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As usual, @brainwane's writing on a complicated topic are clear, thoughtful, direct, and bring the receipts to the table: "Not The First Time We Tried (FSF, GNU, RMS, etc.)" harihareswara.net/sumana/2021/

@cwebber
It's the thing that gets me with the support for RMS, You can point at this, and Bradley's and Matthew's posts and some folks will see it as a corporate conspiracy leading a mob. Rather than wonder if the environment drove people elsewhere. Nearly a week later and I'm still stunned at it happening and the way it was handled. If the FSF can't change then we need to move on.
@brainwane

@onepict @cwebber @brainwane The open letter made it a lot easier to defend Stallman. If it was about the issues mentioned in this blog post, there would be a lot less resistance. Instead, they accuse Stallman of having "shown himself to be misogynist, ableist, and transphobic, ...", and petition for his removal based on "his hurtful and dangerous ideology". But there's sparse public evidence for these accusations, and in at least one case, his supposed transphobia, there's ample evidence of the contrary. People will interpret these inaccuracies as character assassination and discredit any genuine issues with him based on these.

@acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane Have you read this post? arp242.net/rms.html

It acknowledges there have been some mischaracterizations, analyzes them one by one, but still clearly identifies what *did* happen and comes to a conclusion about this decision to surprise-reappoint him and how it was clearly a bad idea.

@cwebber
It's an interesting article, I think we also have to consider the considerable frustration that open letter comes from. It's from years of RMS being enabled. I don't think comparisons to be autistic are helpful either. But that's because I have family who were diagnosed. I see this as years of his behaviour being excused, and when people tried to explain it to him to help him change, he didn't take it on.
@acuteanniemay @brainwane

@cwebber @acuteanniemay @brainwane
So from the outside because he has done alot in the past, while he was doing it his other behaviour was handwaved. Doesn't matter how it's happened, people have been made to feel unsafe, and unwelcome. Which for an organisation that is meant to be moral and for freedom is unforgiveable.

@cwebber @acuteanniemay @brainwane
What we also need to consider is that abuse isn't just creeping on women, it's how you treat people around, including when people you find useful aren't looking. I feel RMS is a reflection of his times in the 80s. He's a reflection of our culture and it's attude to what could be considered the less important. Those who haven't coded so their contribution is worth zilch.

@cwebber @acuteanniemay @brainwane
The point of the FSF is to fight for humanitys user freedoms. That includes asking someone who is unwilling to learn to change to not be around us. Because if he doesn't go, some folks will leave and we lose their contributions to furthering Free Software. You need the bridge to the outside world and our figureheads are our main bridge. We have to hold them to a higher account.

@onepict @acuteanniemay @brainwane I agree with everything you've said. The letter spoke in simplified and direct language, which can be valuable, and clearly got a powerful response... I support that approach. But I also understand how many people need to hear a post that speaks to, and breaks down, the specifics. Which is why I linked the forementioned one. (I don't agree with everything in it, and I would have chosen a different title, but I'm glad it is there.)

@cwebber
Yeah I think some respectful discussion is good in this. In any debate if you are on the extreme opposite side there's a futher path to being willing to see the oppositions POV. Plus it also excludes those in the middle who either don't want to take a side, or can't afford to take a side.
@acuteanniemay @brainwane

@cwebber @onepict @brainwane If Stallman has to go, he should go because of what he did, and not because of the letter's fabrications. Regardless of the letter's goals, I its approach morally unacceptable and I am deeply saddened that so many prominent figures and organizations have given their name to it.
@cwebber @brainwane @onepict I meant to say that I presonally find its approach unacceptable, but somehow lost some words there.
@onepict @acuteanniemay @brainwane @cwebber Yeah especially that brief remsrk that we shouldn't have "someone like that" in leadership felt very uncomfortable.

@clacke
I think it's a tricky minefield, language is very tricky and when you have a community that is multilingual it gets harder. After a certain period of time and signatures the text was also fixed otherwise its not the letter that folks signed anymore. I can also understand why people would defend RMS with this. But people can modify their behaviour to make their community and folks around them feel safer. Linus Torvalds did. Our leaders lead by example.
@cwebber @acuteanniemay @brainwane

@clacke @cwebber @acuteanniemay @brainwane
But our leaders aren't gods and are only as good as the people around them are. It's why I say we have all been failed. RMS was failed decades ago by people willing and feeling they had to excuse his behaviour. This failure then rippled on to the rest of us, not just those feeling unsafe, but those emulating RMSs behaviour. We were failed and in turn failed each other. It's FLOSSs loss.

@be
Yes which is why the Open Source boob project came to mind. Plus some folk really don't understand the power dynamics of a leader in Free Software or back then, a wunderkind continually trying to pick up women. It's reducing us to base attraction. We aren't being seen as people, and it gets tiring batting away the continual attention. We know it's not for our brains.
@cwebber @acuteanniemay @brainwane

@cwebber @acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane

I think Stallman's behaviour can be characterized as misogyny, that's not excessive

When women publish reports about you, write on twitter they stayed away because of you, and you insist for 20 years, that means you don't give a damn what a category of people is saying

And that category of people is women

So no, sorry, social awkwardness doesn't cut it, here

there's not intent only. There are effects too

@cwebber @acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane

I didn't read about ableism because I have enough of this

As for transphobia, sorry but that's not just a preference about linguistic issues

If you insist on a solution that no one else will adopt, when the rest of the world has settled on they/them, you are transphobic

Posting about trans right is free, especially for a person like him

Doing something is not free and he wasn't ready to do something

So, no, sorry. He was transphobic

@AbbieNormal @cwebber @onepict @brainwane I don't see how it would be transphobic to use other gender neutral pronouns. I understand that it is silly, but I don't see why would it be hateful towards trans persons. I'm not trans so could you please explain so I can understand?

@acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

the solution for not misgendering people should be one only

using several different ways of using gender neutral pronouns will make the whole thing unusable, impractical, in many cases a joke for the amusememnt of many morons who refer to him as an example.

it's a substantial sabotage of the effort

your linguistic preferences are not ore important of the actual well being of people

@acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

I could say: I would use gender neutral pronouns but I link zoomba/zoorba only

That would be a cruel joke

@acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

His preference was just an excuse for not giving the trans community the desire of establishing a more bearable language

@acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

when the world has settled on they/them, your insistence for something else that nobody will use is an excuse for not using they/them and thus misgendering people

and you'll give the excuse to the hoardes of morons who will refer to you as an example

it's not a matter of linguistic style

it's a substantial issue

it's not that hard

@AbbieNormal @onepict @brainwane @cwebber Personally I use they/them, but I would prefer if there was separate singular and plural third (and second) person pronouns. Does that make me transphobic?

I don't think the accusation against Stallman is serious. He clearly supports the actual well being of trans people, which as you said is more important, his wacky language reform ideas seems harmless eccentricity compared to that.

@acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

yes, you are being transphobic

not only because of your linguistic preferences

but because you write that this is harmless

it's not

@acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

and the reason why it's not was clear even before you asked for clarification

you are trying to hijack the discussion

@AbbieNormal @onepict @brainwane @cwebber I am genuinely trying to understand why people think Stallman is transphobic despite his support of trans rights. I still don't see how a language reform meant to make life easier could be described as hateful.
@AbbieNormal @brainwane @cwebber @onepict In my native language we have separate gender plural and singular third and second person pronouns so that feels natural to me.
@be @AbbieNormal @onepict @brainwane @cwebber Stallman said that if someone asks to be referred by they/them you should respect that.

@be
It's as much a power play on his part as well. He wants you to know he will call you what he wants to. Which is abusive.
@acuteanniemay @brainwane @cwebber @AbbieNormal

@be @onepict @brainwane @cwebber @AbbieNormal I assumed that when it is a preferred pronoun it is no longer neutral because it refers to that person's gender in particular, but you might be right about it.

@AbbieNormal @acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber Would you accept that argumentation for any other topic?

“if you argue, you’re being <something horrible>”

@ArneBab @acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

the choice about how to accomodate the issue is not for cisgender people

you know this even too well

@AbbieNormal @acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber You forgot a verb. "is not for cisgender people to take" or "is not for cisgender people to discuss"?

The first demands decency: call people how they want to be called.

The second forbids people their voice.

@ArneBab @acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

are you really arguing that the adoption of a linguistic solution they don't like will harm cisgender people as much as transgender people are harmed by the current language ?

@ArneBab @acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

I'll paste something I've written already:

His preference was just an excuse for not giving the trans community the desire of establishing a more bearable language

@ArneBab @acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane @cwebber

this is not a linguistic issue

the point of arguing is not language. It's not giving trans people what they ask

your distinction between making a chice and discussing it is bogus

and crying that some freedom is being infringed is outright ridiculous

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@acuteanniemay @cwebber @brainwane @AbbieNormal @onepict The arrogant attitude "I solved your problem without consulting you, now accept my solution" by us computer people is exactly why we have bad IT systems and global ubiquitous services with bad social consequences.

There is an accepted solution, so it's even worse: Per/perse is the next-level-arrogant "I solved my problem with your solution without consulting you, now accept my solution".

He doesn't intend it as disrespectful, he just doesn't realize that it is. But in effect yes, it is transphobic even if he intends to and thinks he empathizes with trans people.

@clacke
To me where the abuse comes in, is that he said to at least one individual that he would not respect their partners pronouns. Folk have been talking to RMS behind the scenes for years. He's unwilling to change because of that arrogance. It also sends a message that his opinion matters over everyone else's. FLOSS to me is about collaboration and that includes listening to others and respecting their opinions and identity. Leaders need to be able to do that.
@AbbieNormal

@zleap
Well yes, it's been serious for a long time. Not just teachers, but pupils assaulting other pupils. In front of other pupils, it's an expression of power over someone else.

But the culture just handwaves the behaviour as boys will be boys. Just think about the type of person who does that and realise that some are adults now and have been for several decades.
@AbbieNormal @cwebber @acuteanniemay @brainwane

@onepict @AbbieNormal @cwebber @acuteanniemay @brainwane

While working at a school i had it the other way, kids shouting things like "fu**ing gayboy (multiple times, ) I was fobbed off 2with kids will be kids" and on another occasiion "Caretakers are fu**ing wan**ers" at me (or the caretaker I was with at the time), the latter resulted in said child being given suspension for a week, aka a week off school when told I said that is what he wants, so he won in some sense.

The problem is huge and has been getting worse

It is no wonder that people don't bother reporting stuff,

@zleap
It's just pointless sometimes. Which is why times like this we need to hold our leaders accountable for their actions and attitudes.
@AbbieNormal @cwebber @acuteanniemay @brainwane

@cwebber @acuteanniemay @onepict @brainwane That’s the first I read which says clearly that rms was not appointed back as president, only taken back into the board.

And it’s wrong about the GNU system (I have a GNU system VM running on Guix — GNU with Hurd instead of Linux). Fully Free Software is what I want.

Interesting is that quite some of the backlash against rms comes from the groups that are the strongest proponents of the all-must-be-free culture he established.

@normandc
Well there are other organisations, and people can choose which conferences to go to. The community was already split when RMS resigned and this situation has split it further. I think though it is along individual freedom over the commons. FLOSS changes as time goes on because new people and new ideas come in to build on the old ones. RMS developed the idea of free software because of the culture in the labs in the 70s. Who knows what comes next.
@cwebber @brainwane

@normandc @cwebber @brainwane
We can applaud the achievements of RMS, acknowledge how fundamental they are. We can also choose to build on those and be better. Help to build more inclusive communities and safer places for everyone.

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