Terminology Advocates Protect FOSS

Open Source Initiative (OSI) president, Michael Tiemann, discusses adherence to the “open source” definition. I read his article with two interests in mind. First, of someone who feels semantics are important (I’ve always felt the poor argument “it’s only semantics” is little more than an attempt by small-thinkers to belittle what they are unwilling to invest effort into understanding). Second, because I think the labeling of software as open source or free has a profound impact on … Continue Reading →

Dissecting Proprietary Doublespeak–ISC Letter Criticism Part 2

Now to continue what I started yesterday–criticising the letter (PDF) from the Initiative for Software Choice‘s (ISC) Hugo Lueders. Why bother criticizing this? Is it of any consequence? I think so, if not because the letter itself may actually influence policy, but rather because this kind of thing is visible to many people and can spread opinions based on poor reasoning or misleading statements. I think it’s useful to debate such things openly and at least offer alternate lines of critical thought. … Continue Reading →

Dissecting Proprietary Doublespeak–ISC Letter Criticism Part 1

What would we do if George Orwell hadn’t enabled us to come up with doublespeak neologisms? Matthew Broersma of Techworld.com wrote about a “leaked” letter (PDF) from the Initiative for Software Choice (ISC) regarding a UNU-MERIT study on FLOSS in the economy. Broersma describes the ISC as a “Microsoft-funded pressure group” which sounds like an appropriate description to me. Essentially the letter presents proprietarian interests as the software underdogs who will be cut from fair consid … Continue Reading →

Are Co-ops the Ideal FOSS Business Structure?

Free and open source software is a community affair. One would think it might be a perfect fit for a cooperative type of business entity. Businesses surviving and growing in virtue of FOSS ecosystems develop some interesting business models–the support and services model for example (though becoming increasingly common) relies on the collaborative efforts of, sometimes huge, communities of people as a basis for its existance. Another model that I once thought was pretty innovative came from Transgaming Technolog … Continue Reading →