Re: Non-free software and GNOME

On Fri, 2001-10-19 at 13:05, Christian Schaller wrote:
> Hi,
> As most of you probably know myself and Steve George are writing the
> GNOME summaries. Personally I also post or approve a lot of the stories
> comming up on Gnotices. 
> Some weeks ago we got a mail from Richard Stallman asking that we stop
> all mentions of non-free software in the GNOME summaries. The background
> for the request was that we had mentioned the beta of Star Office some
> time back.
> I argued that the purpose of the GNOME summaries was to promote GNOME
> and while our focus of course is free software I felt that it was
> natural to mention the availability of non-free software where the
> existence of such software where a clear advantage for GNOME.
> RMS replied telling us that he disagreed with my argument and saying the
> we are legitimatizing the use of non-free software by mentioning it. 
> I left it at that, but today RMS remailed us today asking us to confirm
> that we will not mention non-free software anymore.
> So I decided to ask the GNOME foundation on policy advice on this issue.
> So what is to be the GNOME policy on this question? Is all mentions of
> non-free software something we should avoid at all costs or should we
> keep with the current unwriten policy of mentioning it when we feel that
> mentioning will benefit the use of free software (GNOME) overall?
I personally don't see any problem in mentioning, once in a while,
non-free software in the summaries. That is, the summaries are like the
TV news, aren't they, so a good journalist would talk about everything
that's happened, and not only the news that match his/her political
And if the GNOME summaries intention is to inform of everything that
happens around the GNOME project, I've got nothing against them
including info about non-free software. Of course, they should promote
free software whenever possible, which so far I think they do.

> Personally I feel that I and Steve have kept a nice balance using common
> sense up to this point, but if we are out of sync with the rest of the
> community please let us know.
so far, my impression is that you're doing a great job, I'm only missing
the gnome-db summary, but that of course is my fault, since I haven't
sent it to you yet :-(

Rodrigo Moya <rodrigo gnome-db org> - <rodrigo ximian com> -

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