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trashcan Linux. git. Hadoop. Filesystem storage. Block storage. Blockchain.

These are just some of the technologies and tools that have been created working with free and open source software (FOSS) methodologies. These tools have proven to be, time and time again, solid, stable, and commercially successful.

Yet, here we are, in 2017, still hearing arguments that FOSS licenses can introduce problems in your IT organization. Or comments from technology professionals who decry the value of open source, saying open source is never going to be truly innovative.

(See lede paragraph.)

The sad truth is, it is a truism of the human condition that it is much easier to tear down than build up. Rather than recognize the value in open source and try to embrace it, it is far more easier to simply attack it repeatedly, playing the same old tired songs we heard in the early years of the century.

The problem for the players of these classic FUD hits is that demonstrably FOSS-based technologies have consistently proven to be cost-effective, secure, and innovative.

The music is falling flat.

When I was a kid, I was taught that if you had to bring insults to an argument to make your point, you had lost your argument.

It's a lesson, sadly, that a lot of people have yet to learn. Turn on any news channel these days and you will see it's not just limited to the technology sector.

But throwing FUD around is not going to accomplish anything. Better to concentrate on building something positive. In the long run, that's the best way to make an impact on the world.

Image courtesy of Pixelbay, under the CC0 1.0 license.

About the author

Brian Proffitt is a Manager within Red Hat's Open Source Program Office, focusing on content generation, community metrics, and special projects. Brian's experience with community management includes knowledge of community onboarding, community health, and business alignment. Prior to joining Red Hat in 2014, he was a technology journalist with a focus on Linux and open source, and the author of 22 consumer technology books. 

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