NYS Does Not Respect Its Citizens' Software Freedom

Bradley M. Kuhn at 2016-04-08T22:50:56Z

I have gladly left the horrible state of New York, but in case you were wondering, there is now no way to file with a computer in NYS using only Free Software, even while people at the NYS statehouse claim to be passing Free Software friendly laws.

The e-filing has always had the problem that you must install non-Free Javascript to do it. I wrote to complain a few years ago, and NYS didn't care. I even wrote to the developer (whose name was in the Javascript, and he didn't care either). So I filled using the PDF fill-in.

For my partial year, I can't do that. The PDF fill_in now uses features available only in Adobe Acrobat: https://www.tax.ny.gov/pit/ads/efile_addit203-2d.htm

So, I'm seriously considering hand writing my return for the first time in more than a decade. I could use flpsed or other such tool to overlay text onto the boxes, but that's more work and why should I got to trouble to make their OCR job easier when NYS refuses to respect my software freedom?

(The federal form fill-ins (1040, etc.) seem to continue to work fine with Evince. e-filing at the federal level has always required a third-party vendor, and I know of none that are Free Software friendly, but that's a slightly different issue. NYs provides the e-filing directly on their own website.)

Benjamin Cook, Douglas Perkins, jrobertson likes this.

Arcee, Arcee, Arcee, Douglas Perkins and 3 others shared this.

Show all 5 replies
In Canada I can't file electronically unless I use a third party from the Intuit lobby, or a CPA.

So I send a stack of paper.

Hubert Figuière at 2016-04-09T02:50:56Z

BTW free software PDF hasn't really moved.... :-/ This is something that could be fixed, albeit it is a lot of work.

Hubert Figuière at 2016-04-09T02:51:47Z

>> Hubert Figuière:

“In Canada I can't file electronically unless I use a third party from the Intuit lobby, or a CPA.

So I send a stack of paper.”

I'm in Canada too; I use one of the online services who provide free returns for seniors. I hate the situation, and comes the revolution ...

B. Ross Ashley at 2016-04-09T05:56:49Z

Instead of proprietary or web-based forms, I usually mark and type on PDF's with GNU wikipedia.org/wiki/Xournal

delib at 2016-04-16T22:57:08Z