I don’t want my software to kill people

Open source licenses fall short of modern needs.

Ben Werdmuller

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Dave Winer poses:

If you think of yourself as an “open source developer” please ask yourself this question. Are you as committed to freedom for people who use your software as you are to freedom for developers? Not just freedom to modify the source code, but freedom to do anything they like with the stuff they create. If not, why, and where do you draw the line?

I’m not sure if I do consider myself an open source developer these days. I don’t have the time or bandwidth to write software for myself on a regular basis in the way that I used to. I have the software I help with in my work (which is, these days, more about team dynamics and process rather than writing code); that’s about all I have time for outside of my family. I am having a lot of trouble making any time at all for my own projects.

But I used to write a lot of open source code (Elgg, Known, more contributions elsewhere). And I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this subject.

I think we have to consider that the principles of the free software movement, revolutionary though they genuinely were, were also set in the same mindset that latterly saw its founder Richard Stallman spectacularly fall from grace. They are principles that…

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Ben Werdmuller

Writer: of code, fiction, and strategy. Trying to work for social good.