HYDERABAD: "All software should be free and provide freedom to users," says Richard Mathew Stallman, the brain behind the free operating system GNU (GNU's Not Unix). Speaking at an event organised by Swecha, a nonprofit body fighting for freedom of software in collaboration with Free Software Movement of India on Wednesday, the father of the free software movement said he would continue to fight for freedom to online users. Later speaking to Express he said, "I condemn the policies of governments trying to censor online content." Terming the Government of India's proposal to spend Rs900 crore on online surveillance as unjust, he said the most dangerous terrorists are either governmentsponsored or letoff by them. When asked about cyber terrorism, he said, "There is no such concept as cyberterrorism. A democratic setup allows you to openly comment or abuse anything you feel about."
According to Stallman, devices which run proprietary software like Windows or the Apple OS are malicious. "These devices come with surveillance features and universal backdoors which lets the developer control your personal computers from remote servers, even without asking the user's permission. That is why I don't carry a cell phone."
Stallman also called for use of free software in all educational activities. "In educational activities, these software could be easily redistributed to different users without any added cost and make young children independent of closed software from the beginning," he says. He believes writing a free programme is his real contribution to the society. But he also had a solution to proprietary software just don't use them.