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GNU Guru: Linux Steam "Unethical"

The GNU Website has statement from Richard Stallman where the founder of GNU and the Free Software Foundation describes his concerns about Valve's plans to bring Steam to Linux (thanks Ars Technica). He explains the freedom to install Steam games will impinge on a user's freedom:

A well known company, Valve, that distributes nonfree computer games with Digital Restrictions Management, recently announced it would distribute these games for GNU/Linux. What good and bad effects can this have?

I suppose that availability of popular nonfree programs on GNU/Linux can boost adoption of the system. However, our goal goes beyond making this system a “success”; its purpose is to bring freedom to the users. Thus, the question is how this development affects users' freedom.

Nonfree game programs (like other nonfree programs) are unethical because they deny freedom to their users. (Game art is a different issue, because it isn't software.) If you want freedom, one requisite for it is not having nonfree programs on your computer. That much is clear.

However, if you're going to use these games, you're better off using them on GNU/Linux rather than on Microsoft Windows. At least you avoid the harm to your freedom that Windows would do.

Thus, in direct practical terms, this development can do both harm and good. It might encourage GNU/Linux users to install these games, and it might encourage users of the games to replace Windows with GNU/Linux. My guess is that the direct good effect will be bigger than the direct harm. But there is also an indirect effect: what does the use of these games teach people in our community?

Any GNU/Linux distro that comes with software to offer these games will teach users that the point is not freedom. Nonfree software in GNU/Linux distros already works against the goal of freedom. Adding these games to a distro would augment that effect.

If you want to promote freedom, please take care not to talk about the availability of these games on GNU/Linux as support for our cause. Instead you could tell people about the Liberated Pixel Cup free game contest, the Free Game Dev Forum, and the LibrePlanet Gaming Collective's free gaming night.

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66. Re: GNU Guru: Linux Steam Jul 31, 2012, 19:51 Cutter
 
Closed Betas wrote on Jul 31, 2012, 19:19:
Closed Betas wrote on Jul 31, 2012, 19:16:
This guy needs more processing power, buying a game for Linux does not harm Microsoft, in most cases the software is multi-platform supported.

The only one getting fucked is IBM, as the PC is a IBM platform, but only a compatible?

What is happening to the country is called Communism.. That is the harm being done having licensed platforms.. Its spreading into all businesses, look around, all parts companies are now having SOLE distributorships, and more, to drive up cost and kill the smaller competition.


And I know a lot of you don't always catch the intelligence in my posts but think of it this way..

Why is there NOT Playstation compatibles.
Why is there NOT Xbox compatibles...
Back in the day there was Atari, and guess what
Tele-systems was Sears product, was a compatible Atari system.
and not Atari, but you no longer see this...

Communism, because no one has the intelligence or care to survive, only control

Clearly you need to learn a thing or two about political ideologies. See, if it was communism there would be no corporations in the first place, just goods and services produced by the comrades of the state. There would be no attempt creating virtual monopolies or closed-systems. All those things you mentioned would be entirely compatible under a communist style system.

In a "free-market" system we have corporations. Those corporations are all intent on creating monopolies where possible because that means they get everyone's money for the monopoly they've created. No, America is actually moving more toward an oligarchic and/or plutocratic system where the wealth and power is concentrated by a small group of people - the 1%. This is why you a reduction or outright elimination of competitors and compatible good goods and services.
 
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