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French PM Unreceptive To RMS 534

Posted by Hemos
from the poor-reception dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Six month after the publication of very bad amendments to French DRM law proposal, Richard Stallman has been pushed back by the chief of security team of French Prime minister. On Friday 9th of June 2006 at 3.30pm, Richard Stallman, president of Free Software Foundation, led a delegation composed by Frédéric Couchet (Free Software Foundation France) and Christophe Espern (EUCD.INFO initiative) to meet the French Prime minister in order to talk about the French DRM law proposal and to deliver the EUCD.INFO petition signed by more than 165,000 French residents. Richard Stallman and his friends were pushed back by the chief of security team. "
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French PM Unreceptive To RMS

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  • RMS! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) * <whineymacfanboy@gmail.com> on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:32AM (#15517122) Homepage Journal
    Word of Advice: DO NOT try this in your home country.
    • Why not. He would get almost the exact same treatment?
      Oh it is because you think that France has more respect for free speech the the US...
      I guess you didn't see the protests/riots on CNN over labor reform, you might also try this in Google France+Rainbow+warrior
      That being said trying to force your way into seeing any government official is at best dumb and most likely dangerous.
      • by Tim C (15259)
        The Rainbow Warrior?

        Yes, it was a travesty by all accounts, but talk about ancient history. Are you seriously going to blame that on the current administration?
    • Re:RMS! (Score:3, Insightful)

      by jellomizer (103300) *
      I am not sure if you looked at the photos or not. But RMS didn't even Dress up for the occasion. Which I would considered very rude and unprofessional, even as a programmer. What do you expect the guard to do. Let a bumb from the streets into the building. I am sure their orders and training tell them even with all the credentials and ID if they feel suspisios of the person not to let them in. If you have a meeting with a high position person and you have it scheduled you really should dress up for it. N
      • Re:RMS! (Score:3, Funny)

        by Hoi Polloi (522990)
        When I worked in Cambridge, Mass, I was near enough to MIT to see what a coworker and I called "The Cult of Richard Stallman". It consisted of the occasional solitary pudgy male wearing at least a too-tight black t-shirt if not all black. The t-shirt usually had a computer reference on it (usually a Linux penguin) or an anime image. An unkempt and long beard and hair were requirements.

        Since I never talked to one of these guys I can't say for certain if any of them has ever said "Worst episode ever!".
      • Re:RMS! (Score:3, Insightful)

        by UserGoogol (623581)
        RMS is the sort of person who will stand to his principles to the point of absurdity (GNU/Linux, lol) and I would not be surprised if one of RMS's principles is "dressing up for formal occasions is stupid." (Which is not an unreasonable position to hold.)

        So yes, he's being impolite, but I think that saying it's because he's full of himself is to miscontrue the situation slightly.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    What happened, they were all out of white flags?
  • by ucahg (898110) on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:33AM (#15517132)
    Failing to have an appointment organized with the Prime Minister, Richard Stallman then decided to go to the ministry at Matignon (the place where French Prime minister works) on Friday 9th of June at 3h30 pm, with the printed list of the 165 000 signatures of EUCD.INFO petition and to try to be received by the Prime Minister and to deliver the EUCD.INFO petition (printed on a 17 meters long banner).


    Is this really a news story? Someone without an appointment tries to seek a personal audience with a world leader and is denied? That's not anti-DRM, it's just common sense.
    • by DaPoulpe (795028) on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:42AM (#15517224) Homepage Journal
      Then the problem may be that he was denied an appointment in the first place don't you think ?
      For they are not just "someone" but 3 individuals quite involved into this DRM saga, thus having points and a petition to be discussed.
      Bill Gates is received with all the honors by the President and RMS & Co can't even reach the prime minister or even some random official guy ?
    • How does this get moderated Troll? It is common sense. If I walked up to the Governor in my state without an appointment and started trying to convince him to use (GNU)Linux on every state computer, I assume that I'd get stopped too. Does the submitter think that RMS should be getting special treatment?
    • Not only that, but if you are going to attempt to barge in for an unscheduled appointment, at least dress appropriately! I mean, you're going to meet the Prime Minister, don't you think a tie is in order? Or at least a step up from khakis and a polo shirt? These guys look more like college kids than the heads of political organizations. I wouldn't take them seriously either.

      -Rick
      • Thank you! (Score:5, Insightful)

        by CrazedWalrus (901897) on Monday June 12, 2006 @01:26PM (#15517963) Journal
        I looked at those pictures and was HORRIFIED by the man's appearance. It's once thing for a 60's computer nerd to dress and act like one in his own domain, but seriously, RMS, next time you're going to attempt to meet a leader of a farking country, please:

        1. Shave.
        2. Wear a suit and tie. A good one, not a $99 JC Penny clearance jobbie discounted to $75.
        3. Shave.


        Seriously, the khakis and polo shirt may partially balance off the boxcar hobo facial hair for your normal everyday operations, but it doesn't show a proper degree of respect for the person you're trying to meet who happens to be an elected official. Remember the hooplah about the college girls' soccer team who met the President in nice sun dresses and flip-flops? Just a hint: you don't half look as good as those girls -- maybe less. Work harder at your appearance. They did you a favor by not letting you in the door. You'd have embarrassed yourself and us looking like that.

        When you are a leader, delegate, or some other form of representative, you need to give the proper impression of the people you are representing. It may well be that F/OSS people are old hippies with too much facial hair and a beer gut, but you do them a grave disservice to paint them that way. By showing up with that list of 165,000 people, you have appointed yourself their representative, and you painted them with a bad brush from first glance. You need to be their best face. The impression of you is the impression of them.

        You want respect (and that's what this is all about, right?), you need to:

        1. Give it.
        2. Earn it.
        ...in that order. Good attire and personal hygiene go a long way toward both. Bad attire and personal hygiene go a long way against. You may have spent your life bucking the system, but at a certain point it becomes self-defeating. Sorry bud, but that's how the world works. Damn, man. I wear better clothes than that to work every day. I'd be embarrassed to show up at my day job looking like that. You want to represent me? Look better than me.

        • Re:Thank you! (Score:3, Insightful)

          by node 3 (115640)
          RMS's character is well established, and it would be *foolish* for him to do as you suggest. The importance of RMS isn't based on his appearance, but on his ideals and his efforts and accomplishments in furthering them.

          I can almost understand the advice to dress formally--while shallow and superficial, it's not a bad idea--but the emphasis on shaving is really appalling on your part.

          It gets even worse:

          You want respect (and that's what this is all about, right?), you need to:

          Give it.
          Earn it.

          This is absolutel

      • I mean, you're going to meet the Prime Minister, don't you think a tie is in order? Or at least a step up from khakis and a polo shirt?

        Why? Because the guy deserves to be treated like someone special? He's better than these guys so they need to, "dress to impress?"

        Hardly. The prime minister works for the people, not the other way around.

        It is people like you who actually believe that toadying up to politicians, "showimg respect for the office," etc, etc is important, letting them forget who they work for
    • Is this really a news story? Someone without an appointment tries to seek a personal audience with a world leader and is denied? That's not anti-DRM, it's just common sense.

      Zealotry and common sense are not mutually exclusive, though they often do not seem to coexist.
  • Tag: Obvious (Score:3, Insightful)

    by roman_mir (125474) on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:34AM (#15517142) Homepage Journal
    The delegation led by Richard Stallman was kindly but firmly pushed back by the chief of security team of French Prime minister saying : the decision not to receive Richard Stallman was mature considered .

    In the PCInpact article Frédéric Couchet, from FSF France, evokes the difference in treatment between the reception of Bill Gates as a Head of State by the president of the Republic and that of Richard Stallman by the chief of the security team of Matignon . Richard Stallman believes to have the explanation: Gates is the emperor, we are only citizens , he said.
    - duh. Earth to RMS: some French dude, who happens to be a PM of France doesn't HAVE to listen to you and choses not to listen to you, but if you offer money he may reconsider, are you surprised?

    (note: I am not saying BG offered money, I am saying BG is seen as someone, who can bring monetary advantages to a country.)
  • with a head of state. This was simply a stunt to gain exposure. I am all for supporting the proliferation of free software and the free software movement, but this will only marginalize the cause yet once again at the hands of RMS.
  • by Manip (656104) on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:35AM (#15517154)
    So Richard Stallman approached the French Prime Minister's delegation, and tried to force their way though to have a private word with him about DRM laws? ...

    Even outside of politics that isn't acceptable behaviour. How would you feel if you ran a business and as you left the office the CEO of another company was trying to convince you to sell your shares to him, following you about and such? ... That just isn't normal behaviour.

    Normal people make a meeting... Or if failing that they write the grievance down and hand deliver it. They don't make a run at the guy, and try and get it words and then act like a victim when it doesn't work.

    Damn right the security pushed him back... He should have been asked to leave if he acts like that.
    • by jeremie_z_ (639708) on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:48AM (#15517269) Homepage
      Actually many associations (APRIL, FSF France, EUCD.INFO) wrote many letters to ask for an interview between the prime minister and RMS. Actually none of them was answered.

      Letters were sent a few days ago to tell the day and hour of his coming (he flew from Boston especially for this occasion), so he wasn't exactly "forcing his way" and the guards said that de decision to refuse him was "maturely decided"... This is a political decision of not receiving him, and nothing else.
      • What the hell? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by C10H14N2 (640033) on Monday June 12, 2006 @01:01PM (#15517799)
        Letters were sent a few days ago to tell the day and hour of his coming

        The arrogance of that is simply astounding. "I shall arrive, you shall se me." Pardon? It doesn't help that he insists on showing up looking like Robbie Coltrane on holiday and certainly not combined with that downright papal attitude. Newsflash, Richard, the rest of the world DOES expect to be treated with respect and that includes making appointments--in reasonable time--and showing up properly attired. Oh yes, you're an eccentric genius...yeah, and he's the Prime Minister of France. Wear a fucking suit and comb your goddamned hair, you lazy slob.
    • by hahiss (696716) on Monday June 12, 2006 @12:14PM (#15517465) Homepage

      Well, one difference is that the PM is in charge of a democracy, whereas the two people in your analogy are economic competitors. One might reasonably be inclined to think that those in charge of a democracy have some duty to listen to their citizens, and one might also wonder just how accessible our ``leaders" are these days. (I live in Texas, and I'm way to the left. Do you think I'm going to get an audience with my insanely conservative senators to explain why they should support net neutrality or abortion rights or drug legalization or gay marriage? Yeah, ``make an appointment"---that's a great idea.)

      Of course, RMS is not a citizen of France (though other members of the delegation are), and we can always debate the effectiveness of any particular political action/stunt. But the idea that he was just being rude because he was demanding attention from the elected leaders of a democracy is the kind of notion that ensures that the status quo (and whoever owns it) rules the day.
      • Do you think I'm going to get an audience with my insanely conservative senators to explain why they should support net neutrality or abortion rights or drug legalization or gay marriage? Yeah, ``make an appointment"---that's a great idea.)

        I mean this in all seriousness - have you tried? Have you met with the staffers? Have you written letters? Or are you using your assumptions of failure as a reason not to make the effort?

      • by bsartist (550317) on Monday June 12, 2006 @02:49PM (#15518582) Homepage
        One might reasonably be inclined to think that those in charge of a democracy have some duty to listen to their citizens

        In theory, yes. In practice, there's no way a senior official can personally meet each and every citizen and discuss his or her concerns with them. That's why different levels of government and "official channels" exist - you start with the secretary (or whatever) and someone at each level decides whether the matter can be handled at that level, or kicked up to the next. You'd be amazed how many nutjobs want to go directly to the President to discuss issues that would be more appropriate for their city's Mayor. It's almost like a DDOS attack on the bureacracy - it makes it much more difficult for a legitimate request to work its way through.

        All told, only an idiot would seriously expect to receive an appointment with a senior official on two weeks notice, and I don't think RMS is an idiot. This looks to me like he knew full well he wouldn't get in, so he made a cheap publicity stunt out of it. Unfortunately for the "movement", this stunt puts him on about the same level as the guy who climbed Buckingham Palace in a superhero (Batman, I think...) costume.
  • no offense to RMS (Score:5, Insightful)

    by asv108 (141455) <alex@phatauNETBSDdio.org minus bsd> on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:37AM (#15517175) Homepage Journal
    but he is the last person that should be representing the free software community to politicians. You need a clean cut person in a suit who is familiar with the politics of that nation. Why do think people hire lobbyists instead of appealing to politicians directly?
    • ehm, what about this oh-so-crazy idea: the PEOPLE should represent the PEOPLE
    • Why do think people hire lobbyists instead of appealing to politicians directly?

      For the same reason people don't like making their own sausage - they have the same lack of stomach (ha!) for grinding pig intestines that they do for placing a hundred thousand bucks in the politician's reelection fund.
      • Hmm... I've made my own sausage many times and have never used pig intestines as part of the stuffing (the part that needs to be ground). The intestines are used for the casing, if at all.
    • You need a clean cut person in a suit who is familiar with the politics of that nation.

      So politicians should ignore people who don't dress in suits? I expect you think that Gandhi should have been ignored because he was just a tramp in a loincloth, right?

  • newsflash (Score:3, Insightful)

    by abigsmurf (919188) on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:39AM (#15517195)
    Disgruntled man stopped by security when he barged his way to French parliment and demanded to see a top MP! This is really a piece of non-news. Just because he's got a petition doesn't give him the right to see them. If he really wanted action to take place he'd organise a series of protests that can't just be turned away.
    • make the PM an offer he can't refuse, like blowing up the Eiffel Tower. The way RMS looks, I think they would have taken him more seriously then.
  • Confused... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Ajehals (947354) <a.halsall@pirateparty.org.uk> on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:45AM (#15517244) Homepage Journal
    Im confused by this story. Firstly If someone turns up to see the Prime minister / President / Head Honcho of any country (or most organisations) without an invitation or appointment they are likely to be told "thanks, but no thanks". I don't really think that the "pushed away" part of this article, which appears to be the focus has any bearing on anything at all. (FTA: The delegation led by Richard Stallman was kindly but firmly pushed back by the chief of security team of French Prime minister saying : the decision not to receive Richard Stallman was mature considered .)

    The French government seem to be split on issues relating to open source (Software patents and DRM etc.) but do seem to be discussing it in public and with some authority, putting France somewhere at the top of the list of countries doing something about the issues at hand. We don't know which way it will swing, but at least we know it will be discussed first. Oh and congratulations to the 165,000 French People and 1000 Organisations who signed the EUCD.INFO petition, your doing something and this story should have focused on you, not on getting the most interesting headline.
  • Give Me A Break (Score:4, Interesting)

    by TheFlyingGoat (161967) on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:46AM (#15517250) Homepage Journal
    So their complaint is that the French PM's office wouldn't arrange a meeting with them, so they showed up at the door with a petition? And then they go on to try contrasting it with how the world's richest man (Gates) was received by the PM's office?

    Give me a freakin' break.

    Although Stallman has done a lot for free software, government officials probably don't know nor care who he is. I'm sure the French PM's schedule is CRAZY, and like any head of state they would NEVER allow a walk-in visitor. The behavior of the PM's office is predictable, and yet they decided to go anyway instead of finding some better method of getting their petition to the PM.

    Stallman should focus on actually trying to improve the state of things instead of weak publicity stunts like this. He's an attention whore, plain and simple.
    • Re:Give Me A Break (Score:5, Insightful)

      by mrchaotica (681592) * on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:54AM (#15517318)
      The behavior of the PM's office is predictable, and yet they decided to go anyway instead of finding some better method of getting their petition to the PM.

      How were they supposed to find some better method when the PM's office wouldn't even dignify their request with a response, pray tell? If the secretary had even made an attempt to arrange something that would be one thing, but being ignored completely is unacceptable.

      • Here's a test... take a petition to your head of state and come back and let us know how you got on.

        The Premieres office is not he place to deliver such a petition. The appropriate ministry is... in fact finding a house representitive should probably be your first step.

        Write up how it goes for you, and let us know.
  • by Billosaur (927319) * <wgrother@optRABB ... minus herbivore> on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:47AM (#15517260) Journal

    On Friday 9th of June 2006 at 3.30pm, Richard Stallman led a delegation composed by Frédéric Couchet (Free Software Foundation France) and Christophe Espern (EUCD.INFO initiative) to meet the French Prime minister in order to talk about the French DRM law proposal. Richard Stallman and his friends were pushed back by the chief of security team.

    ...or we will taunt you a second time!

  • by bigattichouse (527527) on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:51AM (#15517294) Homepage
    I am an American, and I have to say to mr. Stallman:

    Please wear a suit when trying to meet with foreign dignitaries.

    And at least wear your hair back and trim your beard a little. You look like a hippy slob, and that was how you were received.

    You do free software a disservice by appearing like don't you give a crap. You expect them to take you seriously looking like you don't take them seriously?
    • Exactly is wrong with "hippy slobs"? What makes you think that you can tell whether or not someone gives a crap by looking at them?
  • Why does anyone continue to give Stallman any credibility? A publicit stunt for sure, but in the end could very well reflect negatively on the community as a whole.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:55AM (#15517323)
    You may not agree with Stallman's tactics, but the message this sends is clear: The people passing today's draconian intellectual property laws they are NOT representing the general public -- they are representing coporate interests.

    Bill Gates is a citizen of the US, just like Stallman. Gates and Stallman take opposing viewpoints on the particular issue, and both are well known and intelligent individuals with strong arguments. However, only Gates was allowed to talk to the PM.

    Stallman tried to get an audience with the PM, but was refused. It was only after the refusal that he tried to just "barge in", and there is *nothing wrong with this*. This kind of thing has happened throughout history -- a corrupt goverment has favored a certain group of people, and the unfavored group resorts to any tactics necessary to get themesleves heard.

    Those of you who are criticizing Stallman, saying thing like "duh, I could have told you this would fail"... You're totally missing the point. Stallman also knew it would fail. Why else would he have a cameraman on hand ready to document the event. He's making a point, and it seems like a lot of people are missing it.

    In a very real sense, Stallman represents the little guy, and Gates represents the corporate interests. In a very real sense, the goverments are NOT listening to the people. When the governments are only hearing one side of the story on DRM/copyright, it should be obvious that the laws are going to be heavily biased. And *this* is what is bad. Nobody from the opposite end of the spectrum is being listened to, and we are LOSING OUR RIGHTS.

    Stallman is out there putting his ass on the line to show people this, and hopefully reach a larger audience than the few geeks on Slashdot who already know how bad everything has gotten. Before you get too critical of his methods, ask yourself what *you* have done to help turn the tide. Because sitting on your ass complaining about the shutdown of The Pirate Bay isn't accomplishing a damn thing.

    • I disagree. I think this is a simple case of a man who decided to disregard the fact that he was turned down an audience with the prime minister. The head of state. The guy with a million-plus things to do. The result is obvious. Nothing at all was demonstrated except this man's simple ignorance.

      Assume for a moment that RMS decided to visit StateA to talk with its PM. As a citizen of StateA, I want the government and its officials to be doing things for me. That's why I elect them. If a guy comes to the PM'
    • by hackus (159037) on Monday June 12, 2006 @01:58PM (#15518175) Homepage
      A couple of Points:

      Your quite right Stallman knew this was going to fail. But the real issue is something you neglected to point out is, that DRM is not about copying songs and video.

      This is a much bigger issue than that.

      It has to do with education, who gets knowledge, who can pay for knowledge and those that can't are screwed.

      This goes for anything science or technology related.

      Throughout history corrupt regimes and governments have known all too well that citizens that can read or write, or are empowered to discover or reorganize information without dogma are "disruptive" to the state as a whole.

      Whether you like it or not, Universities, school systems etc are not setup by what one accomplishes or contributes. They are setup for those who want to play "the game" so to speak. Don't play the "game" and your out. This is painfully obvious if you are in a computer science department and are doing research. If someone doesn't like your ideas, your out.

      See it happen to my prof personally and the process is disgusting because it ties everything to money and corporate contributors and very little of it has to do with any real science.

      What Stallman is really advocating is that information and technology should be available for all, free for all and there should be no barriers constructed artifically or legislated by governments.

      Since most of his arguments revolve around software this makes sense because software is what directs computers to share or not share information. As the world becomes fully networked, obviously there is going to be a huge divide if something isn't done about it soon.

      The little guy here as you should point out is every Slashdot reader.

      I also believe you made a interesting point about governments listening. If it hasn't hit everyone in the head by now, governments ARE listening quite well to thier citizens. But these citizens are not individuals, they are corporations.

      I do not even believe governments such as those in the US for example even listen to citizens as defined as "voter" anymore.

      Which brings me to a rather not so nice future painting. The entire globe is one huge computer network. If you don't work for a corporation, you can't learn. Can't learn, can't get a job. Can't get a job, your even lower than the guy working for the corporation so you get substandard or next to no healthcare, your kids can't go to college because it is too expensive. (i.e. every public university will be corporate owned in about 20-30 years anyway at the rate its going. Form a buget perspective anyway.) Furthermore, if you are caught making copies of information say about "Calculas" or "American History" DRM books you can instantly be imprisoned for hard labor with no trial.

      Sounds absolutely rediculous if it wasn't for the fact that it has already happened.

      -Hack
    • by Corbets (169101) on Monday June 12, 2006 @02:27PM (#15518418) Homepage
      He's making a point, and it seems like a lot of people are missing it.

      Then he didn't make the point very well, did he?
  • Poor PM... (Score:2, Funny)

    by DMiax (915735)
    ... having RMS after you mustn't be a nice experience! He is the real victim of this. :P
  • by markov_chain (202465) on Monday June 12, 2006 @11:57AM (#15517341) Homepage
    the story was about a poorly designed French Power Module not working with alternating current
  • by ivoras (455934) <ivoras@nosPAm.fer.hr> on Monday June 12, 2006 @12:00PM (#15517367) Homepage
    According to Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/France [wikipedia.org]), France has a population of over 63 milion people! 165 thousand is probably the size of average village over there. It's nothing.

    Since there were so little signatures, this could mean three things: a) there's and evil scheme to supress free speech and petition signing, b) people are not well educated on the subject or c) people simply don't agree with the petition. Choose one.

    • Maybe France is different, but here in the US there's a huge discrepancy between the number of people who hold an opinion and the number of people willing to take the effort to express it (by signing a petition, voting, or whatever). I would say 165,000 signatures is a lot even here, let alone in France.

      Not to mention the difficulty in advertizing the thing in the first place, and the logistics of getting the document and the signer in the same place.... it's likely that most of those 63 million people nev

  • Look at the photos (Score:5, Interesting)

    by T.Hobbes (101603) on Monday June 12, 2006 @12:00PM (#15517371)
    here [tofz.org]. Stallman spoke to the security guards on the street outside the office, was denied entry, then unrolled the (very long) petition of concerned citizens in the gutter as a symbolic gesture. He didn't rant and rave and try and push his way into some gilded office.
  • Hell... I wouldn't let him in to see ME, even if I knew who he was!

    Now, don't get me wrong, I'm all for the "relaxed" dress code and all, but if I'm meeting a new client, I'll sure as hell put on the monkey suit and try and look respectable.

    NEVER MIND if I were to try and see a world leader, without an appointment.

    Did he seriously expect to actually meet the guy?

    For real?

    I think someone's losing touch with reality a bit...

  • parfume (Score:4, Funny)

    by drwho (4190) on Monday June 12, 2006 @12:11PM (#15517448) Homepage Journal
    I'd say it was because of RMS' bodily odor, but then I remembered that this was France we're talking about.
  • by jeremie_z_ (639708) on Monday June 12, 2006 @12:17PM (#15517483) Homepage
    ... not to receive RMS.. and not a question of planning, or appointment of whatever... Matignon was warned for a few weeks of his coming, and could have make him be received by any small office-counselor, as humiliating as it would have been, some "chargé de mission" or whatever. but instead decided to leave him 100m away from the place. That's exacly how was treated the free software position about DRM, internet-filtering dispositions, articles forcing DRM into any software, and so many other atrocities commited into the DADVSI law in the name of "protecting the authors". ... well the authors of Free Software were just unheard.
  • Here's a little side note. When attempting to meet heads of state, you might want to dress the part of someone who's serious.
  • This is Europe, not the US. Politicians are supposed to pretend to be just like us. Look at the British Prime Minister. He is in fact a member of the traditional upper classes (but Scots) just like his Conservative opposite number, but he tries to talk and behave in public like a typical City of London bank worker. (Mind you, Bush is a Connecticut aristo who pretends to be a Texan. No difference there.) It is necessary to give the illusion of democracy, even though the UK is actually run for years at a time
  • by Annoyed broccoli (912877) on Monday June 12, 2006 @12:30PM (#15517583)
    For the love of Pete... This has to be the most damaging form of protest ever. Folks! Wake up! This is counter-productive! France is voting for a new president and a new parliament next year. Why don't you go and make your case to Segolene Royal and Nicolas Sarkozi? Why aren't you showing your petition to your MP? What are you trying to achieve by meeting a prime minister who has less than a year in office, and has 30% approval rate? You may think that there is nothing to life other than being anti-DRM and pro-OSS, but over 10% of the French population is unemployed, the suburbs were burning last fall and student protests were paralyzing the country a couple months ago. Have a bit of perspective here. The dude has to prioritize. He knows he ain't staying, and pissing you off is probably an acceptable trade-off to him building his legacy with the population at large. So please, please, please stop the whining and come back when you have a better game plan. Actions as such are your cause.
  • by kimvette (919543) on Monday June 12, 2006 @12:33PM (#15517609) Homepage Journal
    At first glance I mis-read the headline as "French PM unreceptive to PMS" and my first thought was he must not get along well with his wife. *chuckle*
  • by Chas (5144) on Monday June 12, 2006 @02:18PM (#15518347) Homepage Journal
    According to Wikipedia, he's GNU/53. And ego-mania aside, he's a moderately intelligent individual. So why the hell is he involved in a stupid stunt worthy of an adolescent who just discovered girls are nice and wants to impress them?

    I can understand wanting to see a head of state. But what kind of self-centered lack-a-wit, KNOWING he doesn't have an appointment, having gotten ZERO feedback from the official's office, decides he's just gonna barge on in and get an audience? I mean COME ON! Use some common effin' sense!

    Just my GNU/Cents.
  • Inconsistency (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Yvanhoe (564877) on Monday June 12, 2006 @03:03PM (#15518693) Journal
    Six month after the publication of very bad amendments to French DRM law proposal

    These amendments were introduced mainly because of the fear that Apple would have to change its system to comply with the law. Lobbies have used this occasion to push a lot of "technical stuff" over old senators (I believe they are around 70 on average) effectively putting OSS at risk. You can't have both Apple iTune current system and a DRM-free country.

    On a side note, the PM has no power right now and is not listened even by his own political party. The president is in the same situation, in fact, the country is without anyone at the commands. The lethargy should last until 2007, the next presidential election. Do not expect any debate on anything in the meantime, the last important law the PM tried to push brouht rioters in the streets, his current policy is to do "damage control" during the next 10 months.

Never buy from a rich salesman. -- Goldenstern

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