Why is FLOSS "right"and proprietary "wrong"?

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The problem with proprietary is that proprietary solutions do claim exclusivity and prevent progress. They raise prices to such extends that major parts of the world can’t afford it to participate. While the proprietary developers prevent with patents that anyone can compete.
So did Autodesk BUY most of it’s property (3ds Max, bought, Mental Ray,… bought,… Maya,… bought,… and the list goes on).
Adobe? The same, think of all former Macromedia solutions… (Flash!).

The proprietary developers let you pay for their market monopoly.
Microsoft is huge, Apple is huge, Adobe is huge,… Autodesk,… and go on, all giants build on patents.

Also is software often bound to hardware (iPhone iPad iMac), pushing you into a golden prison, depending like an addict to what ever it is they are pushing towards your direction. Not to speak of the child labor and unfair conditions related to the big giants.
(slave trade, slave camps, rape, child labor,… yes I know I loose you all here, but don’t believe me on my written word, just investigate yourself and find the truth behind the gold (and other) used in your precious overpaid proprietary gadgets) :wink:

The only reason that FLOSS is still around, because of the public licenses applicable, which prevents the giants from buying and adding to their monopoly.
So you do not have to pay for Blender and GIMP and can extend Blender and GIMP,… because you are allowed to do so!
Else Blender, Linux, GIMP, and the lot of other FLOSS solutions out there wouldn’t exist anymore.

Also do the proprietary developers bind the market to them, so you can’t leave.
So is there a city in Germany, wanting to seperate from Microsofts proprietary formats,… and after trying for a long time, they couldn’t.

Once you build your company up, depending on proprietary formats, you may end loosing everything you’ve build, simply because the proprietary owner will stop development, develops away from your core, or will stop development at completely. There are briliant pieces of software going down the drain because the competing nature was standing between someone’s profits and ideas to more money and power: buy the solutions and let it die… a tactic used on a daily basis.

And it doesn’t have to be FLOSS, OSS is OK as well, the developers have the right to charge for their work.
But they shouldn’t have the right to bind you to them indefinitely.

If you save a document/file: save it in a free format! (.odt instead of .doc / .blend instead of .max / .xcf instead of .psd / et cetera)

(FL)OSS may not always provide the tools exactly like you prefer.
But you can always change what ever it is you need to be changed. And are allowed to do so!
You can even ask/pay someone to do it for you if you can’t do it your self, this is not common with proprietary solutions.

If the direction they are headed doesn’t fit any longer, you fork and start your own spin off.

Where persons claim Photoshop to be better then GIMP, it might be in part their fault.
Spend your money on GIMP instead of buying that license of the proprietary solution, and you’ve may have already be the person responsible for half or entire that functionality you’ve been in demand for.

Using pirated versions of proprietary software even helps the proprietary monopolists (it is their standard and format you support and depend on, you use their tutorials, books and bug reports, you promote their product).
Where using FLOSS software, you do nothing illegal, and you will support the FLOSS solution (use their tutorials/books/video’s/bug reports)
And this is done without paying a dime to either one of them!

Software is power, you have the choice to give that power to the public, the community, or to pay to give it to an monopolist.
FLOSS is “world peace”.

You need to start relaxing a bit mate !

I’ve also moved this thread to off-topic where it is most appropriate.

The “right or wrong”, binary phrasing of the question seems just a bit too extreme for me. This is because I personally try to avoid moralizing except in situations where it’s absolutely obvious (such as life or death).

But I do agree that, with information, it is indeed morally wrong and just impractical to try and prevent sharing.

“If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.”

If somebody has physical property, yes, they have they own that and they have the right to it. But if that is then spread out to others - and the original owner retains his - then he no longer “owns” it. He still possesses the matter (such as the hard drive) on which the information was stored. And he still possesses the information. It is now simply shared. This is to the benefit of all. He’s lost no property. All the matter and mass he first had, he still does have.

(I believe that, psychologically, many people still think of everything like land and other physical objects that they can possess. That is important. But information has no matter or mass, and is fundamentally different because it’s infinite. You can’t run out of information the way you can run out of cattle to eat or land to till.)

Most importantly of all, I believe that the idea of “intellectual property” is morally wrong because it means what the government always means: that if you go against it, men with guns will come into your home, put you into a cage, and throw you in a cage. Or murder you. When somebody says, “You can’t use Maya or Photoshop without paying!” they mean that if you have that information…the government should enslave or maim you. This is the way of it for ALL government laws/regulations/permits, etc., etc. And because the government enslaving and killing people is wrong (except to clearly save a human life, protect one’s physical property, or protect contracts), the idea of intellectual property is therefore also wrong.

I disagree with the binary nature too. Producing a software program is work. And work should be paid for. Charging for software in fact speeds progression – funding developers to work on it. I love Blender, but name one innovation, one technology that they started and others jumped on…

Blender is excellent for all around, but will never lead the pack in terms of innovation. The same is true of other FOSS. Linux could be a special case, but remember that spawned from UNIX under AT&T.

This is not to say that I appreciate the big boys waving a big bat at the under-funded little guys to keep their market share. It goes both ways – developers on FOSS have a right to publish their code, even if it mirrors big boy code in terms of functionality, so long as it isn’t reverse engineered code…

Blender has changed the game using a different business model to stay afloat, but this does not mean that it is the right model (or wrong model – it is just a different model)

To emphasize:
Free as in Liberty, Freedom - Not Free as in Free of charge, like “Free Beer”.

How do you separate these two? Programmers have to pay rent too. If they make everything open source, how do they charge for it?

Well then they do something wrong.
Think about drupal. Many or most drupal modules are sponsored by companies paying the developers and funding the projects.
The problem is a missing platform for all the blender projects (wip), should be like drupal does (central place for extensions / modules)

are there also some structured plans for something like drupalcon?

where are the important blender evangelists?
blender related events in each country (like drupal does? do you know about jquery meetups)

a more open platform and better for developers - they even provide for each developer the needed services on drupal.org (issues, tickets, testing, git, forums, commits using git, repos …)

are there also some structured plans for something like drupalcon?
You mean like the annual blender conference in Amsterdam

Not like this, just amsterdam is not enough. Also you should take a look at jquery meetups
local meetups

Amsterdam is just too far away for most people and this is not enough for blender =)

so you know what drupal does for his users and community - much more

munich is ok

There are other blender user groups around the world.

Maybe you should start a local one.

We should have a central place for this like jquery. Starting mulptiple times a local group / meetup in the same city / area in different corners of the web without a central place - not a good idea

Like it or not, while Blender itself is free as in freedom, there’s actually been a lot of money involved in Blender’s development which has allowed it to become a full production software that is comparable to the big budget apps. in various ways.

the ocean sim, tiles compositor, Smoke simulation, all of the GSoC projects, the open-movie related dev. projects ect… has all had at least a few thousand dollars behind it either from user funding or from companies like Google allowing students to dive into programming. This has happened in many cases where users see a new exciting feature being proposed and they donate large amounts so they can have it in the next release or two rather than perhaps half a year or more down the road. If you want that cool new feature ‘now’, the developer would then need assistance to pay his bills so he can spend more time coding.

When you look at it, there has been more money involved in Blender’s development model (like the open movie funding and the development fund), than most of the other known open source projects, and that has resulted in Blender having an incredibly fast pace of development compared to projects that try to strictly be volunteer driven.

Yes, Blender’s development involves a lot less in the way of EULA’s, patent protection, and the like, but there’s still a decent amount of money involved, even if it is a lot less than the amount involving commercial projects.

Hey … sec let me find the switch…K
Any impediment to the free flow of information is a criminal act therefore usually a profitable one.
The system of patent and copyrights is not to protect the creator but to protect the system.
Copyright litigation, and civil litigation has become a soft form of cultural control and censorship
We have created Golems (corporations) that claim the rights of a living being in the courts, and we give it them!
We are controlled by a governmental system owned by the merchant classes that they invented when we wore onions on our belt and the fastest communication was by horseback.
We are so drunk and confused we think that money can work, usury is a right thing and people have ideas that are all their own. Perhaps some FOSS Government and Banking is something to work on.
Toll the road! it’s the battle cry of these weaklings, claim ownership over what is common and have force to back up the theft.
The most egregious thefts and assaults are committed by the pharmaceutical golems. Their withholding of our information (I have a cybernetic outlook) for the price of 60,000 dollars; will likely lead to my early and painful death by liver cancer. I will lay this body down before I give it to them.
This absurd so called Capitalism was best described by Stalin
“If I were to announce today that we intend to hang all capitalists tomorrow, they would trip over each other trying to sell us the rope.”
Human activity has more in kind with the lifecycle of the flea than the being we should/could be.
Once you realize that consciousness is not a localized phenomenon, reality becomes much easier to understand.


You are right. Stalin would just kill us himself.

Dahjoat: I’m not sure if I get you, but it almost sounds like you would like to see a government where everyone is free to elect themselves into a position to change things as well as making every possible product from pillows to mega-yachts completely free?

Should we really make it so people do not have the right to charge even a nominal amount for their hard work, should we ban locks on doors so anyone who needs a place to stop and rest can walk into your house and ‘borrow’ your car and PC for as long as needed?

The problem I have with people who claim that we can together make a paradise on Earth, is that some of them (like the one quoted in your post) kill millions of people and imprison countless more to attain such a goal, surely you’re not open to that?

In all, people have a right to create a business, people have a right to create products that can sell to others, and people have a right to expand their business (and it is worth noting that many large corporations started out as small companies run by people who had a good idea).

As for patents, I don’t see anything wrong with them providing there’s a reasonable system that lets them expire after a time (which would be long enough so the creators can get some revenue out of it without being immediately drowned by others copying the idea word-for-word)

Fact is, “computer software” is one of the most expensive things that man has ever developed. When you start adding-up the man hours and attaching a fair price to it, the true cost of software is hideously expensive.

That’s why “open-source” … which I prefer to call collaborative development, and to which I would never attach the word, “free” … is such a big deal.

I think that the industry’s realization was that, “no way we can afford this if every one of us is doing the exact same thing.” A rising tide lifts all boats equally. If we share “the crown jewels,” under a specially-crafted copyright license which guarantees that no one will ever lay claim to what we have shared, then all of us can collaborate as peers toward the development of a foundation technology that will benefit all of us equally. Then, from this vastly-elevated position, we can deploy our proprietary goodies.

The bottom line … the very pragmatic bottom line that any lawyer and/or accountant can understand … is that it works.

It’s not free. Instead, it’s the one-and-only way to cope with software’s tremendous cost.

Free as in Freedom, translates to that you are not restricted (as much),
you have the freedom to alter/modify/change, without the requirement for permission or payment.
Free as in Freedom translates to the liberty to share and sell your changes.
Freedom to not share and develop in house only.

Not Free Beer:
Developers however can charge for their time, labor, support and services.
Developers can find sponsors (any party that is willing to pay for what their labor), receive donations, crowd source, funding campaigns, sell documentation, sell licenses, sell service/support.

If you buy a bread at a bakery, does the baker come back the next day and tells you to pay the license to the bread again?
Does the baker prevent you to make lettuce sandwiches with your bread?
Does the baker prevent you to share the bread you just bought with someone else?
Does the baker prevent you to go and bake your own bread?
Does the baker prevent you to improve the bread by adding raisins and nuts?
Does the baker prevent you from starting your own bakery?
Does the baker prevent you from starting a slice-your-bread-here shop?
Does the baker let you sign a binding contract you are bound to any of the aforementioned restrictions?

And if the baker did this, would you still buy this bread?

No, you pay for the bread one time, for the time energy labor and ingredients invested.
The same (should) count for software.
There is no reason to be bound to such restrictions as not being able to modify, share or sell the software or charge for services you offer.

Developers payment
Developers can charge for their developments, either by selling the software, charge for their time, charge for support, charge for development.
There are many examples which proof that this concept is able to function and is profitable for the developers.

The added bonus is that there is not one developer claiming right and slowing down development or steering into a direction.
Everyone can steer into the direction they prefer, everyone can help to develop or spin off their own vision.
This results in adding custom functionality. This creates a bigger foundation and potentially a faster development cycle, being independent of any single developer. You are free to add the functionality you prefer.

Nobody can hold you back, as long as you stick to the same basic rules (allowing everyone to do the same).

There is nothing wrong with sharing!

This might be true in some cases, this is not generally true for everything out there, far from.

See the finance behind the “giants”, their profits, the millions spend on lawsuits, lawyers, patents and promotional activities.
These are all costs deriving from the ability to claim “rights” and create “monopolies”.

And this is despite the fact of the piracy going on. These fees are paid by the few companies and consumers who indeed pay for these practices.

CEO’s and/or founders /stockholders behind specific “patents” aren’t wealthy due to the fact that the development is too expensive.
The wealth derives from the “rights” that positions them to do make these profits, because others aren’t allowed to do the same (or similar),
there is no free market, there is artificial created and maintained “scarcity”.
While software is almost endless available if shared. (There is always the cost and effort involved to keep everything accessible and share it, yet these are a tiny fraction of the overall costs).

Society needs to learn to pay for the performance and share the recording.