[A reply to this thread]
Brazil is walking the correct path to be the most advanced free-source country in the whole world, and yes, that includes the US. Why?
Government backing is one factor. We have our own version of GPL (which is partially incompatible with our legal system, but not void), the LPG. It was made/rewritten from the GPL by the Brazilian Advocate Union. Yes, it's the single one that every lawyer must abide to and respect. The Creative Commons license is in the process of being translated and becoming an official licensing term, as in government-backed and even encouraged.
Yes, there are projects to yeld tax cuts to people and companies that use/distribute/publish free software.
DMCA is null and void here. Yes, we have to follow international copyright laws but you won't be fined if you hack your cable box or DVD player to learn a bit. Piracy? I can tell, it's pretty much the same as everywhere, with the exception of audio CDs that is rampant around the country. So BMG wants to try out a new content protection scam^H^H^H^Hscheme, well baby it won't work. You have a moral choice, to buy a crippled, legal CD for R$30 (around US$10) or the full monty, "generic" version for R$5 (US$1.70). And don't forget we earn A LOT less than our yankee friends. Allow me to say, I am a doctor and I make less than 1000 US monthly.
Speaking of generic, that's one law that was pretty much shoved down US companies and they hated us for that. But Time magazine once praised Brazilian health treatment to AIDS, citing it as an example to Third World Country. What happens is, any medicine patented prior to 1992 lost the patent. Other pharmaceutical companies are allowed to fabricate and distribute them. This was "bad" for them but the final blow comes next: if there is a strong public health interest, the government may cancel any other medical patent.
Yes, AIDS treatment is free around here. Government-backed laboratories reverse-engineer and produce zidovudine, lamivudine, 3TC, protease inhibitors and whatnot. They are given (as in gratis) to registered AIDS patients.
You may say it's a harsh thing to do and laboratories want/need to make a profit, well, they do. But when public health is significantly more important than personal gain the table will turn. You know what? The laboratories whined at first, but now they kinda agree with that. They lost their rings to keep their fingers, as an adage says.
In music/entertainment, I can say for sure that many of the most prominent musicians like Gilberto Gil and Caetano Veloso are strong backers of the "music wants to be free" mindset.
Hey, don't take my word on that. Lawrence Lessig, Creative Commons director, recently told the press that Brazil is becoming the world's epicenter of Free/OSS dicussion.