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Stallman Selling Autographs

CmdrTaco posted more than 8 years ago | from the happy-hacking-should-be-trademarked dept.

335

UltimaGuy writes "Sports stars, musicians, and other celebrities have been charging for autographs for years, but who would have thought Richard Stallman would be doing the same? Is this just for fun, or a clever, highly effective protest? Hackers, geeks and nerds gathered together at the 7th FISL - Internacional Free Software Forum, in Porto Alegre (Brazil) last week, were astounded when they got word that Richard Stallman, the founding father of the Free Software Foundation and creator of the GPL, was charging R$ 10 (about US$ 3) for an autograph and R$ 5 (less than US$ 2) to get his picture taken by free software enthusiasts at the event floor."

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Yes, but... (5, Funny)

Jonathan (5011) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231545)

Does RMS allow anyone to copy and modify those autographs?

Re:Yes, but... (4, Funny)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231551)

Only if you give credit to the original author.

Re:Yes, but... (4, Funny)

samkass (174571) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231649)

...And rename your Autographs business GNU/Autographs.

Re:Yes, but... (2, Funny)

mogul (103400) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231559)

Or use the autographs where they see fit?

Re:Yes, but... (2, Insightful)

Rakshasa Taisab (244699) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231717)

Of course, it's like the GPL. He charges for the service of participating in the creation of the works, while the subsequent copying and distribution is Free[tm].

Excellent point! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231775)

Great point!

wut an ass (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231546)

enough said

Neither fun nor protest (2)

JeffTL (667728) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231548)

I'd venture to guess that RMS just wants some extra money for the FSF. In the article he says he wants to be compensated for the time it takes to sign and pose -- a fair request, I dare say.

Re:Neither fun nor protest (1)

mapkinase (958129) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231557)

As well as to diminish time spent fulfilling stupid requests.

Very Fair (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231642)

It's a very fair proposition. He also presents a very lucid and logical argument for his actions. But, that won't stop the free as in gratis Slashweenies from vilifying him.

I, however, did find it very amusing that he was arrogant enough to think that people would spend that much for his autograph. It must have been a bit deflating to have only made a couple of hundred dollars rather than the thousands that he had anticipated.

Re:Very Fair (2, Insightful)

wed128 (722152) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231827)

The man could use some deflation.

Re:Neither fun nor protest (2, Funny)

PepeGSay (847429) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231773)

I just want to be compensated for the code I write...

Re:Neither fun nor protest (1)

nstlgc (945418) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231785)

I look forward to see all the /. fanboys post excuses as to why this is valid, yet charging for software is wrong, wrong, wrong. I'm sorry, but I want to be compensated for the time it takes to design and implement -- a fair request, I dare say.

Takes alot more time than having the Whale pose for a photograph, too.

Re:Neither fun nor protest (4, Informative)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231809)

Poster sayeth:

yet charging for software is wrong, wrong, wrong.

You ought to read the GPL [gnu.org] . You can charge whatever price you want for any GPL'd software. That's one of the freedoms. You're also free to dual-license it if you're the creator - another freedom. It works for Trolltech (Qt), MySQL, etc.

GPL:

When we speak of free software, we are referring to freedom, not price. Our General Public Licenses are designed to make sure that you have the freedom to distribute copies of free software (and charge for this service if you wish)

I'd pay (3, Funny)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231549)

just to piss him off, if his point was to show that it's wrong to charge for photos.

Re:I'd pay (5, Funny)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231566)

Just call him RM$ from now on, that'll piss him off.

Re:I'd pay (1)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231608)

RM$, I stab at thee!

Re:I'd pay (1)

Lesrahpem (687242) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231697)

You sound like Steve Irwin.

Re:I'd pay (1)

mppm (898502) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231763)

I don't know what's more pathetic: someone actually paying for an RMS autograph, or someone actually taking time to comment on someone who actually paid for an RMS autograph. Wait a minute...

Re:I'd pay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231593)

just to piss him off, if his point was to show that it's wrong to charge for photos.

I'm probably missing somethign here, but why would that be his point? Charging for photos would seem like an odd way to denounce charging for photos.

I've never heard of RMS objecting to people charging for stuff.

Re:I'd pay (1)

LionKimbro (200000) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231841)

RMS argues that he's mainly concerned with Free as in Freedom, not at no cost. [gnu.org]

I see no philisophical argment against selling signatures or photo-ops.

More RMS-themed merchandise ideas (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231550)

The FSF should exploit RMS some more. I'm sure there are loads of products which could be based on RMS.

OMG!!! RMS PONIES!!!

Re:More RMS-themed merchandise ideas (3, Funny)

Keruo (771880) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231616)

a-ha!

1. bunch of ponies
2. ??
3. HURD

I see it now.

Re:More RMS-themed merchandise ideas (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231651)

What about selling beard hairs?

There arn't many stars with that many....

Slow down girls! (4, Funny)

Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231554)

There's now way the FSF fanboys will be able to make it past the crush of girls desperate to get close to the Man :-)

Re:Slow down girls! (1)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231579)

There's now way the FSF fanboys will be able to make it past the crush of girls desperate to get close to the Man :-)

So are you saying there is a way to make it past girls desperate to get close to RMS?

I think you might be right there...

we all know where the money is going (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231555)

with someone like Stallman you can be sure it's going into trinkets and geek toys, probably a new macbook. Stallman has been selling out from the begining.

Re:we all know where the money is going (1)

weg (196564) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231603)

with someone like Stallman you can be sure it's going into trinkets and geek toys, probably a new macbook

Oh, I'm sure Steve Jobs would give him a MacBook for free if he'd promise that he'd pose with it on the photos he sells to his fanboys ;-)

Re:we all know where the money is going (1)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231634)

Richard would want the Macbook to be Free, as in free for him to maintain and update. Jobs would do the usual thing.

Re:we all know where the money is going (0, Troll)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231614)

you can be sure it's going into trinkets and geek toys, probably a new macbook.

Well, I was kind of hoping he'd take some of that money and get himself a haircut. Maybe some new clothes if there's enough.

How much for a pic? (4, Funny)

nother_nix_hacker (596961) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231558)

Stallman would have to pay me to own a photo of him. Don't get me wrong, I like the guy but his regexp.c is prettier than him!

Re:How much for a pic? (1)

MustardMan (52102) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231818)

hello.jpg is prettier

Oh the irony... (3, Funny)

BobWeiner (83404) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231560)

I, for one, welcome our Nerd celebrity overlords.

In all seriousness, I applaud Stallman's ironic sense of humor.

Re:Oh the irony... (1)

svanstrom (734343) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231732)

I like Bill Gates ironic sense of humor also...

Actually from the FA (5, Informative)

Andy Gardner (850877) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231562)

It doesn't look like he was directly profiting from the autographs, rather he was autographing "in exchange for a contribution of 10 reais (5 dollars) for the Free Software Foundation."

Not quite Microsoft evil.

What a Great Idea. (4, Funny)

twitter (104583) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231676)

That's not a bad way to make money for the FSF. I'd pay for a signed copy of the GPL and some of his other essays. The documents would make a nice gift too. The only problem would be his ability to keep up with demand.

Re:What a Great Idea. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231730)

The documents would make a nice gift too.

Yeah... Ummm... Twitter, I'm uninviting you from my birthday party.

Re:What a Great Idea. (1)

c0l0 (826165) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231755)

You can actually buy GNU literature signed by RMS himself. Head over to https://agia.fsf.org/order/#manuals [fsf.org] and check the offers in the "General Titles" section.
 
A nice thing to have, and definately a proper way to spend your money - the FSF is a benevolent effort, and will become even more important in the years to come, when our lives will depend even more on computers and software than they do right now.

Re:Actually from the FA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231860)

It is not about where the money goes. It is about the arrogance and the blind following that actually makes it work. He doesn't want money he wants fame. He is just as bad as the "Corporate Sellouts" except he values fame over money. We all have different value set some people put Money over all other things some people are in their Intelligence, others their Morality, other are in Fame, others in physical possessions. Earlier on I give RMS Credit for what he did with Free Software but lately sence he has gotten a strong following he has to do more shake things up more. Fight those Evil Cooperate forces a little more so he will not faze out his glory. The world need people to can keep things in balance and RMS is not one of them.

Against what? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231563)

or a clever, highly effective protest?
Unless its "basic personal hygiene", I can't figure out what Stallman is supposed to be protesting against.

PS : Please don't reply "Whaddya got?"

RMS is starting to "get it"? :) (4, Insightful)

Ritz_Just_Ritz (883997) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231572)

RMS wrote:

"People who ask me to sign or pose are asking for some of my time, which needs must come from my other volunteer work for the cause. On most occasions, the total time involved is not very large, so I do as they ask, taking steps to make the process efficient. But this does not mean my time is theirs to dispose of. I think it is entirely proper to ask people to make a small contribution to the cause in exchange."

---

When I write a piece of open source code, that takes a bit of my time too and is sometimes boring. By RMS's logic, I should charge each user some sort of nuissance fee so that my time is better spent on more "productive pursuits" or somesuch. Hrmmmmm...

I do like the fact that he is starting to grasp how scarcity is managed in a capitalist economy though.

Re:RMS is starting to "get it"? :) (4, Insightful)

Svenne (117693) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231577)

Yes, and if you read the entire article you'll see that he's not opposed to selling software. What good is it to click on the link to the article and then only read half of it?

Re:RMS is starting to "get it"? :) (1)

Milton Waddams (739213) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231816)


What good is it to click on the link to the article and then only read half of it?


You're new here, aren't you.

Re:RMS is starting to "get it"? :) (5, Insightful)

vadim_t (324782) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231585)

If you'd ever read the GPL, you'd notice that source only needs to distributed to the people who got the binary, and the binary can be charged for. I never heard Stallman say that services like duplication, tech support, etc should be free. IIRC, Stallman has a webpage somewhere detailing his requirements if you want to have him give a talk, which sounds completely fine to me.

Stallman was always about freedom in the political sense, not in the lack of economic compensation one.

Re:RMS is starting to "get it"? :) (1)

TecKnow (902884) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231804)

If you'd ever read the GPL, you'd notice that source only needs to distributed to the people who got the binary, and the binary can be charged for.

I'm looking at the GPL right now and that does not appear to be true. Under "Terms and conditions for copying, distribution and modification" point 1 the second paragraph reads as follows:
You may charge a fee for the physical act of transferring a copy, and you may at your option offer warranty protection in exchange for a fee.
That seems to imply that you cannot charge a fee for the binary (and accompanying source code) that reflects your time to develop the software.

Even if this were not so, because the source code must acompany any binary distribution or be available to all third parties under point 3 of the same heading it would be difficult for the author to charge for more than the initial copy of the program unless those who already had it were unwilling to redistribute it themselves for some reason not related to the liscence. It would be virtually impossible for the creator to charge for more than the initial copy of any program intended for consumer use since consumers have no incentive not to copy amongst themselves.

I am not a lawyer, so I admit that my understanding may be flawed, please clarify your position.

Re:RMS is starting to "get it"? :) (1)

It'sYerMam (762418) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231859)

If you do a search in the GPL for 'charge' this is the first sentence that comes up:

Our General Public Licenses are designed to make sure that you have the freedom to distribute copies of free software (and charge for this service if you wish)

And from the GPL FAQ:

Does the GPL allow me to charge a fee for downloading the program from my site? Yes. You can charge any fee you wish for distributing a copy of the program. If you distribute binaries by download, you must provide "equivalent access" to download the source--therefore, the fee to download source may not be greater than the fee to download the binary.

What the GPL DOES mean, is that, while you can charge for distribution, this is (as I see it) intended as recompense for the expense of the act of distribution, not the act of creating the work. Anyone can distribute it for free if they wish, but people can and do make money from selling GPLd programs - with source code, and with the receiver being fully able to distribute it for free.

Re:RMS is starting to "get it"? :) (1)

SamAMac (864728) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231815)

Yes, but under the GPL, the person you sell to has the same rights you do. So they can just turn around and make it available for anyone to download for free. So unless you were planning to just sell to just one person, the GPL effectively prevents you from making money by selling your software.

Re:RMS is starting to "get it"? :) (3, Insightful)

dukerobillard (582741) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231610)

When I write a piece of open source code, that takes a bit of my time too and is sometimes boring. By RMS's logic, I should charge each user

Yes, that's what he's always said. He just doesn't whan people to sell him something and make it legally impossible for him to alter it, so it works better for him, and to give the altered version to a friend.

So, if you want to put a smiley face on his autograph and xerox a copy for your brother, I'm sure he'd be okay with that.

Re:RMS is starting to "get it"? :) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231830)

By RMS's logic, I should charge each user some sort of nuissance fee so that my time is better spent on more "productive pursuits" or somesuch.

Where in RMS's logic does he say that you can't charge for something? If you're going to mischaracterize someone's position at least be able to pass a cursory test by someone that knows a little about the subject.

Yes yes but... (1, Funny)

JoeyB (969202) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231573)

"Does RMS allow anyone to copy and modify those autographs?"

Of course! However you must use emacs and call it GNU/graph

I don't get it (5, Insightful)

vadim_t (324782) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231574)

So, somebody asks Stallman to sign their badge. Stallman realizes he could be stuck there for hours signing badges instead of doing something more useful. So he asks for a donation for the FSF (not even for himself!) to get something out of it, and hopefully reduce the size of the queue. Sounds completely reasonable to me.

It's not like Stallman ever had anything against charging money, from what I heard, he sold Emacs tapes.

Re:I don't get it (1)

YGingras (605709) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231657)

He've been doing it for some time. As soon as Free Software, Free Society hit the shelves you could order a signed copy [fsf.org] and in fact, I did. That way you support the FSF and you get something neet in return. Remember kids, members of the FSF get, among other things [fsf.org] , a 20% discount on all GNU Merchandise. That include the impressive GNU Age t-shirt [gnu.org] ! So waste no time and join the FSF as an Associate Member [fsf.org] so I can get my voice mail message by Richard Stallman [fsf.org] .

He has to make money somehow (1)

Pao|o (92817) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231578)

After everything's said and done he has bills as well you know!

Re:He has to make money somehow (1)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231596)

After everything's said and done he has bills as well you know!

Had you bothered to RTFA, you'd have known he was raising money for the FSF.

"Highly effective"? (2, Insightful)

Idaho (12907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231580)

Is this just for fun, or a clever, highly effective protest?

Anyone care to explain how this can possible be construed as to be highly effective?

Let's see, RMS does something very subtle that nobody in the mainstream press will bother to report, or actually even *notice*, not to mention *understand*. I fail to see how this can in any way, shape or form be seen as an "highly effective" protest.

Of course this is Slashdot, but even then....I mean come on ;)

Re:"Highly effective"? (1)

Otter (3800) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231643)

Hey, if it were one of the Google founders, it would be the most brilliantly innovative business strategy ever and we'd be reading a string of comments about how "I bet teh Steve Ballmer is throughing another chair!!!!"

As sucking up goes, "clever, highly effective protest" is pretty thin stuff.

Re:"Highly effective"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231671)

To decide whether it's highly effective as a protest, you'd first need to know what he was protesting against. The only thing I can think of would be a protest aganst people wasting his time by asking for autographs and photos. If that's the case then the mainstream press don't need to hear about it, only the people looking for autographs and photos.

If you have something else in mind that he could be protesting against then what is it?

You answered your question. (1)

twitter (104583) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231807)

RMS does something very subtle that nobody in the mainstream press will bother to report ... I fail to see how this can in any way, shape or form be seen as an "highly effective" protest. ... Of course this is Slashdot ...

Surprise, Slashdot is mainstream press. Slashdot is the 64th most visited site on the net [netcraft.com] . That's right behind the New York Times, which is 56th and more read than the Drudge Report, 75th. Only BBC, CNN, Google, Yahoo and MSNBC are more read news sources. Neither CBS nor ABC news make the top 100.

Re:You answered your question. (2, Insightful)

kaden (535652) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231833)

Yeah but people primarilly encounter CNN, BBC, MSNBC and the NY Times in a form that has little to do with their webpages. Do 50% of Americans know what Slashdot is? Do even 5%? Most Americans know what CNN is, most Americans even know what the BBC is. Slashdot isn't mainstream.

Autographs are only the start (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231584)

Autographs are only the beginning. I hear a Richard Stallman nude calendar is in the pipeline!

mod parent up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231604)

*rofl*

Re:Autographs are only the start (5, Funny)

level_headed_midwest (888889) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231625)

He threatens to display it at the next LinuxWorld conference unless a donation of $100,000 to the FSF is made.

Re:Autographs are only the start (3, Insightful)

mikeb (6025) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231645)

I for one would be fascinated to see the public response to a semi-nude calendar of OSS luminaries. When a bunch of middle-aged ladies did it here it made thousands for their organisation and a film got made of it ... mind you, it would take a strong stomach to tolerate seeing it pinned to the wall.

Tags (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231591)

scam megalomaniac

RMS is going commercial (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231605)

I guess the coorporate people finally got through to RMS and managed to invoke RMS' commercial interests. Now that he's learning about this 'money' thing I guess we all should start worrying. First he makes the GPL v3 "DRM friendly", now he's selling autographs. Before you know he'll turn the FSF into a big company licensing a lot of trademarks and business models and gain a revenue bigger than Microsoft!

Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (4, Insightful)

squarooticus (5092) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231609)

RMS isn't keeping the money for himself: he's trying to reduce demand by charging, and giving all the proceeds to the FSF.

What do you people all have against RMS? Remember that you use his software every day.

Re:Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (0, Flamebait)

Tx (96709) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231638)

Remember that you use his software every day.

Don't have to, he reminds us often enough ;)

Re:Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (0, Flamebait)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231683)

ARRG I hate comments like this.

There are thousands upon thousands of contributors to the OSS world. He may have been a significant figure at the debut but it's easy to see that many tools we take for granted [including the GCC toolset] are made usable by many others.

OSS exists today as more than a "emacs is good enough for anyone" attitude due to the contribution of many more people than RMS. If RMS had his way we'd all be in black and white X11 windows with emacs running in every xterm.

This may sound like player hater but look at the hundreds of packages in the average distro. Now look for his name in the authors list. How many packages have his name on them?

Now take all the packages without his name in it [including the Linux Kernel] and see how useful your distribution is.

Besides we know he does this because he can't hack it in the real world where he has to actually be productive and not just some press-whoring asshat with a beard.

Tom

Re:Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (2, Interesting)

A.K.A_Magnet (860822) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231776)

Without him, there would be no GPL (and maybe no "Free Software", who knows? There would be BSD but the concept and ideology behind Free Software may not exist -- BSD may be filed under "university science" ideology only). Linux wouldn't have been GPL'd. There wouldn't have been the GPL domino effect as we know it that made it possible for us to have these thousand packages (most of which are GPL'd and wouldn't be even Free Software if it weren't for the GPL). Without the full free stack and GPL, there would be no company investing in GNU/Linux (no IBM, etc). In fact, Linux would not be a famous kernel but maybe it would have remained a small project just for fun. And without Linux being what it is, there would be no "Open Source" movement (of which I'm no fan, but we must admit it created a hype around GNU/Linux and gave us [for the most part] tons of Free Software even running on different OS'es).

So Stallman may not have been the top contributor in terms of code, but he's I think more significant than many developpers (including some kernel developing trollmaster) in the F/OSS movement (even if he's not a part of the Open Source movement, there would be no such thing without him). Anyway, I wouldn't ask his autograph either :)

Re:Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (0, Troll)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231792)

Yeah, well God made RMS so therefore the whole OSS scene is due to God.

How far does this blatant hero worship go?

And you don't think someone else wouldn't have invented a GPL like license in due course?

Yes, he should get credit for doing something nobody else did, that is, kick start the whole OSS scene. He was a significant contributor both in ideals and code. But that was also a VERY LONG TIME AGO.

He's as much a part of most OSS tools today as Alan Turing is.

Tom

Re:Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (1)

A.K.A_Magnet (860822) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231837)

Wrong argument. I'm saying here there would be something like Free Software (but we can't be sure) OR Open Source Movement. At least some "free spirit" around code like with BSD. However, the GPL itself is a clever idea that came from Stallman (with the help of Eblen Moglen) and NO, I don't think it would exist now otherwise. It's clever and cocky, the whole contrary of our modern ideas. And I say the GPL is the tool we needed to make the Free Software movement wider. It's an extraordinary appeal to developers who wish to make their code free but fear to feel spoiled when finding their code in proprietary products later (without royalties).

Furthermore, RMS has always defended *ideals*. I'm not worshipping him as a hero, I just respect him for what he's done.

Re:Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (1)

wrygrin (128912) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231896)

your attitude dismisses as hero worship the opinion of a bunch of people - me, included - that rms made a difference without which there may not be free/open source software. we may be right or we may be wrong, but the way you frame it doesn't even entertain the notion, it just belittles the value we see in his contributions. that's ok with me - you're entitled to see or not see what you wish - *except* that it's the kind of noise that can interfere with others seeing the importance, and potentially reducing the effectiveness of the movement - a movement most of you want to see succeed.

Re:Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (1)

Cal Paterson (881180) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231808)

This is entirely ignorant. If RMS had his way we'd all be in black and white X11 windows with emacs running in every xterm.
What the hell are you talking about? It was him that pioneered many of the ideas that people should be able to fork their software.

This may sound like player hater but look at the hundreds of packages in the average distro. Now look for his name in the authors list. How many packages have his name on them?
How many packages are compiled with gcc or any other part of the GNU toolchain? How many packages use the GPL/LGPL? How many web resources use the GFDL? How many distributions use the GPL for all original content and license as much as possible under the GPL? His contribution, both politically, and technically has been significant.

Besides we know he does this because he can't hack it in the real world where he has to actually be productive and not just some press-whoring asshat with a beard.
Good to see you let a little ad hominem attacks slip through, troll.

Re:Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231828)

Oh give me a break. He may have started GCC but it was the contributors that actually made it worth while.

Recall the back in the day commercial vendors used watcom on x86, and the proprietary CC on others. Look at all the changes in the 2.x, 3.x and the new 4.x series. How many have his name on them? 2.x has been out for a VERY LONG TIME.

Saying that the OSS scene is just because of RMS is slap in the face to the thousands of people who donate thousands of hours of their lives to make scene better.

Tom

Re:Hatchet piece - RTFA next time, stupid editors (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231743)


I run a linux box as a web server. I don't think there is a single package that he wrote which I use on that box.

wasn't it a kde guy who was charging? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231612)

wasn't it kde dev aaron seigo who was charging for people to take photos with stallman?

Of course (1)

mpupu (750408) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231613)

Stallman autographs are clearly free as in speech, not as in beer.

Re:Of course (1)

chiao (925954) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231704)

You mean people are free to copy the signatures?

What's the big deal? (5, Insightful)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231617)

My March 1987 copy of the GNU Emacs Manual (Sixth Edition, Version 18) has a FSF order form in the back. The source code is avilable on tape for $150. The Gnu C Compiler on tape for $150. Gnu Emacs manuals for $15 each.

Why is there an 'outcry' about Stallman and his organization making some money to support their efforts? It's how movements based on ideals, not keeping 'the bottom line' number big, sustain their organizations and themselves.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

setantae (103317) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231647)

Tapes and printed manuals actually cost money, don't forget.

Re:What's the big deal? (0, Redundant)

nsayer (86181) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231694)

What kind of tape?

This is a little past 1987, but I remember QIC-20 tapes back in the day were pretty pricey - one would be a substantial fraction of the $150 quoted. I don't think, however, that a reel of 9 track (particularly one of the small reels) was that much. It was a pretty mature technology by that point and there isn't much to it apart from the reel and tape.

Of course, that doesn't mean that RMS still isn't a tool for selling autographs. He could be forgiven if all of the money was going to be donated back to the FSF, but unless TFA says so (I didn't bother to look), it probably means he's going to pocket it.

I guess communism doesn't pay well enough. :)

Re:What's the big deal? (0, Flamebait)

fatphil (181876) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231781)

Do us a favour -- either get a clue and RTFA, or don't spout crap. Preferably both.

It's obvious (4, Funny)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231621)

He's buying Microsoft.

-- Dvorak

what a dick (-1, Troll)

cliffski (65094) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231646)

what a dick

Great ! (1)

lord_rob the only on (859100) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231674)

Isn't an autograph something you are proud to get from a celebrity ? Who in hell knows Richard Stallman except geeks at slashdot ? I'll sure get a troll mod for that but at least admit it's true.

You need to sell (1, Insightful)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231682)

Some people produce products and sell them. They are ok.

Some other people produce products but give them out for free. They believe that is fair and money will naturally come from some place. Years pass, money don't come. So naturally, the people in question gotta rework their model so they can put food on the table. They will try to sell T-shirts, logos, tea cups and even branded underwear, but won't sell their products.

Years pass, some of those people are still living in their mom's basements (pardon the cliche) working on their pet projects, while some other ones move on with their lives and sign up to work in a real company. They succeeded with never sold their products, they instead abandoned them and became yet another drone in the enterprise industry.

Not everyone is Richard Stallman and can afford to fund his favorite organisations by selling autographs, but apparrently in the end even Richard Stallman has to sell something, there's no free lunch.

And don't put me that crap about reducing demand. It's embarassing to sell your signatures especially given your status, and especially given that you can't really make a change with those money (100 bucks a month?). You can instead say "I'm sorry I'm really busy, glad we met" and continue on your way. Was that so much harder? I guess it's easier to sell your dignity.

The guy is a nutcase (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231686)

Seriously does anyone actually pay attention to what RMS does these days? He's an embarrassment to the open source movement with his childish media stunts and unkempt appearance.

Well I guess some goofballs can be entertaining but RMS just goes too far!

To pay for media and distribution costs, only... (1)

0x0000 (140863) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231703)

... there was no cost as long as you downloaded the autograph onto your own media? Was he also charging for copies of his public key?

R.M.S.? Two out of three ain't bad. (1)

volatilises (945044) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231731)

root mean square

This just goes to show... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231733)

...that free and open-source celebrity is not a sustainable business model.

He has done this before too! (2, Informative)

Harish Mallipeddi (867044) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231753)

The last time he was in Singapore he charged S$10 for his autograph from everyone. Ironically though he didn't charge anything for taking a photograph with him. You know which option I opted for :)

What is wrong in it ? (4, Insightful)

ravee (201020) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231790)

If I am a celebrity and if there is a demand for my autograph, I might also choose to charge for it. It has atleast two advantages.

One: It reduces the crowd as only those who are serious about getting the autograph will pay up. The others who get autographs just for kicks will stay away.

Two: It helps the cause a little bit. Especially if it is a person of the likes of Stallman who is associated with a not-for-profit movement.

Any way, charging $5 for an autograph or $2 for a photograph is much better than charging hundreds of dollars for a piece of software.

Internacional? (-1, Troll)

minus_273 (174041) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231836)

Internacional? jeez it's not spelled the way it sounds. Hello, spell check.

Exactly! (1)

Joris Van Damme (971894) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231851)

As the president of the Free Autographs and T-shirts Foundation, I much object to this practice. Authographs, like T-shirts, want to be free! We ought to freely hand them out to anyone interested. To cover the costs of this operation, and feed the unfortunate mouths that depend on our activities, I propose we sell a little software on the side...

Okay, nice, except ... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15231852)

Bill Gates now has an easy way to get RMS out of the way ... just let him make 10M autographs. That'll keep him busy for a while :-)

Sellout? (5, Insightful)

linvir (970218) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231854)

You people tagging him as a sellout are dumbasses. He doesn't have a regular steady income. He lives off shit like this. Fees for appearing at events and the like are what he uses to his buy pizza and mountain dew.

Is this a new part of the OSS business model? (1)

omission9 (178213) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231866)

Software Hippy[old position]:You can make money selling support, documentation, and customization!
Software Hippy[new position]: Ok, I admit anybody can find the documentation and support they need via Google or customize on their own. Now everybody can make money selling autographs and giving keynote speeches!

donations work (1)

icepick72 (834363) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231871)

Therefore I said I would sign it in exchange for a contribution of 10 reais (5 dollars) for the Free Software Foundation. Likewise, I realized that hundreds or thousands might ask me to pose with them for photographs. So I decided to ask 5 reais for this, about $2.50, also for the Free Software Foundation.

If it's an official donation to the FSF, the foundation should also provide the option of official tax receipts to those who donate, unless there is a lower limit imposed; for example: no tax receipts for donations under $10. So they were anonymous donations. I have no doubt the money will go to FSF. FSF should publish the amount raised for interest sake (if not for us to calculate how many autographs he actually signed!)
There's nothing that goes against freedom here that I can see. It's a standard donation model being used.

RTFA? (1)

kronocide (209440) | more than 8 years ago | (#15231892)

The fee was a contribution to the FSF of course.

"By charging for autographs and for poses, I raised a few hundred dollars for the FSF and FSF Latin America..."
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