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Re: Your old articles

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  • Shlomi Fish
    Hi Dr. Stallman, I apologise for the late response. ... Well, will you be able to share what these two promises that you request are, just for the record?
    Message 1 of 4 , Apr 17 1:13 AM
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      Hi Dr. Stallman,

      I apologise for the late response.

      On Monday 04 Apr 2011 08:37:43 Richard Stallman wrote:
      > On a different note: if humanly possible, I'd like to conduct an online
      > interview with you regarding several questions I have in mind
      > (including a . I will publish it here:
      >
      > You already declined to make the two promises that I always request
      > for an interview, so I said no.

      Well, will you be able to share what these two promises that you request are,
      just for the record? Furthermore, if you are not going to give me an
      interview, will you be so kind as to reply to my original questions, namely:

      [ Questions ]

      In any case, in this thread on the Creative Commons mailing list:

      http://lists.ibiblio.org/pipermail/cc-community/2011-March/006049.html

      We've been speculating about your opinion (and the FSF's official stance)
      about the licensing of non-software cultural/artistic/media works. As a
      result, I would be happy if you can answer the following questions, which I
      would like to share with the mailing list and possibly post them on one of my
      weblogs (with your permission).

      Here goes:

      1. I know you believe that non-free, public, software (which Joel Spolsky
      calls "shrinkwrap" software here -
      http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/FiveWorlds.html ) that is not free or
      even not entirely free, is illegitimate and immoral. However, do you believe
      that in an ideal world, such software should be illegal?

      Alternatively, do you think the law should allow non-free software to be
      marketed (given some natural limitations on which restrictions would be held
      as legal and valid.) and protected, while still allowing competition from free
      software and naturaly advocacy against the use of non-free software?

      2. Do you believe that one can prevent commercial use and commercial
      redistribution (i.e: mass selling for a profit) of their otherwise publicly
      available artwork? (Similar to the -nc variants of the Creative Commons
      licences.)

      3. Do you believe that one can completely prevent derivative works of one's
      otherwise public artwork? (Similar to the -nd variants of the Creative Commons
      licences.).

      4. In this Slashdot.org feature:

      http://developers.slashdot.org/story/05/01/09/191257/

      you were quoted as saying that:

      [quote]
      What is the future of free software development for games? Is it possible?
      Will the games ever equal or surpass their proprietary competitors? Why should
      we care? After thoroughly researching the free and open source software model,
      and interviewing both indie and free software game developers, author Matt
      Barton decided that the future is indeed very bright. Stallman is quoted here
      saying that game engines should be free, but approves of the notion that
      graphics, music, and stories could all be separate and treated differently
      (i.e., "Non-Free.")"
      [/quote]

      Can you confirm this?

      [ / Questions ]

      Finally, I should note that the second version of my "Human Hacking Field
      Guide" story, which includes the correct passage introducing you, is now alive
      at:

      http://www.shlomifish.org/humour/human-hacking/#version_2

      Thanks for the useful input. I'm also working on this, but it will take some
      time to finalise:

      http://www.shlomifish.org/philosophy/foss-other-beasts/version-3/

      Regards,

      Shlomi Fish

      --
      -----------------------------------------------------------------
      Shlomi Fish http://www.shlomifish.org/
      "The Human Hacking Field Guide" - http://shlom.in/hhfg

      If Botticelli were alive today, he'd be working for Vogue.
      -- http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Peter_Ustinov

      Please reply to list if it's a mailing list post - http://shlom.in/reply .
    • Nadav Har'El
      ... Shlomi, if you want someone to do you a favor (answer your questions), why do you try so hard to alienate him? Why CC your discussion to a public mailing
      Message 2 of 4 , Apr 17 6:42 AM
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        On Sun, Apr 17, 2011, Shlomi Fish wrote about "[hackers-il] Re: Your old articles":
        > On Monday 04 Apr 2011 08:37:43 Richard Stallman wrote:
        > > You already declined to make the two promises that I always request
        > > for an interview, so I said no.
        >
        > Well, will you be able to share what these two promises that you request are,
        > just for the record? Furthermore, if you are not going to give me an

        Shlomi, if you want someone to do you a favor (answer your questions), why
        do you try so hard to alienate him? Why CC your discussion to a public mailing
        list? No, the line "I hope it's OK, as I don't see why this message should not
        be made public" doesn't make it any nicer to publish someone else's mail.

        About his "requests", I have no idea what he's referring to, as I didn't
        see all your correspondence, but I have a good guess: He's probably annoyed
        that you use the terms "Linux" instead of "GNU/Linux", and "Open Source"
        instead of "Free Software".

        If you don't understand why his requests are justified, let me give you an
        example: Imagine that some journalist from Al-Jazeerah (for example) comes
        to interview Netanyahu, and his first question is something about the
        "Zionist Occupation Army". It doesn't matter that this (jeish alichtilal
        assayuni) is the term they use for our army - Netanyahu would object to this
        term, and terminate the interview immediately. If the journalist wants to
        get an answer out of him, he should try to use more neutral terms which his
        interviewee would not find offensive - like, perhaps, "Israeli army".

        Like that hypothetical Al-Jazeerah journalist, you are free to use your
        favorite terms in other places - just don't use them when contacting people
        who are offended by the terms you prefer.

        > 1. I know you believe that non-free, public, software (which Joel Spolsky
        > calls "shrinkwrap" software here -
        > http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/FiveWorlds.html ) that is not free or
        > even not entirely free, is illegitimate and immoral. However, do you believe
        > that in an ideal world, such software should be illegal?

        The word "illegal" in this case could have two meanings. The first (which
        I doubt RMS would agree with) is that people who try to sell Shrink-Wrapped
        software should be put in jail. The second - which I'd guess RMS would
        prefer - is shrink-wrap will not be against the law, but simply unsupported
        by the law: That the law will give makers of software and hardware less
        "teeth" to bully clients with - no DMCA, unenforcable "shrink wrap licenses"
        and so on.

        > 2. Do you believe that one can prevent commercial use and commercial
        > redistribution (i.e: mass selling for a profit) of their otherwise publicly
        > available artwork? (Similar to the -nc variants of the Creative Commons
        > licences.)

        Why are you asking RMS this?
        And are you asking this legally (will the -nc license "stick" in court) or
        morally (is it a good idea)?

        > 3. Do you believe that one can completely prevent derivative works of one's
        > otherwise public artwork? (Similar to the -nd variants of the Creative Commons
        > licences.).

        Again, why are you asking RMS about CC licenses? And are you asking
        legally or philosophically?

        Clearly, RMS thinks it's *wrong* to prevent derivative works. The GPL and GFDL
        are all about allowing derivative works. But there's an interesting exception -
        the GFDL has the option of "invariant sections" - sections which cannot be
        modified. It seems that RMS finds a slightly lesser value in allowing
        modifications to text (and perhaps other forms of artistic expression) than
        he finds in modification of software (which has a functional value, it's
        not just a piece of art).


        --
        Nadav Har'El | Sunday, Apr 17 2011, 13 Nisan 5771
        nyh@... |-----------------------------------------
        Phone +972-523-790466, ICQ 13349191 |The 3 stages of sex: Tri-weekly, try
        http://nadav.harel.org.il |weekly, try weakly.
      • Shlomi Fish
        Hi Nadav, ... Well, RMS CCed his messages to Hackers-IL as well, and my point in doing that is to have a record of our correspondence and his opinion. ... I
        Message 3 of 4 , Apr 17 10:18 AM
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          Hi Nadav,

          On Sunday 17 Apr 2011 16:42:48 Nadav Har'El wrote:
          > On Sun, Apr 17, 2011, Shlomi Fish wrote about "[hackers-il] Re: Your old
          articles":
          > > On Monday 04 Apr 2011 08:37:43 Richard Stallman wrote:
          > > > You already declined to make the two promises that I always request
          > > > for an interview, so I said no.
          > >
          > > Well, will you be able to share what these two promises that you request
          > > are, just for the record? Furthermore, if you are not going to give me
          > > an
          >
          > Shlomi, if you want someone to do you a favor (answer your questions), why
          > do you try so hard to alienate him? Why CC your discussion to a public
          > mailing list? No, the line "I hope it's OK, as I don't see why this
          > message should not be made public" doesn't make it any nicer to publish
          > someone else's mail.

          Well, RMS CCed his messages to Hackers-IL as well, and my point in doing that
          is to have a record of our correspondence and his opinion.

          >
          > About his "requests", I have no idea what he's referring to, as I didn't
          > see all your correspondence, but I have a good guess: He's probably annoyed
          > that you use the terms "Linux" instead of "GNU/Linux", and "Open Source"
          > instead of "Free Software".

          I have only used them in essays and blog posts I've written, which were not
          intended for him in particular. During my recent correspondence with him, I
          made sure to only use the FSF-blessed terminology with him. What I've written
          on my home site and weblogs elsewhere for public consumption should be none of
          his concern.

          >
          > If you don't understand why his requests are justified, let me give you an
          > example: Imagine that some journalist from Al-Jazeerah (for example) comes
          > to interview Netanyahu, and his first question is something about the
          > "Zionist Occupation Army". It doesn't matter that this (jeish alichtilal
          > assayuni) is the term they use for our army - Netanyahu would object to
          > this term, and terminate the interview immediately. If the journalist
          > wants to get an answer out of him, he should try to use more neutral terms
          > which his interviewee would not find offensive - like, perhaps, "Israeli
          > army".
          >
          > Like that hypothetical Al-Jazeerah journalist, you are free to use your
          > favorite terms in other places - just don't use them when contacting people
          > who are offended by the terms you prefer.

          I did exactly that. :-)

          >
          > > 1. I know you believe that non-free, public, software (which Joel Spolsky
          > > calls "shrinkwrap" software here -
          > > http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/FiveWorlds.html ) that is not free
          > > or even not entirely free, is illegitimate and immoral. However, do you
          > > believe that in an ideal world, such software should be illegal?
          >
          > The word "illegal" in this case could have two meanings. The first (which
          > I doubt RMS would agree with) is that people who try to sell Shrink-Wrapped
          > software should be put in jail. The second - which I'd guess RMS would
          > prefer - is shrink-wrap will not be against the law, but simply unsupported
          > by the law: That the law will give makers of software and hardware less
          > "teeth" to bully clients with - no DMCA, unenforcable "shrink wrap
          > licenses" and so on.

          Well, I'm trying to get to Dr. Stallman's opinion of the matter, not what
          other people have interepreted that.

          >
          > > 2. Do you believe that one can prevent commercial use and commercial
          > > redistribution (i.e: mass selling for a profit) of their otherwise
          > > publicly available artwork? (Similar to the -nc variants of the Creative
          > > Commons licences.)
          >
          > Why are you asking RMS this?
          > And are you asking this legally (will the -nc license "stick" in court) or
          > morally (is it a good idea)?

          The "can" was indeed a misphrasing on my part (it should be a "should").
          Naturally, I know "not-for-commercial-use" licences are enforcable in court,
          but I was asking him if he thinks they are ethical.

          >
          > > 3. Do you believe that one can completely prevent derivative works of
          > > one's otherwise public artwork? (Similar to the -nd variants of the
          > > Creative Commons licences.).
          >
          > Again, why are you asking RMS about CC licenses? And are you asking
          > legally or philosophically?

          I'm trying to see if he approves of them. Some people say he approves of such
          non-free (but still possibly not 100% restricted) cultural works outside the
          realm of software. Other people claim that he thinks all cultural works (or
          possibly "content") should abide by the same guidelines of the Free Software
          Definition ( http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.html ).

          As a result, I'm trying to get to the bottom of his opinion.

          >
          > Clearly, RMS thinks it's *wrong* to prevent derivative works.

          In software perhaps, or in its documentation, but what about in essays, or
          images, or audio files, or video files, or animations or fictional stories or
          what not?

          I should note that here:
          http://news.slashdot.org/story/06/02/07/1733220/

          <QUOTE>
          "Richard Stallman has stated in an interview that he no longer supports
          Creative Commons licenses. In the interview carried on LinuxP2P.com, and which
          is largely about the P2P and DRM issues, Stallman ends by saying: 'I no longer
          endorse Creative Commons. I cannot endorse Creative Commons as a whole,
          because some of its licenses are unacceptable.' He suggests instead using the
          GPL for creative works."

          The crux of his argument is that, since he disagrees with some of the CC
          licenses, and people tend to lump them all together, he feels compelled to
          reject them all. What's your take? Are some Creative Commons licenses worth
          using, even if others aren't?
          </QUOTE>

          Since then, after the Creative Commons retracted
          http://creativecommons.org/licenses/devnations/2.0/ , I recall seeing
          something that he said he supports them again and now CC-by and CC-by-sa are
          listed under:

          http://www.gnu.org/licenses/license-list.html

          > The GPL and
          > GFDL are all about allowing derivative works.

          Yes, because that is their spirit. However, that does not mean that he
          believes that it is not acceptable to release one's work under a more
          restrictive licence, that does not allow derivative works. Even the text of
          the GPL can not be changed or misused because allowing people to change it
          will cause anarchy as many different licences claiming to be "The GNU General
          Public Licese".

          > But there's an interesting
          > exception - the GFDL has the option of "invariant sections" - sections
          > which cannot be modified. It seems that RMS finds a slightly lesser value
          > in allowing modifications to text (and perhaps other forms of artistic
          > expression) than he finds in modification of software (which has a
          > functional value, it's not just a piece of art).

          Agreed. My question is how he feels about people using CC licences with -nd
          and/or -nc for their own non-software needs.

          BTW, here is an amusing link:

          http://www.gplv4.org/

          Regards,

          Shlomi Fish

          --
          -----------------------------------------------------------------
          Shlomi Fish http://www.shlomifish.org/
          "Humanity" - Parody of Modern Life - http://shlom.in/humanity

          Chuck Norris refactors 10 million lines of Perl code before lunch.

          Please reply to list if it's a mailing list post - http://shlom.in/reply .
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