Boston, MA—December 15, 2006—The Free Software Foundation (FSF) today launched BadVista.org, a campaign with a twofold mission of exposing the harms inflicted on computer users by the new Microsoft Windows Vista and promoting free software alternatives that respect users' security and privacy rights.
“Vista is an upsell masquerading as an upgrade. It is an overall regression when you look at the most important aspect of owning and using a computer: your control over what it does. Obviously MS Windows is already proprietary and very restrictive, and well worth rejecting. But the new 'features' in Vista are a Trojan Horse to smuggle in even more restrictions. We'll be focusing attention on detailing how they work, how to resist them, and why people should care”, said FSF program administrator John Sullivan.
The campaign will organize supporters into effective and unusual actions drawing attention to this daylight theft of computer users' rights, aggregate news stories cutting through the Vista marketing propaganda, and provide a user-friendly gateway to the adoption of free software operating systems like gNewSense (http://www.gnewsense.org) and Ututo (http://www.ututo.org).
Peter Brown, executive director of the FSF said, “Whilst Microsoft embarks upon its largest ever product launch, its marketing dollars will be spent in an effort to fool the media and user community about the goals of Vista. Our campaign will ask the important questions. Can you set yourself or your company free? Can you ever be free from Microsoft? As with our campaign against Digital Restrictions Management, we aim to demonstrate that technologists can be social activists, because we know the harm that Vista will cause”.
Among other harms, BadVista.org will focus on the danger posed by Treacherous Computing in Vista. Commonly called Trusted Computing in the industry, it is an attempt to turn computers from machines controlled by their user into machines that monitor their user and refuse to operate in ways that manufacturers don't authorize.
Supporters can sign up to receive more information and participate in the campaign at http://badvista.org.
The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and use of free (as in freedom) software—particularly the GNU operating system and its GNU/Linux variants— and free documentation for free software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of freedom in the use of software. Their Web site, located at www.fsf.org, is an important source of information about GNU/Linux. Donations to support their work can be made at http://donate.fsf.org. They are headquartered in Boston, MA, USA.
Press Contact: For more information about this announcement or to schedule an interview, please contact Peter Brown or John Sullivan at +1-617-542-5942 or <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
(This story is on digg.)