Group: Windows 8

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FSF activists at the Windows 8 launch event.

The FSF is developing a campaign against Microsoft's newest proprietary creation. Our first action was crashing the Windows 8 launch event in NYC, where we handed out copies of a free operating system to curious reporters. The next step is to develop a whitepaper explaining the problems with Windows 8, which will form the intellectual backbone of the campaign.

The goal of this group is to crowdsource the development of the whitepaper. We want to hear all your concerns, ideas and personal experiences (though we don't recommend using it) with Windows 8. So far our core issues with Windows 8 are that it:

  • Restricts freedom
  • Invades privacy
  • Exposes personal data

You're welcome to elaborate on these or add your own.


  • Use the categories. Don't hesitate to make a new one if necessary.
  • Be as detailed as you can and provide external sources and citations when possible.
  • If you think your idea needs fact-checking or fleshing out, make a note about it.
  • Mark concerns that you believe are unique to Windows 8, as compared to previous versions.

Happy editing!


Restricts freedom

  • Windows 8 is proprietary software. At its core, it is designed to control you as a user. You can't modify Windows 8 or see how it is built, which means Microsoft can use its operating system to exploit users and benefit special interests.
  • Developers need a license from Microsoft to write a Metro-style program. Source: i-Programmer.

Invades privacy

  • Windows 8 includes software that inspects the contents of your hard drive, and Microsoft claims the right to do this without warning. These programs have misleading names like "Windows Genuine Advantage."

Exposes personal data

  • Windows 8 has a contacts cache that experts fear may store sensitive personal data and make users vulnerable to identity theft.
  • Watch Bruce Schneier (security expert) for updates on Windows 8 security problems.

The Microsoft tax

  • Manufacturers embed a windows licence in the BIOS thus making sure that a user pays the Microsoft tax for the hardware. Source: [1] (retrieved 2012-11-27)

"issue" is not in the list (interest, location, project, school) of allowed values for the "Organized around" property.

This page was a featured resource in October 2012.