Software freedom is the freedom to run, share, and modify computer programs. When you have these freedoms, you are free to make your computer do what you want it to do instead of being restricted to whatever the programmers want your computer to do. Free software respects a user’s freedom to learn and participate in an egalitarian society. Free software is the opposite of proprietary software— software which restricts your inspection, copying, and modification.
Having this freedom is not about skill; having freedom of speech doesn’t make anyone a great writer. Freedom means permission to take control over your computer by using software that is free to be shared and improved as you wish. Software freedom is a necessary component for people to live as equals in society.
Today we celebrate software freedom by encouraging all computer users to install and run more free software on their computers so they too can be free. Since 1983 the free software movement has made a conscious political and ethical choice to pursue software freedom for themselves and all other computer users by writing and using computer software that is licensed to share and modify.
- More about software freedom
- Free Software Foundation—the home of the free software movement