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Date:      Tue, 22 May 2001 10:23:37 +0200
From:      Rahul Siddharthan <>
To:        Ted Mittelstaedt <>
Cc:        Greg Lehey <>, Brian Raynes <>, freebsd-advocacy@FreeBSD.ORG
Subject:   Re: [dn-core] Re: Perens' "Free Software Leaders Stand Together"
Message-ID:  <>
In-Reply-To: <000001c0e213$5c706660$>; from on Mon, May 21, 2001 at 09:30:34AM -0700
References:  <> <000001c0e213$5c706660$>

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> >This is the context of my earlier remarks on "activism" on issues
> >like DeCSS -- such activism simply does not exist in the BSD world.
> >Ted's entire response to my mail was to justify in detail why
> >there's no point in doing anything.
> For me it's that issue only - it's more of a "choose your battles"
> thing, and I've not chosen DeCSS, I've chosen other things.  (like
> the Microsoft business)  But, I'd say that while it's overstating to
> say there's _no_ activism, I think your probably close to the mark
> that there is a lot less than among the GPL.

Yes, what I meant was that the community doesn't do battles.  You as
an individual might, but I've never heard of a case where the BSD
community thought a particular law, or a particular company's
policies, or a particular situation in the industry, was unfair and
rallied against it.  Unless you count the AT&T lawsuit.

> >I don't have a problem with any of this.  If the BSD people
> >want to focus on improving their code, well, that indicates focus and
> >commitment, and those are good things.
> >
> >BUT -- if the same BSD people then turn around and complain that Bruce
> >Perens isn't asking them to sign his petition -- *that* I have a
> >problem with.  That's hypocrisy.   That's wanting things both ways.
> >
> No, that's not because I don't subscribe to the _world BSD view_ if
> such a thing exists.
> It might be hypocrisy for someone like _Greg_ to demand a place on
> Bruce's petition, because Greg seems opposed to that kind of activism,
> so that would be consistent for him.  But, it's not hypocrisy for _me_
> to be demanding it because I've been more activist.

You as an individual are hardly noticed outside the BSD world.  If the
BSD *community* had been more activist, Perens would surely have
thought of inviting a few people.  But the more vocal part of the BSD
community is either silent on issues broader than an operating system,
or else so consistently anti-GNU, anti-GPL, that it's no surprise he
didn't think of asking.

Given that the letter he wrote (and Microsoft's attack) was
specifically about the GPL, are you, or other people in the BSD world
who are feeling "left out", willing to write another letter?  No need
to invite the Perens crowd to sign.  The letter could simply go like
this: "We work on BSD operating systems, we try to avoid using the GPL
and don't always agree with the FSF ideology, but nevertheless we
disagree with Microsoft's recent statements, for these reasons..."  
I have a feeling that a number of people may prefer to write "We agree
with Microsoft on these issues" though...

> >I'm thinking of expanding these views into a longer article, but
> >thought I'd see how people react...
> >
> Just keep in mind that the BSD people like being tarred by the same brush
> even less than the Linux people do.  Be careful and you should do fine.

Will keep this list posted :)

- Rahul

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