Why freedom matters to end users

I’m not a Debian Developer, so the recent Firefox/Icedove debacle hasn’t caught my attention that much. Basically I trust Debian to do the right thing. It seems in this case they are, again, doing the right thing.

GNOME’s Dave Neary says it’s ill-advised of Mozilla to care more about practicality and usability than freedom. He’s right! I read a few of the comments, and as so often people (i.e. users) say that freedom only matters to developers. That is simply not true! Please think about it! How does the freedom in source empower you to do what you want to do?

I’ve heard a few stories of people who are switching from Windows to Linux, but who can’t make a total switch because of iTunes. Since iTunes is closed (and defective by design) they have no choice but to keep Windows around in order to access the music they’ve bought. (It’s also higly ironical that Apple has written a program that keeps people using Windows.)

Consider what might happen if the Linux kernel accepted closed-source drivers.

Also, if you do care about freedom, then read this. Maybe it’ll help you in making others understand why free is better for you.

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3 Comments

  1. Yes, phaero, you’re right, I meant IceWeasel. IceDove is the replacement for Thunderbird, and it has already made it into Sid.

  2. IceDove? Well thats an even worse name than IceWeasel :P.

    I mean a dove has chance against a thunderbird ;)

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