The Imaginot Line

With Paris still gently smoldering, the French Department of Culture has taken time out from socialist hand-wringing over the living conditions of the “youths” who burned Parisian exurbs for 2 weeks in order to tell programmers they will not be allowed to give their own software away.

[The Department of Culture] has told Free Software authors: “You will be required to change your licenses.” SACEM add: “You shall stop publishing free software,” and warn they are ready “to sue free software authors who will keep on publishing source code” should the “VU/SACEM/BSA/FA Contents Department”… bill proposal pass in the Parliament.

In protest, some programmers give up Brie and truffles, threaten to bathe more often, to be less snotty to foreigners and to demand that their few female friends shave armpits and legs, “You want a culture war? We’ll give you a culture war!” Others ask; “When was the last time France won any dispute? The French are ready to fight, so we know the winning side.”

France can’t defend its cities against imported Islamists, but they think they can defend their culture against a bunch of geeks by supressing free speech. Obviously, they do not understand the definition of the word “culture.”

And you wonder why UN control of the Internet would be a bad thing?

One cannot but help be reminded of this bit from Monty Python and The Holy Grail:

French Soldier on Ramparts: We don’t wanna talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food trough wiper! I fart in your general direction! Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries!

King Arthur: Is there someone else up there we could talk to?

French Soldier: No, now go away or we shall taunt you a second time!

Distributed Denial of Service attack on .fr follows. New riots begin in protests over lack of access to Al-Jazeera website.

Some culture.