Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 16th Dec 2009 00:13 UTC
Gnome In the item we ran yesterday about GNOME and the GNU Project, one aspect got snowed under a little bit. It turns out a claim made in the iTWire article about the role a blog post by Miguel De Icaza was false, and even though the claim wasn't ours, I did repeat it, and therefore, should correct it too. I also need to offer apologies for not framing the opening of the article clear enough - had I framed it better, a lot of pointless discussion and name-calling could've been avoided.
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RE[6]: It is all okay
by boldingd on Wed 16th Dec 2009 18:38 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: It is all okay"
boldingd
Member since:
2009-02-19

Last time I checked, FSF was not a "software vendor".


Fair enough: here, let me fix that.

Seriously. It's not like the FSF are any worse than any other stake-holder in the OS/License/Platform wars.


Equally, I could point out that "The Free Software Foundation (FSF) is the principal organizational sponsor of the GNU Project," or that gnu.org has a "join the FSF" link on their top-banner. I think I can say, with great confidence, that they are affiliated organizations, by any reasonable definition.

Last time I checked, FSF was not operating "private forum". But it sure was the association with GNU that provoked arguments that the Planet Gnome should be moderated and censored.


Oh, I was unaware that none of the private forums of the FSF or its affiliates -- no web forums, mailing lists, IRC channels or content portals -- where involved. Wait, how are we talking about FSF censorship if we're not talking about an FSF forum? What, where they somehow deleting content from OS News? Like, with their minds? Telepathically?

And, even if it's bastardly, it's not criminal or particularly unreasonable of them to ask an affiliate of theirs, for whom they are the "principal organizational sponsor," to restrict the presentation of views to which they are strongly opposed. They are an advocacy group, after all, and GNU comes down pretty strongly on the FSF's side. In more concrete terms, given that the GNU are strongly affiliated with the FSF, I think it's reasonable for the FSF to ask the GNU not to actively distribute and reproduce media generated by groups (or the affiliates of groups) to whom the FSF (and the GNU) are directly philosophically opposed!

Last time I checked people whose blogs are aggregated by Planet Gnome have right to express whatever opinions they wish.


And you would be incorrect about that -- well, partly. They have the right to post whatever they want on their blogs; they do not have the right to have Planet Gnome reproduce those posts. If Planet Gnome decides, as a matter of policy, not to aggregate blogs that espouse views with which they do not agree -- or fail to meet other standards -- it would not be a case of censorship. Or, specifically, it would be in no way criminal, and would not in any way constitute a violation of the right to free expression. Seriously.

Edit: I can't oppening tag

Edited 2009-12-16 18:39 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[7]: It is all okay
by strcpy on Wed 16th Dec 2009 18:40 in reply to "RE[6]: It is all okay"
strcpy Member since:
2009-05-20

Yes. You quite nicely summarized all that I fiercely oppose. No self-respecting open source / free software project should actively limit the free speech of its members.

(And just to recapitulate the context here: this is about limiting the free speech to disallow talking about so-called "proprietary software", which should be always presented as "immoral" or "unethical", as stated by the head honcho of FSF himself.)

If actions like these are required for Gnome to stay as a GNU project, these two should divorce immediately, the sooner the better.

Edited 2009-12-16 18:46 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[8]: It is all okay
by boldingd on Wed 16th Dec 2009 19:13 in reply to "RE[7]: It is all okay"
boldingd Member since:
2009-02-19

Yes. You quite nicely summarized all that I fiercely oppose. No self-respecting open source / free software project should actively limit the free speech of its members.

(And just to recapitulate the context here: this is about limiting the free speech to disallow talking about so-called "proprietary software", which should be always presented as "immoral" or "unethical", as stated by the head honcho of FSF himself.)

If actions like these are required for Gnome to stay as a GNU project, these two should divorce immediately, the sooner the better.


They don't limit speech by choosing not to reproduce speech. Really. Seriously. Free speech doesn't work that way.

But: I don't disagree with you about the situation, I was just trying to make two points:
1: Planet Gnome is (derivatively, indirectly) associated with an advocacy group, whose position they do not completely support, and
2: Accusing the FSF of censorship is inflammatory, an exaggeration, and melodramatic.

You're right that, if Planet Gnome, or the Gnome project in general, does not feel that they can adhere to the portions of the FSF's ideals that the GNU project endorses, they should separate themselves from the GNU and the FSF. Whether that's the case is a decision that the GNOME community has to make, and I don't really have a strong opinion on which way they should go.

Reply Parent Score: 3