RMS was right since the very beginning. Every warning, every prophecy realised. And, worst of all, he had the solution since the start.
The solution has always been there: copyleft. Copyleft as in "Forbidding privatizing the commons". Here's why:
He also foresaw that if we were not the master of our software, we would quickly become the slave of the machines controlled by soulless corporations. He told us that story again and again.
RMS quickly pointed, rightly, that the lack of "freedom" means that people will forget about the concept. Again, he was right. But everybody considered that "Free Software" and "Open Source" were the same because they both focused on the four freedoms.
Pushing GPL and AGPL was not enough, because
all this work was ridiculed. Microsoft, through Github, Google and Apple pushed for MIT/BSD licensed software as the open source standard. This allowed them to use open source components within their proprietary closed products. They managed to make thousands of free software developers work freely for them.
We need more commons, because:
- young student are taught computer with Word and PowerPoint
- young hackers are mostly happy with rooting Android phones or using the API of a trendy JS framework.
- When an industry receives millions in public subsidies then make a patent, that industry is privatising the common.
- When Google is putting the Linux kernel in a phone that cannot be modified easily, Google is privatising the common.
Well, the first little step I can do myself is to release every future software I develop under the AGPL license. To put my blog under a CC By-SA license. I encourage you to copyleft all the things!
Add a fifth rule to the free software: The obligation to keep those four rights, effectively keeping the software in the commons.