Mastodon, or: Can Nazi use Free as in Freedom Software?
Short answer: yes, they can. Regardless of what some websites are saying.
Mastodon is “an alternative to Twitter”. Mashable just wrote that:
- “Mastodon.. in many ways it’s like Twitter, but it is also so not like Twitter… What makes it stand out? It has better privacy controls than Twitter. Also, neo-Nazis are explicitly banned.”
- and then, 2 lines below: “Mastodon is a type of free and open source software (FOSS) known as “GNU social.”
No, sorry. Software of that kind cannot “explicitly ban Nazis”. Or anybody else, for that matter. Free as in Freedom software means “software that everybody can use in whatever way they want” (of course in compliance with applicable laws). Including being Nazi. Here is nobody less than Richard Stallman saying it.
The truth is different, and well explained in this thread:
“Mastodon the software is not politically aligned. mastodon.social the flagship instance of the developer (me) that simply runs/demonstrates the latest code, is, in this case, leaning left. You can run your own.”
I myself usually explain the same concepts pointing out that one can build the perfect police state with “Free as in Freedom” software. So, don’t go saying, or expecting, that Free as in Freedom, open software cannot be used by Nazis.
Of course it can. And that’s a good thing. It’s what Freedom is all about. Paragraphing Stallman, see above, “We need to stop [x], but we can’t do it through software licenses”.
PS: if you’re interested in “alternatives to Twitter” please let me know what you think of the Percloud.
Commenting system (still under test!!!)
You may also:
- Follow my courses on Free Software, Digital Rights and more
- Read my free ebooks and other publications
- Support this and my other works
- Calicut: How and Why Open Hardware and Open Source can and should be used in non-western countries
- La Comunificadora is back with some new, challenging projects
- About Marco
- EU and China must help the world to do the RIGHT thing
- Don't break up Big Tech? Of course
- Palm Oil Factoids of 2019, and its next battle
- NextCloud 16 review
- Geopolitical take-away of the week, from UK, Italy and China
- Four ways to take DNS services in your hand and WHY do it
- Save forests, not tigers or wolves
- What if that shooting guy had been a Thru...