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[News] Capitalism Thrives Around Free Software

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Corporate investment the price of Linux's freedom 

,----[ Quote ]
| But now it seems that every corporation has its finger in the open source 
| pie, and every long standing free software developer has been employed by a 
| multi-billion dollar company to work on the project of his or her choice. 
| This change began to happen during the late nineties, prior to Red Hat's $6 
| billion flotation on the NASDAQ, but became truly significant when IBM 
| announced its commitment to Linux in December 2000.     


What is an “Open Source Company?” The Billion Dollar Question

,----[ Quote ]
| My poster child for this is, predictably, Google. As I discussed last year, I 
| consider Google to be an “open source business” because the business is 
| effectively built on open source. True, its software is no more open than, 
| say, the pieces of the IBM portfolio that embed the Apache HTTP server, but 
| it’s undeniable that Google is a business that is built on, with and from 
| open source software. And while some will undoubtedly challenge their side of 
| the give and take equation, given their contributions from Summer of Code to 
| Mark Callaghan’s MySQL patches I find it hard to argue that they are not 
| benefiting a variety of communities.         



Free Is Not Socialism

,----[ Quote ]
| I've had a browser open with a two part series from the site "e-consultancy"
| for the better part of a month, debating whether or not it's even worth going
| through this battle again -- but it seems worth it to clear up some serious
| misconceptions. The first article decries "digital socialism" and the second
| part goes after the "tyranny of the consumer." This, by itself, seems
| contradictory. The capitalist free market works thanks to the tyranny of the
| consumer. That is, the entire reason why the free market works is because
| consumers have power to move to a competitor -- and that keeps producers
| in-line. Complaining about consumers getting their way is a rejection of
| capitalism and the free market, not support for it.



Environmental and social justice groups unite in support of free software

,----[ Quote ]
| Read and comment at the BadVista.org blogVista was engineered from the ground
| up as a Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) and Treacherous Computing (TC)
| platform. Microsoft hides these defects under more benign-sounding names
| like “Digital Rights Management” and “Trusted Computing”. But the fact is
| that Vista is designed to monitor what people do, and in particular to limit
| what they can do with digital media files. These limits obstruct common and
| legally protected uses like sharing news story clips and copying text from
| government documents. Vista has also been designed for easy updating from a
| central authority, so that new restrictions can always be imposed, disabling
| certain features or programs. When a user clicks OK to install Vista,
| Microsoft claims—illegitimately—that she is consenting in advance to this
| control. It is the computational burden of this constant monitoring in
| combination with the requirement that all hardware support these software
| restrictions that is driving many of Vista’s steep hardware requirements,
| leading to the environmental consequences that groups like the Green Party
| and Greenpeace have described.


Filipinos offer open source human rights monitoring software

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| Filipino members of an organization of computer professionals have launched
| open source-based software designed for human rights organizations.
| [...]
| CPU has been an advocate of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) in the
| country.
| "These CPU projects prove that FOSS is a viable replacement even for very
| specific tools of non-governmental organizations," Bahague said. "The toolkit
| is also our small tribute to many human rights violation victims of the
| current regime as reported by Prof. Philip Alston recently."


Yahoo: China's censoring Flickr

,----[ Quote ]
| Popular among a growing class of digital-photo enthusiasts in the
| world's second-largest Internet market, Flickr has not shown photos
| to users in mainland China since last week, amid rumors that Beijing
| took action after images of the Tiananmen Square massacre in early
| June 1989 were posted.


Yahoo stockholders vote against anticensorship proposal

,----[ Quote ]
| Yahoo shareholders voted down a proposal that would have forced
| management to adopt stronger policies regarding government attempts
| to limit Internet access and to curtail freedom of speech in
| countries where Yahoo operates.

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