priority, and perhaps not even a desire



  7. Links 17/4/2014: Android RDP, New Ubuntu, RHEL 7 Milestone

    Links for the day



  8. Racing to 1984: Mass Surveillance, Cracking, 'Targeted' Assassinations, and Illegal Torture

    Links for the day



  9. More Microsoft Subsidies to Patent Troll Intellectual Ventures

    Microsoft hands money to Bill Gates' close friend who is the world's largest patent troll



  10. Aiding Microsoft Under the Disguise of 'Pro-FOSS'

    Not everything which is FOSS necessary becomes, by virtue of existence, a positive contribution, as we are constantly reminded by projects that help proprietary software and/or restrictions get a strong grip on FOSS



  11. Links 16/4/2014: Red Hat PR, Ubuntu LTS Imminent

    Links for the day



  12. Links 15/4/2014: Lots of PCLinuxOS Releases, Ukraine Updates

    Links for the day



  13. Apple and Microsoft Actively Lobbying Against Patent Reform in the US

    Apple and Microsoft are reportedly intervening/interfering with US law in order to ensure that the law is Free/libre software-hostile



  14. Lawsuit by Microsoft Shareholder Targets Fine for Crimes Rather Than the Crimes Themselves

    A new lawsuit by a Microsoft shareholder shows everything that's wrong with today's model of accountability, where those who are responsible for crimes are accused of not avoiding fines rather than committing the crimes



  15. Public Institutions Must Dump PRISM-Associated Software

    Another reminder that taxpayers-subsidised services should refuse, as a matter of principle, to pay anything for -- let alone deploy -- proprietary software with back doors



  16. GNU/Linux News: The Opportunities Amid XP EOL

    Links for the day



  17. Microsoft Gets Its Money's Worth From Xamarin: PlayStation 4 Now Polluted by Microsoft

    The Trojan horse of Microsoft, Xamarin, is pushing .NET into Microsoft's console competitor



  18. After Brendan Eich Comes Chris Beard

    Having removed Brendan Eich using bullying and blackmail tactics, his foes inside Mozilla achieved too little as we have yet another man (coming from inside Mozilla) acting as CEO



  19. Healthcare News: Free Software in Health, Humanitarian Causes

    Links for the day



  20. Links 14/4/2014: MakuluLinux, Many Games, More Privacy News and Pulitzer Prize for NSA Revelations

    Links for the day



  21. TechBytes Episode 87: Catching up With Surveillance (NSA, GCHQ et al.)

    The first audio episode in a very long time covers some of the latest happenings when it comes to privacy and, contrariwise, mass surveillance



  22. Server News: KVM, ElasticHosts, Other GNU/Linux Items, and Open Network Linux

    Links for the day



  23. Hardware News: Freedom, Modding, Hackability on the Rise

    Links for the day



  24. Distributions News: GNU/Linux Distros

    Links for the day



  25. GNOME News: Financial Issues, Mutter-Wayland, West Coast Summit, Community Participation

    Links for the day



  26. KDE News: Kubuntu at the Centre Again KDE Applications Updated

    Links for the day



  27. Techrights Rising

    Effective immediately, Techrights will do what it takes to bring back old volume and pace of publishing



  28. Links: Surveillance, Intervention, Torture and Drones

    Links for the day



  29. Mobile Linux Not Just Android: Jolla, WebOS, and Firefox OS News

    Links for the day



  30. Google's Linux Revolution: New Gains for Android, Chrome OS (GNU/Linux)

    Links for the day


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts