The Stallman wars
So, 2021 isn't bad enough yet, but don't despair, people are working to fix that:
Welcome to the Stallman wars
Team Cancel: https://rms-open-letter.github.io/ (repo)
Team Support: https://rms-support-letter.github.io/ (repo)
Current Final stats are:
Team Cancel: 3019 signers from 1415 individual commit authors Team Support: 6853 signers from 5418 individual commit authors
Git shortlog (Top 10):
rms_cancel.git (Last update: 2021-08-16 00:11:15 (UTC)) 1230 Neil McGovern 251 Joan Touzet 99 Elana Hashman 73 Molly de Blanc 36 Shauna 19 Juke 18 Stefano Zacchiroli 17 Alexey Mirages 16 Devin Halladay 14 Nader Jafari rms_support.git (Last update: 2021-09-29 07:14:39 (UTC)) 1821 shenlebantongying 1585 nukeop 1560 Ivanq 1057 Victor 880 Job Bautista 123 nekonee 101 Victor Gridnevsky 41 Patrick Spek 25 Borys Kabakov 17 KIM Taeyeob
(data as of 2021-10-01)
Signers are counted from their "Signed / Individuals" sections. Commits are counted with
git shortlog -s.
Team Cancel also has organizational signatures with Mozilla, Suse and X.Org being among the notable signatories. The 16 original signers of the Cancel petition are added in their count. Neil McGovern, Juke and shenlebantongying need
.mailmap support as they have committed with different names.
- An introductory Ars Technica article in case you wonder what this is all about.
- Debian vote mailing-list: March 2021, April 2021
- NYT Magazine on the history of cancel culture
- Ed Santos' commentary and analysis
12.04.2021 statements from the accused:
18.04.2021 Debian General Resolution
The Debian General Resolution (GR) vote of the developers has concluded to not issue a public statement at all, see https://www.debian.org/vote/2021/vote_002#outcome for the results.
It is better to keep quiet and seem ignorant than to speak up and remove all doubt.
See Quote Investigator for the many people that rephrased these words over the centuries. They still need to be recalled more often as too many people in the FLOSS community have forgotten about that wisdom...
01.10.2021 Final stats
It seems enough dust has settled on this unfortunate episode of mob activity now. Hence I stopped the cronjob that updated the stats above regularly. Team Support has kept adding signature all the time while Team Cancel gave up very soon after the FSF decided to stand with Mr. Stallman. So this battle was decided within two months. The stamina of the accused and determined support from some dissenting web devs trumped the orchestrated outrage of well known community figures and their publicity power this time. But history teaches us that does not mean the war is over. There will a the next opportunity to call for arms. And people will call. Unfortunately.
Display comments as Linear | Threaded
Jonathan on :
So Neil McGovern has clicked the “merge PR” button a load more times than anyone else. What use is this figure?
Daniel Lange on :
This is just data.
I'll come up with analysis once this is all over. I will not fuel either side. I much prefer peace over war.
shenlebantongying on :
My name is not "slb Prime", I update my GitHub profile. Will it show a different name "shenlebantongying" Can you update it?
Daniel Lange on :
Sure, done. I extended the
.mailmapsupport to both repos now. Thanks for the nudge!
shenlebantongying on :
Since this page got cited and can be searched via Google, I just want to inject some of my person opinion for a moment for random visitors or future internet historian:
It's not coincident that the top a few people on
rms_support.gitare all nobodies. Due to high political rightness pressure, one with big titles just cannot easily involve in such an affair. In contrast, we really have nothing to lose for this political issue (My professional doesn't relate to IT at all ) .
Someone just has to do it to resist the impact of the open letter. I wouldn't say the support letter is our contribution, since if we don't do it, someone else would do it.
History is interesting. It forces people to react passively, and at the same time people also push the history forward. Yes, in my view, we are just a few random internet people who accidentally involved by the wheel of a series of events.
Who would have thought Epstein's crime would make us friends?
Some of our signers think we win this little battle. However, I personally think we just don't lose, rather than win. RMS got removed or not, the community is already divided which may require years to heal. However, I also think the overall outcome of this event is positive, since the message of free software movement passed to the whole earth (as the support letter translated to 32 languages). This might be the biggest "advertisement" campaign for FSF/GNU in many years. A lot of people realized that free software movement need them, and they can do things to improve it. Besides, many outsiders for the first time heard the word "Free/Libra Software".