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rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


carry on then posted:

ok, now that we've established that any use of open source is immoral, how do we punish people for perpetuating systems of inequality by using it?

(USER WAS PUT ON PROBATION FOR THIS POST)

i mean like if this was a serious question it's addressed in the FAQ section

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rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


quote:

"“So are you saying all open source software is bad?”

No. [...]"

let me know if there's anything I can clear up for you

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


I really wanted to try to separate out the first point from the second and third but without the motivation of the first i think a call to action falls flat, and the second and third are tied together in a viscous cycle.

anyway if you didn't want to read seven pages of me seriousposting I can definitely understand but it's a real problem and its why all the wealth in the software industry is concentrated in a very few hands and if you're an open source author you should really ask yourself why.

Hed
Mar 31, 2004



Fun Shoe

I read it, it makes sense. I don’t see how any company would use any software that a creator could revoke permission to use. but that’s probably fine.

carry on then
Jul 10, 2010


rotor posted:

let me know if there's anything I can clear up for you

I was more responding to the other article posted which arrives at the conclusion that open source is immoral on its face.

Hammerite
Mar 9, 2007

And you don't remember what I said here, either, but it was pompous and stupid.

Jade Ear Joe

I read the Goodman-Wilson article and found plenty in it that I could agree with and plenty that I would quibble with him about. I then read Rotor's article expecting to find the same thing again, but in the end found I agreed with virtually all of it. The only thing I can't see eye to eye with either article on is the supposed importance of having an open-source portfolio in order to get a job. Maybe it is because I don't move around much and the area where I live is a backwater as far as "the tech world" is concerned, but I haven't perceived this.

The main issue I have with Goodman-Wilson's article is that he places substantial emphasis on the difficulties faced by open-source developers who decide to slavishly devote themselves to maintaining a project. He does this in a way that seems to ignore the agency those developers have to say no to people. I think it weakens his position.

Are you intending to publish that somewhere, Rotor?

rjmccall
Sep 7, 2007

no worries friend

Fun Shoe

Hed posted:

I read it, it makes sense. I don’t see how any company would use any software that a creator could revoke permission to use. but that’s probably fine.

yeah, the vision here seems to be that people pay for temporary, revocable licenses for all their software; that’s pretty wildly customer-unfriendly, if you saw poo poo like that in any other context you’d recognize it as exploitative. it puts customers completely at the mercy of their software makers, who can legally shut down their entire business at the drop of a hat. it’s a world where actually everybody develops almost all their software in-house and from scratch instead of ever getting to build on other people’s work and expertise

and it kindof feels like that’s the point, that the whole thing is motivated by a fear that the jobs are all going away. but i’m pretty sure if this were widespread it would actually just make software intractable for almost everybody and there would be way fewer jobs

except actually it wouldn’t do any of that, the market would just demand sane licensing/sales terms

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


carry on then posted:

I was more responding to the other article posted which arrives at the conclusion that open source is immoral on its face.

ok fair enough

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


Hammerite posted:

Are you intending to publish that somewhere, Rotor?

I feel like I just did. Feel free to share it with anyone.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


rjmccall posted:

except actually it wouldn’t do any of that, the market would just demand sane licensing/sales terms

Exactly. If Facebook wants certainty, they can pay you for your work.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


Is there any other field in which people just routinely give away the net product of months of work?

Is it really surprising that given the fact that we now expect even the most sophisticated software to not only come at no cost, but to have robust documentation and support, that the only thing worth money is user data?

And given that, is it really surprising that Google and Facebook exist as advertising companies?

There's a straight line between the way open source is commonly practiced and the corporate panopticon and no one wants to talk about it.

rjmccall
Sep 7, 2007

no worries friend

Fun Shoe

i get your argument about not giving stuff away to google and facebook for free

but those companies are not actually built on top of open-source software in any way that fits your narrative about having gotten big by exploiting massive free labor. when they heavily use open-source projects, they’re pretty much always huge contributors, assuming they didn’t start the project themselves. the alternative to open-source here is just that all of that work is fully proprietary to those same companies. google is perfectly capable of writing its own os instead of funding linux

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


rjmccall posted:

i get your argument about not giving stuff away to google and facebook for free

but those companies are not actually built on top of open-source software in any way that fits your narrative about having gotten big by exploiting massive free labor. when they heavily use open-source projects, they’re pretty much always huge contributors, assuming they didn’t start the project themselves. the alternative to open-source here is just that all of that work is fully proprietary to those same companies. google is perfectly capable of writing its own os instead of funding linux

I'm not really sure I agree, but regardless that's ancillary to the argument I'm making above.

Shaggar
Apr 26, 2006


Nap Ghost

open sores in the true linux sense is very bad.

open sores in the microsoft is doing 99.9999% of development but the source is there for me to look at for implementation details sense is very good.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


hi shagger

in a well actually
Jan 26, 2011

dude, you gotta end it on the rhyme



rjmccall posted:

i get your argument about not giving stuff away to google and facebook for free

but those companies are not actually built on top of open-source software in any way that fits your narrative about having gotten big by exploiting massive free labor. when they heavily use open-source projects, they’re pretty much always huge contributors, assuming they didn’t start the project themselves. the alternative to open-source here is just that all of that work is fully proprietary to those same companies. google is perfectly capable of writing its own os instead of funding linux

fuschia lol

but in general im skeptical about restrictive licenses as a way to prevent unethical use of ur code because companies will reimplement, license an alternative, or steal as needed

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


PCjr sidecar posted:

but in general im skeptical about restrictive licenses as a way to prevent unethical use of ur code because companies will reimplement, license an alternative, or steal as needed

This is completely correct. But you don't have to grease the wheels for them, and if you want to stop evil people from doing evil things then probably step zero is "stop helping evil people."

Cybernetic Vermin
Apr 18, 2005



it is a hugely interesting direction to think about, but kind of agree that maybe the lingering threat of the software being pulled for any reason is a bit much. it is nice if software can be reasonably useful to a lot of people too.

possibly one would get pretty far by defining a trust charter which covers specific cases (e.g. military, police, surveillence) without the original developer having revocation rights on top. to that way strike a balance where usage rights can still be guided intelligently (as opposed to codifying a license which fails to cover the next atrocity), while letting more moral enterprises rest pretty easy that they wont get the rug pulled on them for something entirely unexpected.

otoh that only really considers specifically the ethics bit, but i am not sure all parts can be well solved together.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


Cybernetic Vermin posted:

it is a hugely interesting direction to think about, but kind of agree that maybe the lingering threat of the software being pulled for any reason is a bit much.


So I think the way this would go for people who insist that corporations using their software is a net good is software trusts with specific legally binding language about when a grant may or may not be revoked.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


Cybernetic Vermin posted:

possibly one would get pretty far by defining a trust charter which covers specific cases (e.g. military, police, surveillence) without the original developer having revocation rights on top. to that way strike a balance where usage rights can still be guided intelligently (as opposed to codifying a license which fails to cover the next atrocity), while letting more moral enterprises rest pretty easy that they wont get the rug pulled on them for something entirely unexpected.

yeah, that

in a well actually
Jan 26, 2011

dude, you gotta end it on the rhyme



rotor posted:

This is completely correct. But you don't have to grease the wheels for them, and if you want to stop evil people from doing evil things then probably step zero is "stop helping evil people."

i dont disagree, but i have a hard time getting my head around what the follow-on effects would look like; im not just throwing sand into the gears of the me-palantir, but me-otherdev, otherdev-otherclient, etc.

‘stop helping evil people’ at the cost of ‘stop helping some non-evil people’ when the cost to evil people of me not helping evil people is low or nonexistent; but how much of helping non-evil folks ultimately benefits evil?

idk

Cybernetic Vermin
Apr 18, 2005



PCjr sidecar posted:

when the cost to evil people of me not helping evil people is low or nonexistent

i think one of the biggest hurdles is precisely overcoming this: the incorrect idea that software is somehow largely worthless despite being huge business.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


PCjr sidecar posted:

i dont disagree, but i have a hard time getting my head around what the follow-on effects would look like; im not just throwing sand into the gears of the me-palantir, but me-otherdev, otherdev-otherclient, etc.

‘stop helping evil people’ at the cost of ‘stop helping some non-evil people’ when the cost to evil people of me not helping evil people is low or nonexistent; but how much of helping non-evil folks ultimately benefits evil?

idk

So for individual hobbyists i think this entire thing is a nonissue. If you get your license revoked for whatever dumb reason you'll just do what everyone will: pirate it anyway because who gives a poo poo

for companies, it means that if they want some assurances then they'll have to pay money for it, or if the dev isn't willing to sell and they're not willing to do a cleanroom version then they'll have to hew to whatever moral standards the dev demands.

The entire open source movement has been, for some bizzare reason, entirely focused on the rights of the software consumer and I think it's weird as hell.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


Cybernetic Vermin posted:

the incorrect idea that software is somehow largely worthless despite being huge business.

this is EXACTLY problem #2

rjmccall
Sep 7, 2007

no worries friend

Fun Shoe

you just have a really different idea in your head of what open-source development communities look like than anything i have ever seen

i'm not saying it's wrong, open source can be very different from community to community

but in my experience open source is 90% a low-friction way for companies to collaborate that would completely just not happen if executives had to hammer out a contract and a working group for every new idea. and if anything it's usually massively to the benefit of the smaller partners, who get to make product changes that would never happen otherwise because they're too far down the big companies' priority list (or they're actively uninterested in). like making something work on top of a different database or take commands remotely or support big-endian systems or something. and then everyone else benefits from it being available even if they don't contribute. the alternative to that is just a lot of silos

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


yeah I don't really have anything to say about companies producing open source software, my screed is directed at individuals.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


i mean other than the whole "this process drives the value of the product of our labor to zero" thing of course

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


which as it turns out is super great for places like facebook, google and apple

MononcQc
May 29, 2007

"I believe I did, Bob."



My experience with Open Source software as the maintainer of a build tool for a language is that everyone just hopes you make their entire loving development teams more productive but won't take 5 minutes to actually fill the issue template directly and if you're lucky you're gonna get 2-3 contributors who hang around for 2-3 years each.

Large corporations like WhatsApp will actually poo poo publicly on the work you do as not being scalable to their org and mega private repos for which they give you no details unless you as an individual go and reach out directly to some employees you met before and set up relationships with them to fix the issues before they do a big public presentation where they dunk on you for not knowing how to scale poo poo and just dropping with "but we're now fixing it for you all" PR stuff at a conference.

I'd like to thank the person at WhatsApp who actually agreed to sit down with me and test poo poo and help improve the code base, and let us release major improvements before another person at WhatsApp made their big public announcement and instead had to change their slides for "it used to be inadequate but now it's fine, but by the way we're still looking to replace that tool"

MononcQc
May 29, 2007

"I believe I did, Bob."



My other experience with open source is Ericsson nearly killing their tech 20 years ago, employees managing to convince them to open source it, and then the company readopting the tech and maintaining it for me to make a career out of it.

In short, OSS is a land of contrast.

I would sure like to have the ability to put my code license in a trust where it's obvious that if you're looking to run your business to conveniently build more blockchains to track immigrants, you're stuck at least implementing all your loving tools from scratch, or use another language (and another community) to do your poo poo.

The libertarians and pro-business dipshits who keep yelling at hobbyists who dared to pick a GPL'd license because they can't turn the free labour into a self-serve business can keep using the licenses that exist today.

in a well actually
Jan 26, 2011

dude, you gotta end it on the rhyme



rotor posted:

So for individual hobbyists i think this entire thing is a nonissue. If you get your license revoked for whatever dumb reason you'll just do what everyone will: pirate it anyway because who gives a poo poo

for companies, it means that if they want some assurances then they'll have to pay money for it, or if the dev isn't willing to sell and they're not willing to do a cleanroom version then they'll have to hew to whatever moral standards the dev demands.

The entire open source movement has been, for some bizzare reason, entirely focused on the rights of the software consumer and I think it's weird as hell.

im thinking less about first order direct consumer effects but more about community, for lack of a better word-network effects.

i can license my ethical kubernetes alternative but if no one adopts it no one benefits from my work and I don’t benefit from publishing it

MononcQc
May 29, 2007

"I believe I did, Bob."



you wouldn't benefit from it anyway because google owns the project and nobody will use your alternative unless some other big corporation takes over it and sells it without giving you a dime for it. Then you would get a side-benefit like improved reputation and maybe being invited at confs that begrudgingly pay their speakers, but you would still have to go through the same loving interview process as everyone else if you ever wanted to get paid for it by the people actually using your code for money.

The only free passes you get that are worth money is when you get hired as an advertising stunt for devrel, further hiring measures, or as a way to have a company position itself as friendly to a community.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


PCjr sidecar posted:

im thinking less about first order direct consumer effects but more about community, for lack of a better word-network effects.

i can license my ethical kubernetes alternative but if no one adopts it no one benefits from my work and I don’t benefit from publishing it

so yeah this is problem 3, and why it's strongly meshed with problem 2.

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


my response(s) would be:

  • if you're giving away your software to meet people, maybe you can find a better way to meet people.
  • If you're giving away your software in order to drive your resume, maybe cut out the middleman (ie, prospective employers) and sell your software directly instead of writing free software in the hope that someone will pay you for it.

MrMoo
Sep 14, 2000



rotor posted:

Is there any other field in which people just routinely give away the net product of months of work?

You really cannot think of any? :aaaaa:

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


MrMoo posted:

You really cannot think of any? :aaaaa:

not really, no. Let's hear em big guy.

power botton
Nov 2, 2011



doctors go to school for like dozens of years, not just months, and then give away oxycontin which makes me feel a lot better than running software

rotor
Jun 11, 2001

Official Carrier
of the Neil Bush Torch

 
 
 
 
teh butts


well ya got me there

qirex
Feb 15, 2001



a lot of early career designers get caught up in spec work or contests/bakeoffs to try to build out their portfolios

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Cybernetic Vermin
Apr 18, 2005



which is not fully comparable, but analogous in that that too is pretty hosed up.

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