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Why ESR is Wrong to Advocate Compromise

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I once heard a story about a Colorado miner who, despite his hard work, couldn't find gold. He eventually came to the conclusion that the search was futile and he gave up and sold the mine. The new owner took possession and proceeded to dig and lo and behold, he found gold three feet from where the previous owner had stopped digging. The new owner, needless to say, became a millionaire. No doubt that it's one of these apocryphal inspirational stories that's designed to show the value of some virtue. In this case, it's perseverance.

After reading the latest statements from Open Source luminary Eric S. Raymond, I'm tempted to compare him with the first owner of the gold mine.

When the Linux landscape was a wilderness, ERS was preaching, along with Bruce Perens and Jon 'maddog' Hall, the virtues of pragmatism. He was the most vocal evangelist. Now he advocates pragmatism and compromise with respect to our dealings with the owners of proprietary multimedia codecs.

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