Subject: Re: Do We Need a New Evangelist
From: Russell Nelson <>
Date: 1 Apr 1999 13:42:53 -0000

Bob Weiner writes:
 > Since the very essence of Open Source is that the technology should be free
 > (libre) for anyone to apply to their specific needs (if others' freedoms are
 > not harmed), then arguing that an organization that markets OSS and therefore 
 > seeks to spread its use more broadly is somehow unfairly exploiting others'
 > work is simply a non sequitor.

Everybody who works with libre software should go read Eric Raymond's
_Homesteading the Noosphere_ paper.

If he's right (and I'm not going to argue that he is; read it for
yourself), then people write libre software expecting to be paid in
reputation.  So, free software is more of a misnomer than people
think, AND it is quite possible to unfairly exploit libre software by
denying the authors the proper credit.

It also predicts that the most successful free software authors will
have, in addition to their programming skills, an ability to market
themselves to get the credit they seek.  My conclusion, then, is that
a marketing organization can get more free software by explicitly
"paying" for its free software through increasing the author's

-russ nelson <>
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