There's this letter going around that calls for the board of the @fsf to step down over #RMS coming back.

People make valid points about it, I'm not going to weigh in on that.

What gets me, very personally, is that one of the people signing is the #Python Software Foundation member and #RedHat employee that shut down a discussion with me the other day with a racist remark. I'm still waiting for a reply to my complaints.

I'm not even sure how to process that.

Somewhat indirectly related, that whole issue with #RMS brings up again the schism that occurred between free software and open source, and how one was subsumed into the other via the #FOSS abbreviation.

The free software movement cared about access for everyone. If you didn't like something, you could change it.

The open source movement cared about "given enough eyes, all bugs are shallow". They (some more, some less) wanted this quality also in commercial software.

Licenses mattered here.

Ironically, these days I see more younger people caring strongly about the freedom aspect of free software, whilst choosing open source licenses... usually because "they're easier".

I mean, fair enough. They are.

That's the point of free software licenses, that they don't allow everything so easily, but they allow the things that matter for human freedoms.

Now #RMS and the #FSF seem largely irrelevant, because they made themselves *be* irrelevant by their actions.

And at the same time...

... free software is more relevant than ever. So I'm seeing calls to strengthen the Software Freedom @conservancy . All good with me.

But what I've been working through recently - again, I can be slow in these things - is that neither organization nor license really encompass fully what we really need.

What gets left behind in a bunch of discussions - and has been for decades - is that software freedoms really are about human freedoms, just the ones expressed in the digital world.

That is, there is no inherent value in "software freedom" *unless* you somehow benefit humans (as individuals, not corporations) with them.

So then if human freedoms are the actual goal, and software freedoms are the mechanism by which to ensure them in a growing niche (can it still be called that?) of our lives, then we cannot have people or organizations championing software freedoms that also are happy to overlook human freedoms.

I'm still unconvinced #RMS is *actually* guilty of that...

... though he certainly is guilty of, well, not taking enough care with human freedoms.

The point is, he's been a missionary for too long, preaching about a narrow aspect of human freedoms so fervently that stepping on other people's toes wasn't really of any relevance to him.

I'm with people who now say we shouldn't really look to individuals as leaders in the free software movement.

At the same time, I do think that organizations are going to be useful, if only for focusing effort.

The #FSF *could* be useful for that still, but it's busy eroding community trust, so I won't be holding my breath here. The @conservancy is hopefully doing better.

#Python is worrying me here. I'm taking this a bit personally, of course, because I don't like being insulted (hilariously badly, even so.)

But what's happening with the move to #Rust as a crypto backend is human freedoms are attacked as well. In a move that is very reminiscent of the free software/open source split, priorities...


@jens I had the impression that FSF was mismanaged (relative to fsfeu and SFC). I shifted donations to SFC like 18 months ago. Nothing to do with RMS.
RMS is a hero. He needs to be supported somehow. Not sure a board seat is super important

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