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- To: linux-delhi@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Subject: free software
- From: Raju Mathur <raju@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Wed, 28 Feb 2001 10:58:49 +0530 (IST)
- Cc: "Monica Narula" <monica@xxxxxxxxx>, "Jeebesh bagchi" <jeebesh@xxxxxxxxx>, "Shuddhabrata Sengupta" <shuddha@xxxxxxxxx>, "Ravi Sundaram" <ravis@xxxxxxxxx>, "Ravi Vasudevan" <raviv@xxxxxxxxx>, "Saumya Gupta" <sgupta@xxxxxxxxx>, "Supreet Sethi" <supreet@xxxxxxxxx>, "Pankaj Kaushal" <pankaj@xxxxxxxxx>, "Ruchika Agarwal" <ruchika@xxxxxxxxx>, "Ravikant" <ravikant@xxxxxxxxx>, "Deepu Sharan" <sharan@xxxxxxxxx>, "Aditya Nigam" <aditya@xxxxxxxxx>
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- Reply-to: raju@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
To some extent I agree with your reading that the free software
movement only advocates the free sharing of intellectual property, not
of tangible property.
Speaking for myself, I have nothing against the accumulation of wealth
as long as that wealth cannot be shared without diminishing the owners
share. If it can, please feel free to share it. For example, I
participate in a distributed supercomputing project in the background
on my home computer. This project (SETI@Home,
http://setiathome.ssl.berkeley.edu/) is scanning the skies for radio
signals from extra-terrestrial intelligences and distributing the
actual seperation of signal from noise to millions of PC's over the
Internet. I run it on my computer since:
- The slowdown I experience from running it is trivial.
- I believe that my computer is wasting 90% or more of its cycles
while I'm working on it, and those cycles can go into doing something
- I believe in ETI :-) though whether they'll evidence themselves as
radio signals across space or some other means is debatable.
As you can see, it costs me nothing (or a very trivial amount) to
share my computer over the Internet, while it does increase the amount
of computing power available to this project.
I feel that you are ignoring the basic tenet of the free software
movement -- sharing software in particular (and IP in general)
increases the amount of wealth in the world. That is not true of any
other kind of sharing. If it were possible to share Rs. 100 in such a
way that it becomes Rs. 200, I'd be glad to take up that movement too,
but unfortunately the people who do that today are called cheats, and
either put behind bars or elected to high office ;-)
>>>>> "Joy" == Naksi Ink <naksink@xxxxxxxx> writes:
Joy> I have some problem regarding the argument raised against the
Joy> proprietary model of software. The argument is, information
Joy> or knowledge never diminishes as it is shared. So it can be
Joy> shared freely and should be non-proprietary. It means this
Joy> argument establishes the argument for the proprietary model
Joy> of such commodities, which are perished with usage and
Joy> consumption. It provides legitimation to the whole model of
Joy> market economy, which is based on proprietorship. The
Joy> argument of non-proprietary software movement basically
Joy> establishes the supremacy of proprietary model and defines
Joy> itself as an exception rather than upholding a holistic
Joy> attitude towards all the commodities used by mankind.
Joy> This argument raised by custodian of free-software community
Joy> tries to single out themselves from the rest of the society
Joy> as a special case. It doesn?t challenge the accumulation and
Joy> protection of wealth. Rather exploits the material limitation
Joy> of other commodities for its expansion and growth.
Joy> Indirectly it actually opposes the free availability and
Joy> distribution of perishable commodities and justifies the
Joy> exploitive nature of market economy. I find that theory very
Joy> selfish theory. It actually means if knowledge diminishes by
Joy> sharing they will never share it!!
Joy> Their theory doesn?t guarantee against the blockage of
Joy> knowledge to protect the power acquired through control over
Joy> knowledge. Because according to the theory if anything
Joy> diminishes as a result of sharing they are not going to do
Joy> it. I am raising this point because certain kind of knowledge
Joy> requires certain kind of access, which is dependent on wealth
Joy> and power. Knowledge is not only matter of information but
Joy> also matter of infrastructure. Infrastructure is a
Joy> perishable commodity. In many cases just availability of
Joy> books or CD does not help, instruments and hardware are
Joy> extremely important which they think should be proprietary
Joy> because those things are perishable. This means they want
Joy> and at the same time they don?t want free distribution of
Joy> knowledge!! It looks as if it demands respectable status of
Joy> non-criminal act within the value system of market economy.
Joy> Rather I recommend that argument might be, every commodity
Joy> ideally should be freely available and non-proprietary but in
Joy> market economy something like certain form of information can
Joy> only be circulated freely because it does not require
Joy> accumulation of wealth to reproduce.
Joy> My concern is free software movement should not be seen and
Joy> identified as isolated event with which larger section of the
Joy> community can not communicate. Rather it should be seen as a
Joy> part of larger social consciousness.
Joy> One more important point I would like to discuss. If we
Joy> condemn cracking it means we are condemning stealing. Though
Joy> stealing might not be a justifiable act and as I am not
Joy> elaborating but I would like to put some light on the fact
Joy> that we have lots of facts and fictions which try to examine
Joy> the act of stealing. Some time they even end up justifying
Joy> it! We have seen lots of Hindi films and some stories and
Joy> novels on this subject. I just want to say we can see the
Joy> word and act of cracking more critically rather than
Joy> condemning it just by saying ?hacking is not cracking?. As
Joy> sometime we try to see software piracy critically.
Joy> Joy 27.02.2001,1.37A.M.
Joy> ------------------------------------------------ An alpha
Joy> version of a web based tool to manage your subscription with
Joy> this mailing list is at
Raju Mathur raju@xxxxxxxxxxxxx http://kandalaya.org/