Re: Thanks, and a Brief Survey

I too usually prefer to use the term open source software. However, in this context, I think the term free software is more appropriate.

To me, open source software is any software that meets the OSI definition, It is also the way most companies talk about free and open source software.

Free software, to me, also meets the same definition but in addition shows a preference for free software and support for free software in general. I think the GNOME Foundation definitely prefers free software - see the statement. (And that does not mean it is anti-proprietary software.)
The GNOME Foundation believes in free software and promotes free software but that does not mean that GNOME is anti-proprietary software. We believe, promote, use and write free software.

We are excited when companies and individuals use GNOME technologies because we believe it brings us closer to our mission and vision of a free desktop (or mobile interface) accessible to everyone. Sometimes those companies are proprietary software companies and while we hope that they move closer to free software in the future (and that we are helping them do so with the use of GNOME), we are delighted that they have chosen to use GNOME and will help them and their customers.
That said, I don't have any objections to companies or individuals referring to GNOME as open source software. I actually consciously try to decide whether I mean free software or open source software whenever I use either term now. You'll see me use both in the same paragraph - intentionally - as I think they have different meanings and connotations.

We could also amend the statement to say "free and open source software" but it gets awkward.


On Fri, Jan 15, 2010 at 9:58 AM, Lefty (石鏡 ) <lefty shugendo org> wrote:
On 1/15/10 8:49 AM, "Philip Van Hoof" <pvanhoof gnome org> wrote:
> I fully agree with this statement if you replace free software with open
> source.

I have some sympathy with this view. "Open source" is my preference as well
and (based on the survey data) seems to have broader "uptake" among the

That said, I can personally live with "free" (in spite of it not being the
terminology I personally use) if that's the consensus among the members

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