Eric Raymond is back and has written, with his very recognizable style, that he dislikes what Microsoft is doing to get OOXML approved by the International Standards Organization. Good old ESR is so disgusted by the maneuvers to destroy ISO’s credibility only to maintain Microsoft’s monopoly on Office that he is willing to change his mind about Open Source Initiative’s position:
OSI will treat any licenses submitted to Microsoft strictly on their merits, without fear or favor. That remains OSI’s position. But…
Yes, there is a but, he says:
Despite my previous determination, I find I’m almost ready to recommend
that OSI tell Microsoft to ram its licenses up one of its own orifices,
even if they are technically OSD compliant. Because what good is it to
conform to the letter of OSD if you’re raping its spirit?
I agree with ESR: who cares if some of Microsoft’s license technically grant four freedoms (or 9 principles). The problem is that Microsoft is not being a good member of the digital society, it’s still acting as a bully in the school backyard.
Now I wish Eric recognized that what he said means that OSI is about moral principles as much as FSFs are and there is nothing to be ashamed for this.