Supporto per una Società Libera

There is much more to software than being trustworthy (being "Open-Source"): what really counts is the freedoms you get over it. Can you learn from it? Can you build upon it? Can you distribute it? That's what we refer to as "free software".

Invento nuove parole, frasi, analogie, e battute comiche in inglese e della gente fa una parafrasi di quello che volevo dire e ci fa dei soldi, parlando di alcune delle cose di cui ho parlato.

If I try to lock down what I talk about and write about, the same way as a proprietary software company does, then the whole industry of speaking, writing, media, would be overly litigious, and transaction costs would be prohibitive.

Don Marti, Interviste del 2005

Non è un concetto da pazzi

Sembra strano a molti utenti che il software dovrebbe essere libero, dal momento che nessuno dei prodotti Microsoft lo è. Eppure la nostra società funziona con molte cose libere in essa, ad esempio:

  • Nessuno chef vieterebbe mai la modifica di una sua ricetta e di farne opere derivate. L'industria alimentare prospera nonostante sia previsto dalla legge l'elenco degli ingredienti sulle etichette dei prodotti.
  • A fair law court system permits anyone to read through all the trial hearings and arguments. Not only the result (the final deliberations), but also the process is fully open.

Il software libero è libero sia come la "libertà di parola", che come nel "libero mercato": sono entrambi necessari ad una società libera. Dubbiosi? Osserviamo il software proprietario un po' più da vicino.

Software proprietario che va storto

The limits of proprietary software go beyond the security issue (see our article on source code): today proprietary software interferes with the spread of culture and information. This happens mainly through two technologies:

Gestione dei diritti digitali 1 (DRM)

The main idea of DRM 1 is to restrict access to files. Users encounter this when, for example, they purchase music through iTunes, and then can only play their music with one player, from one brand. With this method, companies fight copyright infringement, but they also severely restrain users' access to their files.

Il DRm è un controllo sui contenuti

Except that the control is not in the hands of the end-user. The original purpose of DRM is understandable, but the implications over the flow of information and culture within a society are frightening.

  • Immagina un libro che, dopo essere stato letto una volta, non si può più aprire.
  • Immagina dei documenti che si auto-distruggono quando provi a portarli fuori dalla stanza.
  • Immagina telefoni che lavorano solo se chi sta telefonando abbia la stessa marca e modello.

Ti sembra una pazzia? È proprio qui che il Trusted Computing entra in gioco.

Trusted Computing (TC)

Trusted Computing (sometimes more accurately called "Treacherous Computing") means a computer can only run "Trusted" Software. It is meant to be an uncircumventable protection against nuisances (like viruses or spyware) and copyright violations (people copying proprietary software).

Il trusted computing è una forma di controllo sul computer

The critical thing about Trusted Computing is that you cannot decide what is trustworthy and what is not. For example, your computer might refuse to run programs that are not certified by the software company –programs that could enable you to take documents out of the office, or play your neighbour's DVD, or send your essay to someone not using the same program.

A whole range of possibilities opens up for companies that benefit from restricting your computing (such as proprietary software and recording companies). It is suddenly possible to rent DVDs that only play two times, or music you can only listen to during September, or information you can read but can't save or copy. All of a sudden, Trusted Computing and DRM enable remote control over content.

Il Trusted Computing, in effetti, consente alla casa editrice di scrivere le proprie leggi sul copyright.

L'impatto più ampio

Many cultural products are now emerging "triple protected", not only by copyright and code, but also by contracts or licenses for which users waive all remaining rights.

Increasingly, copyright is replaced with click-through end-user licenses for digital content, using contract law to establish the absolute property rights that copyright laws were originally intended to deny to publishers.

Rosemary Bechler, Unbounded Freedom

Computing is not just about calculations anymore. We use software to communicate: to share information, ideas and culture. Software is in our phones, cars, media players, TVs, and gets to govern just about every new device around us.

Software is increasingly used to enforce rules. Rules that may or may not be the law. Rules that may or may not be fair. If the software is not free there will be no space for the user to influence these rules.

Trusted Computing and DRM pave the way for a society in which culture and information are not simply turned into products (they are right now, and that is fine), but into consumable products.

Code is power. Most of today's work documents are written and encoded with secret algorithms in proprietary software. What will be of tomorrow's books, photos, films, essays, animations, music, news? Proprietary programs such as Windows have no transparency. A free culture and a free society cannot grow from such software.

May we suggest you switch to GNU/Linux?

  1. ^ Note that DRM is often referred to as "Digital Rights Management", although it has little to do with rights – "Digital Restrictions Management" is a more accurate name.

Leggi altro

Il diritto di Leggere

What is the Trusted Computing world like? This is a short story by Richard Stallman that describes how this can affect any of us.

L'inganno del DRM

La GNU General Public License, sotto la quale sono pubblicati GNU/linux ed una grande quantità di software liberi.

La conoscenza libera richiede software libero e formati dei file liberi.

An engaged article by Jimmy Wales, who co-founded the free encyclopedia Wikipedia.

Trusted Computing

Una breve animazione video di Benjamin Stephan e Lutz Vogel. Una chiara, pungente e convincente argomentazione.

Perchè il software non dovrebbe avere padroni

A pivotal text for the Free Software movement by Richard Stallman. It clarifies common objections and explains a handful of important ideas.

Come fraintendere il software libero

Altro circa il software libero su questo sito.