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What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Thu May 02, 2019 6:41 pm
by DJF113
Just curious about everyone's thoughts about this. I sometimes have people comment on my use of Linux when I'm in a group. I always feel I can never explain the reasons I prefer to use open source without becoming preachy or boring. The same thing when someone suggests an app that's linked to Google. It seems a lot of folks don't understand the open source choice, and I don't want to push them away by giving them the wrong impression when they ask.

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Thu May 02, 2019 8:15 pm
by absque fenestris
DJF113 wrote:
Thu May 02, 2019 6:41 pm
Just curious about everyone's thoughts about this. I sometimes have people comment on my use of Linux when I'm in a group. I always feel I can never explain the reasons I prefer to use open source without becoming preachy or boring. The same thing when someone suggests an app that's linked to Google. It seems a lot of folks don't understand the open source choice, and I don't want to push them away by giving them the wrong impression when they ask.
Hello DFJ113
if people are simply ignorant and basically not willing to learn - and reading seems to be frowned upon - all efforts are probably in vain.
For the few who are interested there are two abbreviations: RMS & GNU.

https://stallman.org
https://www.gnu.org

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Thu May 02, 2019 9:58 pm
by Portreve
absque fenestris wrote:
Thu May 02, 2019 8:15 pm
DJF113 wrote:
Thu May 02, 2019 6:41 pm
Just curious about everyone's thoughts about this. I sometimes have people comment on my use of Linux when I'm in a group. I always feel I can never explain the reasons I prefer to use open source without becoming preachy or boring. The same thing when someone suggests an app that's linked to Google. It seems a lot of folks don't understand the open source choice, and I don't want to push them away by giving them the wrong impression when they ask.
Hello DFJ113
if people are simply ignorant and basically not willing to learn - and reading seems to be frowned upon - all efforts are probably in vain.
For the few who are interested there are two abbreviations: RMS & GNU.

https://stallman.org
https://www.gnu.org
Seconded.

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Thu May 02, 2019 10:13 pm
by absque fenestris
@ Portreve: Thank you

This is my method: I occasionally do support for friends, relatives and customers - of course everyone on the road with Mac or Windows - Well, I install Virtualbox and in VB a nice little Mint Mate.
And besides that I install LibreOffice, GIMP and SumatraPDF* in their worldwide recognized and popular operating systems.
As a supporter I can do that and because I can, I do it.
Applied practice.

* Windows only

Success? ...mixed, the reasons are listed above.

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Thu May 02, 2019 10:28 pm
by Pierre
it's always an mixed success - - almost everyone is aware that I'm some sort of 'Computer Guru':
- although that Title, also comes with mixed blessings, too.
and they also know that I'm an 'Linux Nutter' - as well.
:lol:
then I'll hit 'em with all of many reasons - - and there is a few of them, as well.
:mrgreen:

that ever present Australia Tax
- will always get an mention.

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Thu May 02, 2019 11:18 pm
by absque fenestris
Pierre wrote:
Thu May 02, 2019 10:28 pm
...
that ever present Australia Tax
- will always get an mention.
Ahem - I also know a certain little country: Which guess?

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Fri May 03, 2019 2:47 am
by kyphi
To offer advice regarding the question asked, be patient, don't overwhelm and be prepared to demonstrate. You know that you are on a winner and you do not have to prove it to anyone.

"Regarding Australian Tax, open an account on MyGov and you can do your tax: https://my.gov.au/LoginServices/main/lo ... ution=e1s1. No problem."

Erratum: Yes, I misunderstood and confused Australia Tax with Australian Tax :oops:

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Fri May 03, 2019 3:21 am
by absque fenestris
@ kyphi

Sorry about that,
but I think, as a citizen of the small country, I have already correctly interpreted Pierre's allusion as more rhetorical than literal.
It has less to do with official taxes than with the purses of certain ladies and gentlemen...
...and taxes, taxes, taxes - is there a better excuse? After all, we in the country in question are allowed to settle our taxes on the Mac!

That's real progress. :mrgreen:

Why FOSS of course is not so popular at all: Assuming I would want to buy Windows 10, it costs me exactly CHF 159.-- (...and that in the stupid version) of this, 7.5% goes to the tax administration anyway...
From a current GNU/Linux Mint Cinnamon or so the state earns how much?

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Fri May 03, 2019 4:31 am
by gm10
DJF113 wrote:
Thu May 02, 2019 6:41 pm
It seems a lot of folks don't understand the open source choice, and I don't want to push them away by giving them the wrong impression when they ask.
Most people, myself included, use software because it meets their needs, not because of ideology. If you start with the Stallman crazy you'll just drive them away. Most people, myself not included, also couldn't care less about open source because they cannot read and certainly not write code, anyway. It's only the free of cost aspect in the acronym that's remotely interesting to them.

So show them how they can do what they want to do on Linux (if they can) and maybe they'll consider it. Just don't get preachy. Windows is a fine operating system as well and there are many legitimate reasons why people use it (because, again, they do not care about the open source part).

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Fri May 03, 2019 5:29 am
by absque fenestris
You don't have to like Stallman, but there are certain questions that are not easy to resolve.

Example eBooks and music files: if Amazon deletes Orwell's 1984 from my virtual bookshelf - of all things - or if I have certain problems managing paid music files - certain questions arise.
They're not religious, they're economic: Which product belongs to me and which doesn't? Which operating system and which program may interfere with my databases?
Basically, I can do whatever I want with any purchased tool, book or vinyl record as hardware.

Since original and copy are no longer distinguishable - and much is only available virtually, Richard Stallman, among others, has already asked a few essential questions.

I'm still inevitably a Mac user and work with the usual suspects. Only - I used to get floppies, CD's and DVD's for money. And the supplier didn't give a shit on which hard disk I installed the thing.
Today, 2019, install your purchased programs after a hardware defect on a new hard disk and discuss it with Mac and Adobe people.

If not before, at least now you will find FOSS pretty good... :mrgreen:

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Fri May 03, 2019 8:19 am
by Hoser Rob
absque fenestris wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 5:29 am
You don't have to like Stallman, but there are certain questions that are not easy to resolve....
No kidding. For another example, the HTML5 standard now has DRM embedded in it. So you cannot have a truly FOSS browser that the vast majority of users will find useful.

Personally I think Stallman is a bit of a moron. "Information wants to be free"??? Idiocy. It doesn;t want anything.

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Fri May 03, 2019 8:38 am
by gm10
Hoser Rob wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 8:19 am
Personally I think Stallman is a bit of a moron. "Information wants to be free"??? Idiocy. It doesn;t want anything.
He's a bit of a nut job, but certainly not a moron. Remember you're using an operating system that's published under his license and built upon his project (GNU).

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Fri May 03, 2019 12:47 pm
by DJF113
Thanks for the replies everyone.
gm10 wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 4:31 am
Most people, myself included, use software because it meets their needs, not because of ideology.
I've enjoyed using open source software for a while, first because it was free, then later on because of the community aspect, so I try to introduce people to it that way. Although you still have the people that think you wear a tin foil hat if you remove as many traces of Google as possible from your phone! :mrgreen:
gm10 wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 4:31 am
Windows is a fine operating system as well
Definitely agree, I still use 10 for some games that don't work the best on Mint. The tracking and unskippable updates are annoying me more and more though!
kyphi wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 2:47 am
To offer advice regarding the question asked, be patient, don't overwhelm and be prepared to demonstrate. You know that you are on a winner and you do not have to prove it to anyone.
I do have some friends that have started using some open source software, like LibreOffice and VLC, because they've seen how it just works for me.
Pierre wrote:
Thu May 02, 2019 10:28 pm
it's always an mixed success - - almost everyone is aware that I'm some sort of 'Computer Guru':
- although that Title, also comes with mixed blessings, too.
That "Computer Guru" title can mean a lot of calls to come and fix their computer! :D Personal experience there!

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Fri May 03, 2019 1:07 pm
by gm10
DJF113 wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 12:47 pm
if you remove as many traces of Google as possible from your phone!
Other than the operating system you mean? :mrgreen:

Re: What is the best way to talk to people about FOSS?

Posted: Fri May 03, 2019 1:16 pm
by DJF113
Exactly! I get hardly any cell service in my area, and I can't buy an Ubuntu Touch compatible phone that gets service. Also, there are very few rootable phones that work here either, so I'm somewhat stuck!