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Re: [ox-en] Free software entry on wiki

Hi Tom!

Am Sonntag 08 Mai 2005 11:02 schrieb Tom Chance:
On Saturday 07 May 2005 18:02, Thomas U. Grüttmüller wrote:

* Free software can be a commoodity initially. E.g. Blender was sold for
  100.000 €.
* Once, free software has started circulating in public, the product
itself is not a commodity anymore (e.g. when the program has become a
part of Debian). * But...
  * Copies of the program can still be a commodity, in situations causing
    natural scarcity (i.e. not everybody has a flatrate to download
Blender and all its dependencies.)
  * On the other hand, artificial scarcity can hardly be added. (When you
can get a copy from a friend, nobody can force you to buy a copy from,
say, Microsoft).

That's interesting, though I think it's questionable whether you can say
there is such a thing as "the product" and its "copies". Without getting
into a metaphysical debate about the ontology of "the product", I'd say
that it can be both a product shared and valued for its use and labour, and
a commodity traded on a market with exchange value added by various factors
(physical distribution media, etc.)

Hehe, I like your strictly materialistic point of view :o)

Before touching it, I'd prefer to know whether people in this community
are serious about research or serious about putting forward a distorted
Marxist interpretation of every aspect of free software theory?

You are part of this community, so you can answer yourself whether you
are interested in serious research.

The Oekonux topic is

 1. What are the principles of free software?
 2. How can they be transferred to other areas?
 3. Can a society be built on these principles?

A Marxist interpretation of free software is imho legitim, but it is
certainly not the only one.

Yes, it is legitimate, but whilst lurking on this list I have seen, in
almost every paper that has been posted, a tendency to completely distort
reality in favour of Marxist interpretations.

Maybe the project has not attracted enough non-marxists, yet.

IMO a libertarian hacker 
ought to be able to read your paper and find no fault in your analysis,
only in the principles and assumptions upon which you operate.

I agree.

Problems occur when you investigate the first topic ("what are the
principles...") with a mind to proving the second ("how can they be 
transferred [in light of Marxism]...").  

From my perspective, the second question does not have to do much with 

There is already a very successful transfer project: Wikipedia, the free 
encyclopedia. (Unfortunately, Oekonux has failed to analyse this phenomenon 

So on the question of exchange vs. use vs. labour value, it is more honest
and interesting to first ask questions about why free software is created
and how the product should be considered, than it is to just say "free
software isn't a commodity, let's see what this means in other areas and
for society as a whole".


I didn't mean to suggest that the topic of Oekonux is pointless, only that
I have become a little fed up with the approach I've seen so far.

Then go for another approach :o)

What I don't like about the article is that it tries to explain free
software from scratch. In this way, it is competing with the Wikipedia
article, which it imho shouldn't do. Imho all parts that are relevant for
general audience should go to the Wikipedia, the Oekonux article on the
other hand should consist of a short summary, a link to the Wikipedia
article, and additions too special for the Wikipedia.

Yes, and that might help avoid the questionable distortions too!

Questionable distortions can be avoided by running the main space of the wiki 
in Document Mode (NPOV/MPOV) -- like in the Wikipedia.

Thomas }:o{#

Contact: projekt

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