Bradley Kuhn on switching back from Ubuntu to Debian
jani at ubuntu.com
Wed Jan 27 21:11:15 GMT 2010
> Any person lobbing stones at Ubuntu One needs to take a big step back
> and consider the other proprietary web services they're using on a
> daily basis, and ask themselves if they're really being fair.
Until recently Ubuntu/Canonical have been perceived as a different
category altogether, so such comparisons were not even attempted.
The fact that now the Ubuntu ecosystem is incorporating software and
services which have not historically been parts of the Linux desktop,
and thus comparisons to other suppliers of desktop/web combined
offerings become meaningful, the people who are complaining and lobbing
stones are doing so because they perceive a departure from the high
standards of software freedom which are stated in Ubuntu's philosophy.
1. Every computer user should have the freedom to download, run, copy,
distribute, study, share, change and improve their software for any
purpose, without paying licensing fees.
Since nowadays 'their software' is increasingly becoming equated with
'software they use' and no longer 'software installed on their machine'.
the Ubuntu philosophy is adhering to the GPL era notion of software
freedom but does not state much about AGPL & co.
While Canonical and most outside developers are aware of this, some
users may become confused or disappointed if such changes occur without
knowing exactly why a certain decision was made and more importantly if
it is indicative of other similar or more intrusive changes to come.
The line used to be drawn at essential firmware, but with the web in the
mix everything is blurrier.
Another thing which may be hard to adapt to is that these changes are
directly related to Canonical's business decisions. This too is
perfectly normal industry practice, but for enthusiastic users who would
spread Ubuntu and say that it is 100% free with no commercial strings
attached unlike Xandros, Linspire or even the Pro Editions of other free
distros, it serves as a reality check and a disappointment.
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