Does Open Source Matter?
I think that the reality is that for 99 percent of the people who buy and use products, it doesn’t. If you can’t read code, why would you care if you can? There is this central message of “freedom,” but it doesn’t really apply to a freedom that the average person identifies with. For instance, you are free to flap your arms and fly to the moon too, but if you can’t do it, so what?
Now there is the DRM message and one of the areas where I agree with FSF is that DRM is wrong. But, from my perspective, it’s also stupid, because DRM treats the people who actually legally buy products as if they are criminals and rewards the pirates. I can point to no other product where an industry actually works to make stolen goods more valuable than if they are legally purchased. And then they go after kids they have incented to pirate. I can’t even create a good metaphor, because every possibility that comes to mind also sounds incredibly stupid.
But anti-DRM isn’t really the same as open source.