root almighty

Rui Miguel Silva Seabra rms at
Tue May 19 22:25:34 CEST 2009

On Tue, May 19, 2009 at 01:44:49PM -0400, Jim Ancona wrote:
> On Tue, May 19, 2009 at 11:59 AM, Rui Miguel Silva Seabra <rms at> wrote:
> > On Tue, May 19, 2009 at 07:23:38AM -0700, Gothnet wrote:
> >> What's proprietary about android?
> >
> > The DRM locking you out of applying changes to phones. The excuse of "oh, its the
> > phone maker/operator that does it" is a mere smoke screen.
> >
> > And no, an unbricked android phone does not count as Free Software since you're
> > possibly breaking the law (in the US thanks to the DMCA, and in EU thanks to the
> > EUCD).
> Are you talking about Android, or are you talking about phones that
> run it? Obviously, most phones that run Android are proprietary. The
> Freerunner is not. That's got nothing to do with whether the Android
> OS is free software.

Well, since Freedom 0 is hampered in practice, as well as freedom 3, and
without freedoms 0 and 3, 1 and 2 aren't of much use, I can't label software
oriented towards being DRM friendly as Free Software, in practice.

And software that is only Free Software in theory... well, that doesn't quite
cut it, for me.

> >> Android is under the APL2, which has even less restriction than the GPL,
> >
> > Only on a superficial level can that be true. It has less restrictions than the
> > GPL because the later tries to make sure everyone has all the essencial freedoms.
> According to the FSF, Apache 2 is a free software license:

We're miscommunicating. What I'm saying is that the end result is more restricted
software rather than more Free Software, hence only from a superficial level can
it be considered as less restricted. At an atomical level, yes, but life doesn't
end there :(

I can't properly configure IBM HTTPd Server because IBM (in Portugal) is claiming not
to support our configuration (more PCI:DSS oriented), so bummer for APL :)

> To the extent that the Freerunner is a "free phone" (proprietary bits
> like the GSM modem and wifi notwithstanding), if you run Android on it
> you will be using a free phone with a free as in freedom operating
> system.

Yes, but I am using my freedom of choice to choose not to support a model oriented
towards reducing user freedom, and my freedom of speech to advocate against it. :)

Crappy (but with strong and promising signs for the future) as the current
telephony apps are, I'll take them any day first rather than Android.


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