2011-04-20 Richard Stallman Speech at University of Pennsylvania - A Free Digital Society
The flyer for the event can be found here with the below description:
On April 20th, University of Pennsylvania's STWing (Science and Technology
Wing residential program) and the Dining Philosophers will be hosting an
open speech by Dr. Richard Stallman, founder of the free software movement,
on the topic of "A Free Digital Society". The event will take place in Wu
and Chen Auditorium in Levine Hall at 4:30-7pm and will be free to attend
and open to the general public.
Richard Matthew Stallman (rms) is best known for starting the GNU Project (
http://www.gnu.org/gnu/gnu.html ), for founding the Free Software Foundation
(http://www.fsf.org/ ), and pioneering GNU GPL (
http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl.html ) as well as other copyleft licenses
and free software/tools. The GNU Project currently provides the various
tools and software that, with the addition of the Linux kernel, constitutes
the popular GNU/Linux operating system that is used in millions of computers
today (via various free and non-free distributions such as gNewSense and
Over the years, Stallman has been an outspoken advocate and political
activist for the free software movement (note: "open source" is different
from "free software"; see
http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/open-source-misses-the-point.html ), always
encouraging others to keep the "hacker" culture alive. Since the mid-1990s,
Stallman spends much of his time delivering speeches on free software,
copyright ethics, and other related topics, not all technical in nature,
with most targeted at the general public. He has received numerous awards
and recognitions (listed on his personal website:
http://stallman.org/#serious ) and is viewed by many as an internationally
renowned and leading figure in the computer software community.
Stallman summarizes his "A Free Digital Society" speech, alternatively
titled "What Makes Digital Inclusion Good or Bad?", with the following:
Activities directed at "including" more people in the use of digital
technology are predicated on the assumption that such inclusion is
invariably a good thing. It appears so, when judged solely by
immediate practical convenience. However, if we also judge in terms
of human rights, whether digital inclusion is good or bad depends on
what kind of digital world we are to be included in. If we wish to
work towards digital inclusion as a goal, it behooves us to make sure
it is the good kind.
Please spread the word, mark down the date, and bring your friends! Copies
of Stallman's book of essays, "Free Software, Free Society," will also be
available for sale with a portion of the proceeds going to the Free Software
Foundation (a free copy can also be found at
We hope to see you there!
All the best,
The Dining Philosophers
The original 1hr 14min .ogv video can be downloaded from any of the following mirrors:
The video is encoded and recompressed using ffmpeg2theora to Ogg Theora/Vorbis
For those using web browsers not yet supporting html5's new 'video' tag, the free Cortado streaming app is embedded.
The video is also licensed under a CreativeCommons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.
If you are interested in mirroring this video, please contact me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
or ping Keripo in #ipodlinux or #stwinglounge @ freenode.net IRC channels.
I apologize ahead of time for the shaky first few minutes (I was trying to securely attach my cellphone camera on my
laptop using masking tape) as well as the few sections where video were accidentally cut out (due to either the phone
falling off my laptop or my cell phone's internal memory running out) and had to be concatenated together. It was
unexpected that there were no others recording the speech, so I tried my best.
(Philip Peng, STWing Cronos 2009-2011)