ethical ubuntu

Anders Karlsson trudheim at
Tue Jun 6 06:36:28 BST 2006

On Mon, 2006-06-05 at 16:54 +0100, Jack Wasey wrote:
> I'd like to stress again that the spec is about providing information to allow 
> the user to make a decision. To make an informed choice, people need information.
> Ubuntu is indeed against closed protocols in principle, and I discourage Skype 
> for this reason, not to mention their dealings with certain governments. Skype 
> will never be in the Ubuntu repos. Skype reserves the right to start charging 
> for their free service, or, as they planned with Intel, limit use of certain 
> features to people with certain chips. How is this in line with the principles 
> of Ubuntu?

By all means educate people about the badness of closed source. But
where will the line be drawn? What about using a linux based system for
heavy duty 3D applications? Both ATI and nVidia do closed source
drivers, so they are out of the question. SiS hardware is not really an
option, as they have a very bad history about doing closed source
Windows only drivers so morally (and from a self preservation point of
view) they should be shunned.

My point being, if you are totally ethical about it, you can probably
forget using a computer completely until you have FOSS hardware, BIOS,
microcode for disks, CPU and other chips used, as well as FOSS
peripherals, drivers and OS.

So where to draw the line if to carry on using a computer today, without
crippling it too much? This has to be kept in mind, debated and thought
about. Is a closed source driver, like nVidia's, acceptable if they
listen to bugreports and fix them quickly? What about CPU microcode
updates in binary only updates, even if they fix critical problems?
Binary only firmware for WiFi cards?

I applaud the effort, and will look forward to seeing the varying shades
of grey explained and categorised. 

Anders Karlsson <trudheim at>
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: smime.p7s
Type: application/x-pkcs7-signature
Size: 3838 bytes
Desc: not available
Url :

More information about the sounder mailing list