Re: Claiming the "debian" account on GitHub ? [and 1 more messages]
Stefano Zacchiroli writes ("Re: Claiming the "debian" account on GitHub ?"):
> (And please, do not fall into the trap "they offer the service for free,
> we should be nice"; we're experienced enough to know that those who
> offer service for free often gain something out of it. That is entirely
> normal. But we should not ignore that fact and use that ignorance as a
> reason to censor our criticism.)
I think we have a responsbility to behave reasonably and fairly to
everyone in our dealings with them, as well as of course our
responsibility to uphold our values.
In this case I don't think using Github's favour to us - giving us the
Debian account name - to publicise links to Github's competitors, is
behaving reasonably and fairly. It's a fairly obvious and basic
violation of reciprocity.
Personally I thought Charles' statement in the README on Github was
excellent. But if it's not acceptable and our principles require that
we would need something stronger, the only correct course is not to
accept the favour from Github.
Or to put it another way, the need to follow our free software
principles does not relieve us of the need to be fair in our dealings
and particularly not to stab someone in the back when they have done
us what they think of as a favour.
If the obligations (not just the explicit formal rules, but commonly
understood and implied social principles) that come with a favour of
this kind would require us to violate our principles, then we should
not accept the favour.
So I think Charles came to entirely the right conclusion. I wish we
could have had longer to talk about this but I guess it's done now.