[Fsf-friends] Re: GNU Freedom

Ramanraj K ramanraj@vsnl.com
Sun Sep 7 05:11:14 IST 2003

    The figures sound (are meant to sound?) sensational.
    Could we suggest that these guys try marking Free Software
    instead?     FN

The GNU GPL grants a means of livelihood, that could well be seen as a
right  flowing  from  the  GPL.   All software  "pirates"  could  turn
respectable by distributing GNU/Linux  software and live with dignity.
The lottery  agents in Parrys Corner,  Chennai, used to  scream in the
streets,  "Saar, 10  rupees lottery.   3.00 PM  draw.  You  can become
crorepathi!"   Recently,  the   Government  of  Tamil  Nadu  abolished
lotteries and all the lottery agents suddenly went without employment,
after the High  Court confirmed the state action.   Now the agents are
selling watches:  "Saar, 60  rupees worth watch  for only  20 rupees".
Could any cost-accountant in the list prepare an estimate of the worth
of  all free software  available?  Though  free software  is priceless
[pun unintended] I modestly estimate the value of all free software to
be Rs.  One Hundred Crore per *distribution*. [Rs. 100,000,000,000/-].
Our road  side distributors  could then say  "Saar, several  crores of
rupees  worth software for  only fifty  rupees!".  Better  versions of
free software are released almost  every month, and this is guaranteed
to be a perpetual business like the FMG segment.

Gandhi asked  our people  to take to  weaving Kadhi and  other cottage
industries to make a living, and be self reliant.  Because of the GPL,
free software  CDs could be a  source of income to  many.  The lottery
agent is an example of the  freedom of livelihood at the lowest level.
At the  other higher levels,  we are already having  corporations, and
others doing brisk business, fully  aware of the bright future of free

The GPL is clearly ahead of  our constitution here, in making right to
livelihood a reality.

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