Subject: Re: Open letter to those who believe in a right to free software
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <turnbull@sk.tsukuba.ac.jp>
Date: Fri, 29 Oct 1999 11:52:17 +0900 (JST)

>>>>> "Ben" == Ben Tilly <Ben_Tilly@trepp.com> writes:

    Ben> Stephen Turnbull writes:

    >> OK, OK, economics does not dominate anybody who has personal
    >> goals and acts according to them.  I wish RMS would admit that.
    >> :-)

    Ben> But en masse?  I think that economic factors help shape
    Ben> public concepts of ethics.

I think that this is an abuse of the word "ethics".  The dependency
should be the other way around.  Individuals may have a concept of
ethics that incorporates economic tradeoffs; changes in economic
factors should change the ethical decisions they make where those
economic tradeoffs are admissible in decision-making.  (They often are 
not; I think we all agree on slavery, eg.  RMS would go further and
argue that no economic benefit to proprietary software could make it
ethical.  Etc.)


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What are those two straight lines for?  "Free software rules."