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posted by Fnord666 on Sunday March 28 2021, @05:23AM   Printer-friendly

Red Hat pulls Free Software Foundation funding over Richard Stallman's return:

The chorus of disapproval over Richard M Stallman, founder and former president of the Free Software Foundation (FSF), rejoining the organisation has intensified as Linux giant Red Hat confirmed it was pulling funding.

Stallman announced he had returned to the FSF's Board of Directors last weekend – news that has not gone down well with all in the community and Red Hat is the latest to register its dismay.

CTO Chris Wright tweeted overnight: "I am really outraged by FSF's decision to reinstate RMS. At a moment in time where diversity and inclusion awareness is growing, this is a step backwards."

Describing itself as "appalled" at the return of Stallman to the FSF board of directors "considering the circumstances of Richard Stallman's original resignation in 2019," Red Hat said it decided to act.

"We are immediately suspending all Red Hat funding of the FSF and any FSF-hosted events. In addition, many Red Hat contributors have told us they no longer plan to participate in FSF-led or backed events, and we stand behind them," said Red Hat.

[...] Red Hat's step marks an escalation in the war of words over Stallman's return. As both a long-time donor and contributor of code, the IBM-owned company's action might well give the FSF pause for thought in a way that thousands of outraged tweets might not.

FSF president Geoffrey Knauth stated his intention yesterday "to resign as an FSF officer, director, and voting member as soon as there is a clear path for new leadership."

Red Hat statement about Richard Stallman's return to the Free Software Foundation board


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  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28 2021, @08:58PM (10 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28 2021, @08:58PM (#1130436)
    And the movement has failed. Get over it.
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  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28 2021, @09:43PM (9 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28 2021, @09:43PM (#1130455)

    No, because non-free proprietary user-subjugating software continues to be a plague upon humanity by enabling mass surveillance and control over users. The time to give up is never.

    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28 2021, @11:13PM (8 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28 2021, @11:13PM (#1130481)

      That “plague of mass surveillance was directly caused by the GPL. People (Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc) saw that they could use GPL software and NEVER give away their modifications as long as they didn’t distribute binaries because the GPL is not a use license but a distribution license.

      That loophole required them to run modifications on servers, which gave us the massive software as a service which is at the core of mass surveillance.

      So the GPL encourages bad behaviour. Whereas I have tons of old software from before the surveillance economy that I bought and paid for, doesn’t need the internet, and can’t be yanked at will by the manufacturer. Because it’s mine, it runs locally, and that’s what I like.

      If I have a choice between buying proprietary software that runs locally , does what I want, and doesn’t phone home, or paying a monthly fee (either money or by giving up my privacy), I’ll buy the proprietary software. At least I know in advance what I’m getting.

      The GPL was a Trojan horse, and it encourages SaaS that provides an almost irresistible temptation to data mine users. Unintended consequences are still consequences, and it was foreseeable.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28 2021, @11:58PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28 2021, @11:58PM (#1130495)

        That “plague of mass surveillance was directly caused by the GPL.

        No, it's caused by unethical parasitic corporations that don't respect or care about your freedoms. Though in some cases Free Software can be used for evil, proprietary software enables even more mass surveillance because you can't control it at all. SAASS is a problem and must be rejected, being about as bad as proprietary software even if the software running on the servers is not proprietary. The acceptance of SAASS is the problem here, not the software running on the servers.

        If I have a choice between buying proprietary software that runs locally , does what I want, and doesn’t phone home, or paying a monthly fee (either money or by giving up my privacy), I’ll buy the proprietary software.

        You don't have that choice, because you don't control the software. Even if the proprietary software doesn't do any surveillance or actively abuse users in other ways at present, it could in the future. Windows is a very good example of this.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 30 2021, @12:49AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 30 2021, @12:49AM (#1131010)

          As a developer the FSF doesn’t care about my freedom. I will choose whatever terms are most beneficial to me. That can mean writing SaaS in an ethical way, by charging for the service and not selling the data. People are willing to pay for services that preserve their interests. So it’s in my best interest not to turn such SaaS into spyware.

          Of course that means not giving away services for “free” and then ass-raping the users. As people demand more control over their personal information, business models like Facebook and Google will come under more pressure. Hopefully they will fail. But probably not, because people know the cost of everything and the value of nothing.

          But since nobody has answered my challenge as to what has Stallman done that’s useful this century, the answer is simple - he made one minor commit way back in 2003. A few in 1997 and 1998.

          Surprised? I’m not.

      • (Score: 1, Troll) by Azuma Hazuki on Monday March 29 2021, @12:43AM (3 children)

        by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Monday March 29 2021, @12:43AM (#1130521) Journal

        How much did Microsoft pay you for that? Hopefully not much because wow, that sucked. A little more subtlety would be really helpful.

        Let me guess, you're also going to say all regulation is bad because some corrupt CEOs have purchased politicians and had their own laws written? Aroint thee, shill, and begone back to the pits from whence Win32.dll was spawned!

        --
        I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 29 2021, @10:39PM (2 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 29 2021, @10:39PM (#1130952)

          I am definitely NOT a shill for anyone. However, I know that vendors of proprietary software have more of an incentive not to abuse their customers because that means losing a paying customer going forward. When you’re using Gmail, Facebook, or some other “free” service you agree to them using and selling your data.

          Apple is the better choice for most people. It does what most users want without the hassle of Google , Microsoft, or the lack of functionality and choice of Linux.

          But back to the main topic. What has RMS done in the last 20 years that would justify him being relevant today? He’s made ONE minor commit in 2003, and a few in 1997-98. Nothing else since.

          And he’s notorious for his lame attempts to hit on women, giving out what he calls “pleasure cards.”

          sharing good books, good food and exotic music and dance

          tender embraces

          unusual sense of humor

          Richard Stallman

          https://www.reddit.com/r/justneckbeardthings/comments/2vkeze/he_calls_it_his_pleasure_card/ [reddit.com]

          Totally unprofessional, and he was notorious for giving them out to attractive women at events. The guy is gross.

          No wonder he’s an incel. That he wasn’t fired after this happened a few times speaks volumes of the complacency of the FSF towards bad behaviour by this asshole. Tell me you wouldn’t want to slap him if he gave you one of these cards - or maybe throw up a bit in your mouth.

          Women have complained about his behaviour since at least the turn of the century, so it’s not like this was a big secret. The FSF deserves to die for gross incompetence and being an enabler of institutional misogyny.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 29 2021, @11:34PM (1 child)

            by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 29 2021, @11:34PM (#1130970)

            yeah, well have a policy on shit and enforce it. no need for all these lies and character assassination.

            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 30 2021, @12:51AM

              by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 30 2021, @12:51AM (#1131012)

              It’s not character assassination if it’s true. And it’s all been public knowledge for decades.

      • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 29 2021, @03:18AM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 29 2021, @03:18AM (#1130589)

        It was not GPL license, but the ubiquitous, fast, cheap (flat fee) Internet (esp. in wirelessly connected devices) that made server based computing possible, along with all the abuses that enables.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 30 2021, @01:20PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 30 2021, @01:20PM (#1131181)
          Absolutely not true. Dialup wasn’t THAT long ago. And for some people, dialup speeds are still the case. And you still don’t have unlimited bandwidth on cell data plans.