Should Macromedia disband?
This BBC interview with Richard Stallman seems to suggest so. I don't know how reliably he has been quoted or reported in this article, but a check of his personal site
suggests these may be accurate quotes. Things that caught my eye include: "'Non-free software is wrong and we do not want it in our lives' ... He has been campaigning since 1984 for the end of proprietary software."
The first seems valid to me, because you can live as you see fit, but the second seems to be denying choice to others...? "'A whole generation has grown up with the idea that it is normal for them to have no freedom'" says Mr Stallman. 'We should destroy the record companies and put an end to institutions that are this arrogant and trying to take away our freedom,' he says."
Assuming the premise, then wouldn't you logically pursue other goals first, such as the extirpation of deadly intolerance?
"'The end point is that all published software should be free, you should always have the freedom to study, change and share software,' he says. 'These should be inalienable rights.... If I cannot share it then I will not install it... if it requires me to mistreat others I would say no to it.'"
I'm usually leery of "should be" statements, because they leave out the "in order to achieve which goal" part and seem to brook no dissent. It's fine if you have philosophical differences with a particular piece of code and choose not to use it... that's your choice. But he seems to be implying that others must not be allowed to enter into arrangements which do not include the source code. When combined with the last phrase, I really wonder what he's like in face-to-face conversation.
Anyway, I'm interested in additional and alternative views on this subject... I'm hoping to learn something new, to have my mind changed here. Part of his article rants against software patents and intellectual copyright, which are separate large issues I'd prefer not to wander off into here today, but do you see ways that we at Macromedia can improve the balance between code we open to others and code we pay the rent on? I may not be able to do
anything with the suggestions received, but I can definitely raise 'em with my partners here. Thanks!