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FSFE opposes claim that free software harms consumers

Does no-cost software harm consumers? The FairSearch coalition thinks so, at least when it comes to Google: They say Google engages in predatory pricing when it distributes Android – a Linux-based mobile operating system – without charge. Recently, FSFE (Free Software Foundation Europe) responded in a letter to the European Commission, labeling as “wrong” and “dangerous” FairSearch’s claims, and saying further:

“The predatory pricing theory proposed by FairSearch is plainly unsuitable to describe a market where there is no price, and a product that, being Free Software, can literally be taken by anybody and “forked” … . There is no “below cost” distribution in Free Software, because the price which market participants set … in these circumstances is precisely zero.”