RMS pulls a serious power move (read: dick move), unilaterally appointing a maintainer to Guile without consulting the other co-maintainers or community, because the current co-maintainers disagree with him on governance

It's also worth reading @dthompson's followup here

David's experience is also mine; there's a reason I dropped my association as a "GNU hacker", which used to be the way I identified myself for some time.

For many people, I'm sure these things seem to be shocking, as if all of this is happening at once. I'm shocked by how fast things have devolved, but not the way they are, because I already saw and tried to change for years how bad it was until I gave up.

Guile and Guix are two of the nicest places to be in GNU currently, and quite frankly some of the most interesting; as far as relevance of GNU as an organization that does new and interesting things, there's only a small handful of projects that I really feel excited about the developments of. (GNU in its early days, was a very innovative project, but after some time I think stopped putting effort there.)

If there's a future to hope for in GNU, its path forward is lead by those projects.

Apparently mark has now said that he misunderstood, and was asked if he wanted to be appointed co-maintainer, but the action had not actually occured.

I still find it strange, but that's definitely less of an extreme action than what I had understood previously.

I think of them as 'the new GNU', and have described it as such to others.


The forked project umbrella should be called ING - Inclusive Not GNU.


#GNU #FreeSW

GNU/FSF shit 

@cwebber Fork all GNU projects?? :D

@cwebber I cannot read responses, I start to boil. Spineless, disgusting techbroish abuse defenders.
We need something else than GNU. it's dead as an "operating system" project for a long time and association is a pain rather than benefit.

@cwebber @dthompson

Smell like there are several power games at work in #GNU and in #Guile right now.

And since I've followed all the drama around #RMS' mail and I've seen how a crowd of people lynched him for what he SAID, I can't say I'm shocked by this reaction from Andy.

I've read his words before and I see how he is trying to profit as much as possible from the shitstorm that is on #Stallman right now.

@Shamar @cwebber so, uh, we're with Andy on this. if anyone is power hungry here, it's rms. we just want rms held accountable for his poor leadership.


I noticed you are with Andy.

That's why I replied to @cwebber

I don't know #RMS personally and I disagree with him on MANY MANY things. Even when we talk about #FreeSoftware I think he is too moderate (and I'm a catholic Christian so you might guess by yourselves on how many other things I deeply disagree with him! 😉).

But the arguments of Andy are poor. As the arguments of the crowd that got is head at #FSF.

#Software is a form of expression, so software #freedom IS freedom of expression.

Andy joined the crowd that lynched #Stallman for what he WROTE (conveniently misreading it, to be precise).

If you know that Stallman did any crime towards women, you have only ONE thing to do: denounce him and provide evidence to the police.

Each day you delay his trial is a day more you are accomplices of his crimes.

I'm very serious on this.
There is nothing else to do when you face a crime.

If RMS did any crime, denounce him.

Otherwise, please, stop this.

@Shamar @dthompson @cwebber

This isn't a criminal procceding. It's a crisis of organizational leadership.

Learn the difference.

#RMS is no leader; he's a despotic dictator and cult leader. He has done far more harm to his movement than good.


Yeah #RMS has this bad attitude with #opensource champions like those multinational corporations that control the #narrative of the #Web (and what you think)!

As for "more harm than good" it's a ridiculous statement: while I think he got priorities wrong with #FreeSoftware, there would be no #Linux without #GNU. And there would be no #GNU without #Stallman.

You are right this isn't a criminal proceeding so either he didn't do any crime (and those who lynched him violated his human rights as stated by article 18, 19 and 12, just to gain power) or he is (and all people who didn't denounced him are complicit)

@dthompson @cwebber

@Shamar @dthompson @cwebber there are several mistakes in what you write here.

You misapply the term "lynch" for what happened to rms. I hope you're aware enough of the last 50 years of US racial oppression that I don't have to be more verbose, but we can have that educational discussion if you'd like.

It's not accurate to state that rms merely spoke and those words are what he's seeing the consequences of. Rather, he's behaved in ways that are a misuse of power, for decades. His recent active defense of indefensible positions and individuals is merely the latest and most visible of those. All he had to do to avoid this current outcry was to heed the warnings of the many people who tried to counsel him. I've read personal accounts by at least 3 people who repeatedly told rms that his choices to act (including choosing to weigh in on discussions outside the purview of his work, using his position of social power due to the importance of GNU), was harmful to free software. 1/2

@Shamar @dthompson @cwebber
... rms chose to continue his crusades and thereby alienated dozens of folks, needlessly, who would otherwise have been productive members of the free software community.

It's the damage that rms has done over decades, through his speech and his direct actions, despite being counseled by folks he should have respected, that has led to this consequence of rms being removed from his positions of power.

Accountability for one's own actions is if anything the opposite of lynching.

long, RMS lynching, free software, free speech 



First, this HAS BEEN a lynching.
Thanks God, not a physical one, but a cybernetic one: misinformed people all over the world has been coordinated to shitpost him till they got his head at #FSF. But he has been lynched for WHAT HE WROTE. He hasn't been removed for his bad behavior with women. He hasn't been removed for his political use of his position in #GNU. He has been removed because of this "outcry" for what he wrote.

Now, if you argue that any of his behavior was so abusive that he alienated dozen of people from FS, without such behavior being illegal, then I agree with you: you should fight to change your laws to forbid such behaviour.

But if you argue that he should be held accountable for his #political opinions (most of which, I don't share) because such opinions alienated dozen, I think you haven't understand what free software is.

As I said, #programming is a form.of expression: as President of #Free #Software Foundation and leader of #GNU, RMS had the duty to fully express his weird opinions.

People who can't live in a pluralistic society, working with people who have the weirdest opinions (but do no crime), don't really want #freedom, not for everybody at least. So if people left the free software movement for RMS opinions, they did the right thing (at least at that moment of their life) since they weren't going to contribute to freedom.

I think your valuation error is well evidenced by the use of the "productive" word. You are measiring people contribution by their throughput, as if GNU was a corporation building products that will compete in the market.

It is not.

It's a Political movement!

The real issue with RMS is that he doesn't belong to any of the minorities that populate #US remorse. He isn't a person.of color. He isn't a woman. He isn't gay. And so on.

He is a #hacker.

#SJWs' passion for inclusion stop before of us.

We are too different to be included.
Too weird. We do not deserve due processes or civil rights. We not even #human to your eyes, I guess.

You want a bunch of nice, politically correct (aka hypocrites), people in FS. And RMS is not one of them.

@dthompson @cwebber

long, RMS lynching, free software, free speech 

@Shamar @eqe @dthompson @cwebber He can still be a contributor tho, but he shouldn't lead. But we don't need assholes in leadership positions.

The difference between consequences and lynching 

@Shamar let's focus just on this point, because your overly emotional response to the situation makes it important that we have a shared understanding of what the words mean. It's ok to be emotional, we all are! And many tech dudes don't have a lot of experience dealing with our own emotions so you don't need to feel bad if it's clouding your judgement!

Lynching is the action of a powerful group killing a member of a disadvantaged group merely to extend their domination, not because of any actual misdeed of the opressed person. In the movie O Brother Where Art Thou, the blameless young black kid is nearly lynched by the KKK. They grab him and are about to hang him (avoiding a spoiler here, it's a great movie.)

Consequences are when bad things happen to people as a result of their actions. In the movie one of the characters who's sympathetic at the beginning reveals himself to be awful in the end, and gets run out of town on a rail. Consequences.

Why RMS was actually lynched. 


I think you misunderstood my words: I'm not a RMS fanboy and I'd have to ask you to not project the issues of the tech culture of #US over me: I'm from #Italy and I'm very good at dealing with my emotions! 😉

But my analysis of what happened is just political.

Let's break your arguments into three blocks:

1. lynching is killing
2. it's lynching only if the victim is without fault
3. it's lynching only if it's the action of a powerful group

Let my now debunk each of these arguments.


As I said it's not a physical lynching as the people who joined the mob were way more cowards than the cowards of KKK.

It was a cybernetic lynching.


As for what #RMS actually did, he wrote a mail to a mailing list expressing his own opinion on a matter. A careful read of that mail shows that all the outrage that followed was misdirected: of all the disgusting opinions of RMS over years, this is NOT the worst.

He didn't defended Epstein or rape or anything like that.

Yet, I don't think that the consequences of something RMS (or me, or you, or anybody else) wrote should be a public international cybernetic lynching.

If you say that RMS deserved it anyway, you are just negating him universal human rights. In particular article 18, 19 and 12.
I guess that if he was from any of the minorities that fill US people remorse (women, people of color, lgbt+ and so on), you would never argue that one of them deserve to be lynched for what they said! You would say (correctly) that they deserve a due process IF they did any crime.

And indeed, if he did any crime, he should processed FOR IT (with all people who covered him), not lynched for something else.

Now, even if RMS is not a saint (and he is not), and even if RMS can be considered a powerful man he actually belong to an oppressed minority, just not one of the one people feel remorse for: he is a #hacker. His weirdness does not help #mainstream people to empathize with him, so that a pretty reasonable person like you might forget to consider he IS a human being with universal rights like any other.

And removing a weird #hacker from #FSF, weakened the position of many other weird hackers that, while completely different from RMS himself, are just as different from the mainstream.

And this led us to 3.

When something irrational and bad occurs in Italy, we are used to ask ourselves "cui prodest?", "who benefit from what happened?".

To whom RMS was a pain in the ass? Fine, to many. 🤣

But who had the #Power to mount an international lynching like this without the mob even realizing they were violation the universal human rights of RMS?

All bound to #OpenSource, they need to get rid of #FreeSoftware.

And do you know what is funny?

Those naive (dumb?) heroes (cowards?) that joined the mob with their digital forks and pitches, will never accept of being naive cowards and they will try as hard as possible to rationalize and morally justify what happened.

"Because he deserved it!" I can hear you.

Guess what? He didn't.
Not for THAT mail.
Nor for any crime he did, because he deserve jail, if he did any crime.

But RMS is an easy prey.
He is weird, after all.
And US passion for #inclusiveness doesn't include hackers.

If you were in the mob, please, open your eyes.

Why RMS was actually lynched. 

@Shamar If you think removal of RMS was about the MIT email, you don't understand his history/"legacy" of abuse. People including the FSF board have been trying to get him to step down for a long long time.

Why RMS was actually lynched. 


Yeah I don't understand.

If he has a history/legacy of abuse, people around him have a history/legacy of complicity in such abuses.

Each time they didn't denounce his abuses, they enabled each of the following ones.

So why I should feel better that the #FSF is now in the hands of such hypocrite abuse-enablers?

If these people were aware of crimes they didn't denounce they should be all processed as accomplices.

They should turn themselves in to the police, right NOW.
No kidding.

But if they don't, I have to deduce they are worse than #Stallman, either as enablers or as liars.

Why RMS was actually lynched. 

@Shamar As I & many have pointed out, people have been denouncing his behavior for years, and trying to get him removed from his positions of trust and leadership. RMS deliberately designed FSF/GNU as a dictatorship to preserve his power.

Again, you don't seem to grasp the differences between criminal law and betrayal of public trust.

I"m done attempting to interact with you until you get your head out of the sand and learn some basics about how leadership works.


If you want to retreat I'm fine with it. 😉

But I don't see how exactly #RMS would have betrayed public trust.

Surely, many want to remove him since years because he is way harder to manipulate through social networks than a lynching mob. I guess that many at #GAFAM are high fiveing right now.

But if I ask you "what did he do exactly?" and you retreat instead of answering the question, you show pretty well how thin are his allegations.

Did Stallman tried to spread proprietary software? Not to my knowledge!

So how exactly did he betrayed #FreeSoftware?

He resisted to #OpenSource's #conformism that want to manage high skilled volunteers like if they were employed at an #US based corporation!

You are failing to see (or pretending to) that #GNU and Free Software are international movements and US corps have no right to impose their workplace hypocrisy.

So what?
This isn't a rethorical question.
Can you answer with precise allegations that are not crimes?


@Shamar @dthompson @cwebber
"Not being a criminal" is not sufficient criteria for continuing to lead a project of such importance.

He sucks at leading, so he shouldn't lead. Simple as that.

No one even said he should be censored.



Leading people means helping them move from a point to another.

Like it or not, but #RMS proved a great leadership in #FreeSoftware: he didn't just give it a definition and an identity, but turned it in a powerful and positive political movement. He was being so.successful that #OpenSource was created to embrace, extend and estinguish such movement.

Thank to #OSS we now have #SaaSS, browsers that are more complex to #hack than operating systems and the four #freedoms have been reduced to privileges.

However #Stallman intransigence was still a pain in the ass for many people who want to finally absorb free software in open source.

Without Stallman at #FSF, #GAFAM are way stronger. Now THEY will lead!

Will #Google be creepy with women?

Does Google care about women?
Sure! They are valuable data cow to milk! Great workers! And useful conumers! Just like men.

Same for #Microsoft, #Facebook and friends! They will be great leaders, if you want to be led where they want to milk you.

But I'm a weird #hacker. I prefer weird leaders. Because their weirdness protects mine. And yours.

Don't forget my words: nobody will fight for hackers' freedom. The gentrification process is running fast. First #Linus, now RMS... the next might be you!

@dthompson @cwebber


@Shamar @dthompson @cwebber
He did those things what, 20 years ago?
And if a free software project can't even be nice to women, it doesn't deserve to exist.



You seem to assume that Politics is easier than Programming.

It's not.

Programming is way more funny.
And way less frustrating.
And I say this having experience of doing both, either separately or at the same time.

I don't know if #RMS code at all today, but he never stopped fighting for (his vision of) #FreeSoftware.

And despite the fact that I don't entirely agree with him on such vision, I call bullshit when people say he did nothing for #FS in the last 20 or 30 years.

He did a huge lot.

But it you only measure work in term of SLOCs/hour because you internalized the corporate perspective of #OpenSource productivity, obviously all his work is worth nothing.

But beware, people who adopt such perspective are going to be exploited.

If all it matters to you is X (with X being any easy to measure scalar, such as $, €, SLOC/hour or whatever), you stop being an hacker, a user or even just a citizen and you become a #robot, a #slave that can be easily #used through software.

@dthompson @cwebber


@Shamar @dthompson @cwebber
Since he is responsible for the negative image people associate with GNU, I'd say that it may have been better if he did less in the last 20 years.


What exactly do you mean by "negative image of GNU"?

Are you talking about the lack of overall technical vision about the #GNU system or about something else?

@dthompson @cwebber

if a free software project can't even be nice to women, it doesn't deserve to exist 


If a free software project has any aspect you don't like, it deserve to be forked.

#hackers welcome any #fork.

Only #OpenSource people who cry of community breaks and such bullshit. After all forks reduce their #market share!

As for women, trust me: I care A LOT about them. I have three daughters I love most, and I always carefully consider what is good for them, in the present and in the future.

Is a homogenous world were all people talk the same good for them? Would it be safer?

The answer is simply No.

In Italy we have had a history of private abuses easily mixed with public #hypocrisy to cover them.

In a world were people cannot TALK about something, such thing do not disappear. It just become invisible and more dangerous. Public #moralism just raise the stakes for powerful people, but it doesn't fix any perversion.

Since I want to effectively protect my daughters, I want a world where people with the weirdest opinions can discuss them while criminal like #Epstein are rapidly and easily denounced.

Don't judge books by their cover: a project (or a man, or a woman or a company or..) might LOOK nice to a woman while being creepy and dangerous. And the converse can also be true.

I prefer places that are dangerous and look dangerous too.
They are LESS dangerous.

But censorship and mob lynching of opinion won't make things better.

@dthompson @cwebber

@cwebber sorry, but the dick move is spreading lies, and what's been done to Stallman in name of virtue signalling.

Stallman did not defend Epstein, who he called a serial rapist, but someone who was his *dead* friend, whom the court did not find guilty.


@RuiSeabra @cwebber No one here is claiming Stallman defended Epstein, nor that this latest incident was an isolated incident.


@aidalgol @cwebber it certainly was a well crafted hit job, the way they select certain phrases from his ancient posts without providing the context or the next couple of phrases, painting an image that people who don't know him well might believe. 5* for craft work.


@aidalgol @cwebber be sure to let everyone know where Stallman "defended sexual harassers". Of course it might not be libel if you're talking about a dead man, but take notice that no court found him guilty of anything. The trick here is letting people presume he actually defended a sexual harasser like Epstein, but it's your choice: You either believe in the justice system or the lynch mob. Assume your choices.


@aidalgol @cwebber I've gotten to know him well enough, hosted him several times, I can distinguish his particular "sense"of humour, I know most people don't understand it. But to carefully select phrases without the proper context and manipulating people into believing a completely fabricated opinion... That's just brilliant.

It's strange to hear that maintainers of free software projects could be simply "appointed" like this, and regardless of the fact that it is (allegedly) RMS, it sounds strange in itself and shows there is a problem. What does it mean in practice? Commit access?

If Mark "appointed" himself, that is even more strange.

I thought it was the sole responsibility of the current maintainers.

@cwebber gee, it's like there are reasons besides the Epstein commentary to get him out of there

Great, another thing I have to never use because it has RMS's stank on it.


I’m reminded of a talk I saw (on video) some years back by the maintainers of subversion back when it was dominant. The gist was that the community was the important part of a FOSS project and needed to be protected. Part of that was kicking out troublesome members. Interestingly, project founders are often in this category.

Anyway, if the current (former?) co-maintainers forked the code, I’m betting the community would follow them.

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