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Eric W. Sink: Open Source vs. Free Software

Sep 17, 2000, 16:18 (8 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Eric W. Sink)

"About a year ago, it used to really annoy me that people were trying to use the terms 'Free Software' and 'Open Source' to have different meanings. The rift appeared to be completely gratuitous, caused by Richard Stallman's apparent inability to see the perspective of anyone else. This bugged me."

"Conversely, I used to get really annoyed at people like Eric Raymond and Tim O'Reilly for their apparent efforts to distance themselves from Richard Stallman. Granted, Stallman doesn't exactly present himself well in traditional business contexts, but why couldn't they work harder to acknowledge his enormous achievements and contributions?...."

"I've already made the assertion that Open Source and Free Software are completely different, due to the fact that their core mission is completely different. Now I'm going to make another assertion: The Free Software community has a lot more excellence in it than the Open Source community. Think about it. Whether you agree with Richard Stallman or not, I think you have to admire his level of focus. I have never seen Richard take an action which is out of alignment with his core mission of promoting freedom for software users. Everywhere he goes, he teaches other people how to be a part of his cause. He has built a network consisting of thousands of disciples, all over the world. I would characterize those people as a group with a remarkably consistent pursuit of a singular vision."

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