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If you have the IQ of the average freetard and still think the whole free software crusade is about freedom or something, this one is for you: Stallman has declared paid software manuals to be evil.

Since it’s impossible for a manual to have user restrictive features, and since you can’t gain additional knowledge by having access to the PDF/Postscript files (aka “the source” of the manual), what’s his excuse this time? Let’s see: “Paid manuals are hurting the communitah, because we can’t use them for free blah blah blah text text text, and for that reason paid manuals are evil and must be destroyed”.

I particularly liked the sentence: “The authors of the good manuals had written them for O’Reilly Associates, which published them with restrictive terms which exclude them from the free software community”. Yeah, never mind that 300 years of copyright explicitly give ownership of a work to the author and the publisher(s) he/she may have given written permission to publish the work, nooo, all works belong to the communitah, and those authors and publishers are taking them away from the communitah! Also note the gratuitous use of “we” in the article, another common trait of closet communists.

PS: I know, this FUD is a bit old and some other member has already brought it up in some comment/stream post (can’t remember exactly), but I am writing it here in the hope that AdamBeFree will read it, understand that the free software crusade by the FSF is not some fight for freedom but just a few hippies yelling at a police car, and finally decide to get a Mac and get on with his life.

#1 Posted by Gesh on Oct 4, 2011 9:19 AM

I doubt that someone, who is calling Android GNU/Android and has random
biblical meltdowns, is of sound mind.

Anyways, the next step is declaring paid fiction to be evil. Since I have to pay for The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, is the book evil now? And I guess if I ask him (RMS), how the hell does he imagine authors putting their novels for free, I’m sure the answer will be, that I should tone down my taste and read free essays by random schoolboys.

#2 Posted by Chlorus on Oct 4, 2011 6:25 PM

I’ve always wondered how long it would take for O’Reilly to be thrown under the bus by the Freetard crowd they cater to. Without O’Reilly, FOSS adoption would be practically non-existent – they do the job that the online documentation should have done in the first place.

#3 Posted by DrLoser on Oct 4, 2011 6:31 PM

Thrown under the bus?

Hmm. That would require two things:

(1) Freetards actually reading O’Reilly books. *nix programmers (buy and) read the books, don’t get me wrong … but we’re talking Loons here. They wouldn’t understand them even if they read them. Hell, Adam can’t even cut’n'paste out of K&R.
(2) Tim giving a monkey’s. At this point the Linux Admin, PHP Codez, Bash Scripting corners of the O’Reilly empire are marginal at best. He probably makes more money out of Scala and Ruby, let along the never-ending Framework du Jour thing.

Like Google, Oracle, IBM and even Red Hat, O’Reilly has moved on. Once you get sufficient traction on the market, you really don’t care what RMS says.

#4 Posted by administrator on Oct 4, 2011 6:32 PM

Chlorus, I couldn’t agree more. Nearly all the early FOSS technologies I learned were from Oreilly books. Most of the online documentation for Java, PHP and mySQL was woefully out of date, to the point where people started building sites dedicated to hosting their own, clearer version of the docs for things like PHP.

#5 Posted by DrLoser on Oct 4, 2011 6:34 PM

Has anybody offered RMS a recording contract for that horrible “Hackers Be Free” song of his? I genuinely think it would be a great contribution to mankind. He’s never going to turn it down, is he?

I would also like to hear it covered by Take That. With the backing of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. And a Hammond Organ.

Ideas for the B-side welcome, and then I’ll IM Bill G with the suggestion.

#6 Posted by administrator on Oct 4, 2011 6:35 PM

A friend of mine described that song best:

(off key) “join us now and share the software…” [3 minutes of random drumming]

#7 Posted by DrLoser on Oct 4, 2011 6:40 PM

It’s the face on the poor Latino sods that are forced to listen to it that really make it great. If MTV was around in the 1950s, this would be it.

I presume he wasn’t filmed using one of those modern portentous telephonic things; it would be absolutely awful if he gave his position away to Those Who Would Do RMS Harm.

#8 Posted by DrLoser on Oct 4, 2011 6:42 PM

Actually, I take that back.

I have no traction whatsoever in the market, and I still don’t care what RMS says.

#9 Posted by ReverseControllerSE on Oct 4, 2011 6:56 PM

I think that song is wonderful, well, judged from a FOSS point-of-view, if only Linux was that good.

Well, one can but dream.


That song is also honest – they want free stuff (and that’s really all there is to it).

A rare thing among the loons.

#10 Posted by ChrisTX on Oct 4, 2011 9:01 PM

“Given that writing good English is a rare skill among programmers, we can ill afford to lose manuals this way.”

Explain that please.

“For example, I don’t think you or I are obliged to give permission to modify articles like this one, which describe our actions and our views.”

Freedom as in CC-NY-ND ? O rite.

“It is also no problem to require modified versions to include notice that they were modified, even to have entire sections that may not be deleted or changed, as long as these sections deal with nontechnical topics. (Some GNU manuals have them.)”

Free as in, we chose what free is. Also notice how this point is backed by GNU manuals which de facto have limitations now. We limit it, so it is ok, since WE do it.

“[Note: We maintain a page that lists free books available from other publishers].”

Task for you: Go there, find something newer than 2005 (mostly 2001-2003 from what I’ve seen).

I wonder another thing: If documentation must be free, is RedHat the devil for selling certifications of knowledge about said documentation?

#11 Posted by imgx64 on Oct 4, 2011 10:57 PM


The GFDL is a truly horrible license, and even the Debian developers agree:

#12 Posted by unixisc on Oct 31, 2011 5:27 AM

This part was my favorite from this page

“That wasn’t the first time this sort of thing has happened, and (to our community’s great loss) it was far from the last. Proprietary manual publishers have enticed a great many authors to restrict their manuals since then. Many times I have heard a GNU user eagerly tell me about a manual that he is writing, with which he expects to help the GNU Project—and then had my hopes dashed, as he proceeded to explain that he had signed a contract with a publisher that would restrict it so that we cannot use it.”

If only rms paid these authors something comparable, he could have his manuals which he could then set free. Methinks he ought to go into counterfeiting or bitcoin mining to get around this problem

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