Debunking Free Software Myths

I fancy myself to be what some would call a “Free Software Advocate” and as such when I am making recommendations of free software to people I hear many of the same common misconceptions day in and day out. Lets separate some of the fact from the fiction shall we?

#1 Free software is Illegal

This is easily the most common phrase I hear when recommending free software to new people. (Not just the un-educated make this mistake either, one of my college professors made this assumption when I brought up the topic in class) Let me assure you that free software is 100% legal, you are not breaking any laws by downloading and using it. Most free software is typically released under the GNU license or some similar license.

#2 You get what you pay for

This idea is simply not always true in the case of software. Don’t believe me? Go give OpenOffice a download or maybe play around with image editing in Gimp for a short while. These are by no means “low quality” or “cheap” software simply because they are free of charge. Now, I am by no means saying that all FOSS programs are of this same quality – but then not all software that you have pay for is all that fantastic either.

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