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Re: sarge and software patents

On Fri, Jul 01, 2005 at 08:21:33AM -0500, Kent West wrote:
> Geoff Thurman wrote:
> >But isn't he right, at the end of the day, to be concerned about
> >software patents?
> >
> Yes.
> >And I would have thought this list was exactly the
> >right place for a discussion of these issues.
> >
> Not so much, no. A better place would be debian-legal
> (http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal/).
> > Why is it not?
> >  
> >
> Because this list is for "Support for Debian users who speak English"
> (http://lists.debian.org/debian-user/). Political issues are not really
> support issues.
> The general consensus has been that short-lived off-topic threads are
> acceptable as long as they don't stray too far from the interests of the
> list members (and they should be marked "OT" in the subject line).
> Guillaume's original posting was probably considered by most members as
> perfectly acceptable, even raising our conciousness of the issue. But
> when no one responded, he went semi-ballistic, and now the whole thread
> has just become, for lack of a better term, "trollish". His lack of
> grammar/spelling didn't help (see recent "Hackers, Spelling, and
> Grammar?" link on Slashdot
> (http://ask.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/06/30/1532238&tid=215&tid=4)
> for relevant discussion)).
> Again, the occasional off-topic side discussion about software patents
> is probably perfectly acceptable on this list (although it more better
> belongs on debian-legal), Guillaume just needs to learn "how to win
> friends and influence people" rather than bullying them into his way of
> thinking.

Okay, I see what you mean. The only point I would quibble with was the
reference to grammar/spelling: on this list I tend to ignore such
things, especially when the name suggests that English is not the
first language. I must confess I have no former knowledge of Guillaume
Tessier, I don't know whether I'm alone in that. I've had a quick
look at the first few parts of that Slashdot link - it looks
interesting, but too long to look at tonight.

Incidentally, if I seemed to be condoning bad language on the list this
is not what I meant to do, exactly. It isn't that I think bad language
is somehow okay, more that I am so angered by what I perceive to be
going on all around us that I fear swearing should be the least of our
worries. I confess to being prone to the occasional swearword myself
(not openly on list), which probably clouds my judgement. But swearing
on this list is not okay and I didn't mean to imply that it was.

Thank you Kent, and also Adam, for your measured and informative



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