I worked on both corporate open-source software and real free software and there's a world of difference between the two. Makes me cringe every time someone says open-source where free software is more appropriate.

I reserve my use of the word open-source for software made by corporations for which the source code is available, but no attention has been paid to respect the freedom of its users or the rights of the developers who worked on it.

There is corporate open-source software made in the software equivalent of sweat shops in developing countries. It doesn't respect the freedom of its developers. Is it only the user's freedom that's important? What about the rights of the worker who made it?

Shouldn't real free software respect the freedom of both the developers and the users? Maybe it's time to extend the definition.

@njoseph I think I understand what you're saying. Are you saying that the difference here is the motivations of the author of the code? If the developer is doing the work with the express purpose of helping a corporation rather than him or herself, then this is a very different thing, compared to the case when the developers are working based on their own requirements?

@njoseph I'm paid by my company to work on the #qemu project (in common with a large fraction of the main developers) but the project is very much a free software project. In fact freedom is very much an active discussion point on the lists when some topics come up.

Sign in to participate in the conversation

The social network of the future: No ads, no corporate surveillance, ethical design, and decentralization! Own your data with Mastodon!