One more reason to not use Skype for Linux

Even though Skype for Linux is unlike most applications available on any Linux installation, that is, it is a proprietary application, it has long been a popular chat and VoIP application for many users, not for free software purists, but for those that do not care about the core philosophies of free software.

If you belong to that group, that is, if any of the core principles of free software does not come into play in your decision to use or not use a software, the latest news about Skype should make you think twice about using it.

In a recent article published in the The Washington Post, Craig Timberg and Ellen Nakashima reports that “Skype … has expanded its cooperation with law enforcement authorities to make online chats and other user information available to police…”

This should not come as a shock to anybody, considering that Skype is now owned by Microsoft, the anti-Linux and anti-free software company, whose operating system and other software products are riddled with backdoors.

If you use Skype for Linux and if this development bothers, just know that there are alternatives, and they could already be installed or available in the repository of your favorite Linux distribution.

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58 Comments

  1. One more thing about the MS bashing: Apparently the law enforcement back door into skype predates the MS acquisition of the company.

  2. I use Skype (for Windows, Mac, Linux, Android and iOS) because the people I need to communicate with use it and nothing else. As someone else has said, the subjects of my communication via Skype are not the kind that would interest the NSA or law enforcement, even if the government were to change drastically.

    Besides, it is a mistake to assume that every decision one takes is or should be a political or ideological statement.

    • It’s the potential for abuse of these pervasive snooping that people should be talking about. Already, at the local level, there have been reported cases of local officials abusing their access to govt databases for personal revenge.

      Like somebody said about a month ago, all it takes for a dictatorship to happen is just one person at the very top. All the tools and laws are just there, waiting for the 21st Century Stalin.

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