Posts Tagged ‘sociology’

Why FOSS Advocates Are So Loud

July 26, 2009

“Use Linux!”

“Windows sucks!”

Such comments aren’t just stereotypical of the open source movement: many of us do say things to that extent, if in less explicit ways.

Why? I think it’s because we’re scared. I know I am.

The open source movement fears a world where we can’t compete. A world where legal and technical measures are in place that weight things against us. DRM’d media that we legally can’t implement programs for. Computers which don’t allow new operating systems to be installed. These things already exist. What new monstrosities could the future hold?

But there’s one thing that could protect us: market-share (and by extension mind-share). If we can become engrained into the world, can become widely used, can become economically significant, we will be protected by the very nature of democracy: the People will vote with their ballots against these unfair laws and with their money against companies that sell locked computers. We’d be safe.

Our shouts might sound like mindless fanboiisms but they aren’t. They’re a plea from people who are scared. Please listen.