Re: [ox-en] Re: Nationalism, protectionism and Free software advocacy, was: Re: [ox-en] Manifiesto para Lula (fwd)
- From: Russell McOrmond <russell flora.ca>
- Date: Mon, 27 Jan 2003 14:30:06 -0500 (EST)
On Sat, 25 Jan 2003, Graham Seaman wrote:
It's usually combined with another argument - that by using free
software, countries with no proprietary software industry can create a
programming skills base (rather than a set of microsoft button-pushers)
and a services-based computer industry.
This policy was the reason why the USA did not honor foreign copyright
until fairly recently.
Until 1891, US copyright protection was restricted to US citizens but
various restrictions on foreign copyrights remained in force (for
example, printing had to be on US typesets) which delayed US entry to
the Berne Copyright Convention until as late as 1989, over 100 years
after the UK. It is for this reason that some readers may remember
purchasing books which had on the cover the words: "For copyright
reasons this edition is not for sale in the U.S.A."
In this case, rather than outright rejecting the copyright claimed on
proprietary products (which is an entirely legitimate public policy
decision for any country to make), these countries are taking a very
international approach and instead building their domestic software
industry by promoting post-proprietary software services.
I am always happy to see less-industrialized nations leap-frogging the
mistakes that are currently being made in the industrialized nations of
trying to pull intellectual works into outdated concepts and business
models from the industrial era. "Software Manufacturing", being a legacy
concept, will eventually become a minimal component of the software
industry -- even within North America and Western Europe where it appears
to be popular today.
This is an extremely progressive reaction to the regressive
protectionist measures being pushed internationally by the USA and other
such countries. As others have said, adopting and even mandating Free
Software within a domestic context is anti-protectionist. While there may
be political techniques used to build domestic popular support which may
suggest other motives (IE: many politicians can use anti-USA rhetoric to
win support), I don't think this should detract from the major public
Russell McOrmond, Internet Consultant: <http://www.flora.ca/>
Any 'hardware assist' for communications, whether it be eye-glasses,
VCR's, or personal computers, must be under the control of the citizen
and not a third party. -- http://www.flora.ca/russell/