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Why Richard Stallman doesn’t matter | ][ Stefano Maffulli

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There is so much truth to this. I like the vision and mission of the Free Software Foundation, but under Stallman’s leadership”, it has ignored the internet.

That’s because Stallman’s world was and still is, stuck in the 80s: computers are physical devices that users can own and keep in their homes. For that use case, the four freedoms, the definition of source code and installation tooling introduced in GPLv3 made a lot of sense. Nothing else seemed to matter to him. The decision for the Linux kernel not to adopt GPLv3 wasn’t considered a problem and it was often downplayed by FSF leadership.

I shared my story of meeting Stallman before and he really didn’t see the Internet as a thing that mattered. Mostly this was because he wouldn’t use it? He famously is the person who used an emacs, email, bash script thing to pull web pages when he needed information. That’s crazy. The real Free Software challenge has moved online and Stallman was still thinking about a open BIOS.

Posted on October 22, 2019

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