[Fsf-friends] FSF-I as a unifying force(WasRe: Statement of FSF India board on recent incidents)

Nagarjuna G. nagarjun at gnowledge.org
Sun Nov 30 23:00:55 IST 2008

On Sun, Nov 30, 2008 at 10:20 PM, Vikram Vincent
<vincentvikram at gmail.com> wrote:
> Greetings,
> My observations are at the end.
> FSF-I was formed in July 2001. The I-Lugs existed years before that.
> Now FSF-I should have worked for the conversion of the "Linux" to
> "Libre" as done in certain groups.
> Why divide the Movement by promoting FSUGs etc?
> To take free software(free knowledge) to the last (wo)man in the most
> backward villages of our country we need people of different
> backgrounds. I don't think that differences on the issue of Free vs.
> Open should have been a devisive issue.

we do not force, we voice our views.   In the case of Kochi ILUG, I
did not force, they were already convinced. Kochi ILUG asked me to
baptize, so I did it.  Wherever possible we should keep talking, and
when people are ready we can change it. If they do not change, what is
wrong in creating a cleaner group with focussed objective.  Every
political action creates this division, and this is necessary for the
identify of the group.

In some places like Bangalore there are enough people who stand for
software freedom, and that is why fsug exists.  But, we need to create
such groups in other places as well. We should continue to participate
in lugs, and whenever software freedom related issues are raised we
must defend or voice our views.

Open vs free debate started after free was in currency for several
years.  they started telling people that freedom is not the issue and
began focusing on practical aspects of free software.  We do not deny
that practical aspects of free software are not important, but they
are secondary.  Because, they come from the primary aspect of freedom.
 Take away freedom, the pragmatic aspects do not have value.  They
knew that freedom is the underlying aspect, but they masked it
deliberately.  That is not acceptable to us.  Even if it takes a long
time, we do not want to tell users to use free software by telling
them about attractive cover which masks the underlying essence. If we
do that people may not even see it.  This is a fact.  Most users who
use GNU/Linux do not know the virtues of it, they use it for practical
reasons.  That is why telling them about freedom is becoming
difficult.  We want a sustainable social change, and that comes only
when we convince users about the idea behind it.  Then users will use
free software come what may.

However, whenever we are fighting on some issues like, software
patents, free document standards, etc. open source community and free
software community worked together.  Therefore we are not weakening
the force when required.  But, it is very important to keep the idea
of free software at the core.

yes, we need people of different backgrounds. that is why we want to
tell all groups the message of software freedom.

If you look at the history you will realize who created the division
and confusion. So, if you are accusing FSF is divisive you are
spreading a wrong message. Not only that,  what you are doing is not
in support of FSF, because you are questioning the core of FSF.

Nagarjuna G.

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