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Rented future: The dangerous rise of life as a service

Lucy Ingham



We are entering the post-ownership age. In recent years, the Service as a Software Substitute (SaaSS) model, which is already dominant in many areas of consumer software, has begun to spread into other aspects of our lives. It will soon be, if it isn't already, possible to live without actually owning possessions. You can now get your clothes, electronics and food -- among many other items -- on subscription, as well as real-world services such as laundry and transport. In time, we are set to see a handful of companies renting you everything you rely on, and that gives them incredible power, not only in terms of your possessions, but also in terms of their ideological control over you and the wider population. This session explores the potential damage of the Life as a Service (LaaS) model, and what free software can do to help.


7 months, 1 week ago

Tagged with

Lucy Ingham · SaaS · free software · Free the Future · LibrePlanet conference · LibrePlanet 2020 video · LibrePlanet 2020 · LibrePlanet · lp2020 · video · FSF


GFDL 1.3


This talk was presented at LibrePlanet.


LibrePlanet is the Free Software Foundation's annual conference. The FSF campaigns for free/libre software, meaning it respects users' freedom and community. We believe that users are entitled to this; all software should be free.


We do not advocate "open source".

That term was coined to reject our views. It refers to similar practices, but usually presented solely as advantageous, without talking of right and wrong.


Richard Stallman launched the free software movement in 1983 by announcing development of the free operating system, GNU. By 1992, GNU was nearly operational; one major essential component was lacking, the kernel.


In 1992, Torvalds freed the kernel Linux, which filled the last gap in GNU. Since then, the combined GNU/Linux system has run in millions of computers. Nowadays you can buy a new computer with a totally free GNU/Linux system preinstalled.


The views of the speaker may not represent the Free Software Foundation. The Foundation supports the free software cause and freedom to share, and basic freedoms in the digital domain, but has no position on other political issues.