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Re: Diversity statement for the Debian Project

On Sat, Mar 24, 2012 at 09:49:34AM +1100, Ben Finney wrote:
> gregor herrmann <gregoa@debian.org> writes:
> > On Fri, 23 Mar 2012 20:38:39 +0100, Enrico Zini wrote:
> >
> > > I can think of another thing that we care about, which I don't see
> > > mentioned here: "We expect people to be constructive members of the
> > > community."
> >
> > Agreed.
> >
> > And I think we are also not open to people who don't share these
> > values, e.g. people with a racist, sexist, ... behaviour.
> That gets to another troubling part of the draft: Are there not some
> political opinions, even some religions, that we should discriminate
> against as being detrimental to the goal of a universal operating
> system?
> -- 
>  \      “Compulsory unification of opinion achieves only the unanimity |
>   `\        of the graveyard.” —Justice Roberts in 319 U.S. 624 (1943) |
> _o__)                                                                  |
> Ben Finney

It's difficult. We don't censor our mailing lists: we don't often throw
people out. We are very accepting.

This si the argument that comes up so very regularly when we get people from
outside the project saying "Remove my name/post because I did something silly 
a long time ago" - it's a bit late, and all you do is draw further attention 
to yourself - it's archived everywhere.

We don't tolerate extreme sexist/racist behaviour - but we will accept 
many forms of intolerant/difficult behaviour on our mailing lists. 
People do begin to understand the culture after a while and most people
work together well. In fact, Debian is a textbook example of a self-organising
society - most of us hang around here because we want to and we value Debian
the operating system and Debian the Project/society/internet grouping.

It happens that we've got LGBT, many racial backgrounds, both biological sexes, all gender identities,
people from many language backgrounds, people with disabilities, people of all religious beliefs 
and people who have none (should I need a pastor who is also a sysadmin, I know exactly
who to turn to, for example), people who live in all environments up to and including the ultra 
self-sufficient types living remotely and off-grid.

About the only political stance we've taken was a very long time ago: posts from a Finnish neo-Nazi
weere removed as a) culturally inappropriate, b) essentially entirely irrelevant to Debian and 
c) inappropriate for certain European and other countries where Nazi propaganda is illegal.

Debian _sounds_ diverse and is diverse: novice users may be significantly put off by perceived technical
difficulty, novice maintainers/developers/formally recognised contributors are usually Debian users
with some degree of experience - but we all contribute in some way.

Don't get too hung up on the statement provided that it's fairly reflective of the fact that the
project seeks to be inclusive and to support the OS which is largely culture-neutral.

Just my 0.2c


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