Thursday, July 03, 2003

I made a nice little retort on slashdot to the "Information wants to be free" argument that seems to justify everything. Unfortunately, I was in anonymous mode.

Anyway, was the retort:

Buyers want all goods to be free. Sellers want all goods to have a high price. The goods themselves really don't "want" anything. Inanimate objects really don't have complex desires and social lives like the gurus pretend they do.

Saying a car "wants" to go fast or information "wants" to be free is just an anthtropomorphism. It is you, as a buyer, assigning your emotions on to an object.

Although OSS appears to be a matter of discussing ideals, from a market perspective it is still about exchanging goods. When work hard to create something of value, you don't want to give it away. Also, there is a drive of artisans to create, trade and reinvest.

This new idea that all intellectual creations must be given to the public with no benefit to the creator is simply a one sided argument. The great statements like "information wants to be free" is rather meaningless.

Basically, the buyer is stating that information is extremely easy to steal, borrow, or what ever.

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