Richard Stallman and Jono Bacon Differ on Ubuntu’s Amazon Search

 While some loyal Ubuntu users have quietly accepted the fact that Ubuntu now includes shopping suggestions from Amazon in desktop search results, many purists have cried foul over the practice. Joining the chorus of naysayers, open source software advocate Richard Stallman has posted a public objection to Canonical’s Amazon arrangement, and now, Ubuntu Community Manager Jono Bacon has responded to Stallman. Watch the fur fly. In a Free Software Foundation post, Stallman writes: "One of the major advantages of free software is that the community protects users from malicious software. Now Ubuntu GNU/Linux has become a counterexample…Amazon commits many wrongs (see http://stallman.org/amazon.html); by promoting Amazon, Canonical contributes to them. However, the ads are not the core of the problem. The main issue is the spying. Canonical says it does not tell Amazon who searched for what. However, it is just as bad for Canonical to collect your personal information as it would have been for Amazon to collect it." Stallman notes that Canonical includes functionality allowing users to switch the Amazon results off, but also says: "Clearly Canonical thinks that many Ubuntu users will leave this setting in the default state (on). And many may do so, because it

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