@mayel Yeah, I'm really hoping this turns into some more decentralization-focused work on Git, as well as increased funding/support for the GitLab team to improve what they've got.
That said, the number of Microsoft apologists is astounding and incredibly disheartening.
@mayel @jjg Oh, absolutely. One of the worst parts of going through the CS program at my University (and there were a lot of bad parts) was seeing how woefully uninformed the developer (or at least the upcoming developer) community was about the ethics of FLOSS and the inherent flaws of developing software for capitalist industries.
We even had a mandatory ethics course where I thought maybe some of that stuff would be addressed... No dice, though.
As much as I'd like to blame capitalism, I'm not sure that's the whole thing here.
Microsoft is an abusive company, but they go in cycles so that every 5 years of so there is a fresh set of users who think they have "changed", only to get bitten once MS has them in a corner.
I've lived through at least 4 generations of this. Almost nobody learns.
I have been working in tech for near 30 years, and literally the only people I encounter who *genuinely* believe in FOSS as a wider social force for good (not simply yet another aspect of profit making business) seem to be found on Mastodon (and a great number of them on social.coop instance, although thats to be expected)
The fact that FLOSS ethics is not a part of the wider political progressive movement is so tragic to me.
Social and economic progress rely on changing the underlying systems in place, systems which are already rapidly changing... thanks to technology. But if that technology isn't free, libre, and open, how could we possibly have true social+economic progress come out of it?
in 1990s I drifted apart from all of my techie friends at highschool; they *all* stayed at uni and took lucrative jobs to supply equipment via companies like DEC, HP to MOD/Royal Navy or the AWE Aldermaston (who make *actual* atomic bombs). (in context I lived in Reading which is where these companies are/were based).
They weren't bad lads who *wanted* WW 3, they just felt "we've studied hard and should reap the rewards".
@gabe @jjg @mayel @vfrmedia I can imagine this being the case in the US, where colleges tend to relate educational materials heavily to how they'd be used in jobs, and jobs tend to be framed as things that one would only ever be done for money.
Given this, it'd take additional effort to come to consider the notion of applying CS concepts for reasons besides money making. #culture
this is also a problem in England (I don't know if its better in Scotland, different system there). Germany's employers are also obsessed with qualifications, a 1st degree won't do any more, you need a masters to get many tech jobs.
once that pressure and debt are put on young people (who also have given up a good bite of their youth to study), many of them will take whatever job pays (unless maybe they have other spiritual belief that encourages ethical thought)
Maybe the difference between a renewable power plant and a nuclear power plant? Both ways of producing software / energy, but one or ethical and community-friendly and the other is toxic and wasteful?
I saw people fight against DRM, against vendor lock in, advocate for federation against silos, build tech against massive surveillance. And yet, very few times I've heard anyone mentioning capitalism as the common denominator here.
Anti-capitalism and free software are a perfect match. I would love to see a critique of capitalism emerge from the FLOSS communities. But I would love as well to see anti-capitalists consider FLOSS as a good praxis, not only to fight capitalism now, but also for the post-capitalist era that we need.
@MatejLach so I think the idea of Free Software has been thriving so far. The basic praxis of maintaining a software project with contributions is there. (It's not perfect, but it's there).
So, maybe we need "Phase 2"? A more political analysis of what free software is needed for, how do we pay contributors (and not devs of the most popular/profitable projects)? How do we protect it and strengthen it?
And this might mean "alienating" people that don't want to see FLOSS as political.
@alxcndr Agreed, especially because it seems it's more "open-source" thriving than "free software" at the moment.
Sadly, few understand the difference, or find it important.
i'm currently reading a biography of rms (Free As In Freedom), and the impression i've got is that he mostly doesn't speak out more about his more general leftist views because he doesn't feel as comfortable or confident outside of his CS wheelhouse, and he figured that plenty of other people were fighting the other big evils (racism, capitalism, etc), so he should focus on this one smaller (but admittedly growing) evil that he has expertise in.
@juliebean Interesting... it must take some humble pie to do that when you have a platform like he does. I guess it's a nice counterexample to those asserting that he is quite ego driven, (I think this impression of him is just because he doesn't have much patience for interviews).
agreed, too many people get a platform and go spouting off on stuff they're ignorant about, it is good seeing someone who knows when to leave it to others who are better suited for it. and yeah, he's definitely an intense, uncompromising sort of dude, but i definitely don't get the impression he's ego driven.
@alxcndr @gabe @mayel @jjg @vfrmedia
the problem with using the word "capitalism" as the shared devil is that it means *vastly* different things to different people. Dymitri gives the definitions he uses as a preface to his talk about #VentureCommunism, in an attempt to bridge this gap:
@alxcndr @gabe @mayel @jjg @vfrmedia there's a significant subsection of the #SoftwareFreedom movement (ESR is an early example) who see "anti-capitalist" and read it as "against what I believe in". Even though it really isn't, for reasons Dymitri explains. Some other folks have tried to bridge the gap with #C4SS.org and 'Markets not Capitalism', ie being anti-capitalist but pro-markets (with an emphasis on the plural, not The Market), but so far that seems to have had limited impact.
A Fediverse instance for people interested in cooperative and collective projects.