Re: General resolution: ratify https://github.com/rms-open-letter/rms-open-letter.github.io
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On 26/03/21 12:47 am, Russ Allbery wrote:
> Sruthi Chandran <email@example.com> writes:
>> I have an alternate suggestion. Instead of signing the said letter,
>> Debian can issue a position statement similar to the one released by FSF
>> Europe. 
>> Will share the amended text if this idea has supporters.
>>  https://fsfe.org/news/2021/news-20210324-01.html
> I'm comfortable with Debian signing the original letter, but as an
> organizational statement, I think I like this one somewhat better. I
> think an organization should try to express what that organization itself
> is going to do, and this seems clearer on that point. (Personal
> statements are a bit different.)
> The EFF statement is also worth reviewing:
> but I think Debian's relationship with the FSF is closer to that of FSFE
> than the EFF, so their statement feels a bit more on point for us.
> Thank you for raising this, Sruthi! I hadn't seen the FSFE's statement
> before your message.
I propose that instead of signing the said letter, Debian issue a
position statement. The text of the statement is adapted from the
statements by FSFE and EFF.
==== Text of GR ====
Release a position statement with the following text.
*Debian’s statement on Richard Stallman rejoining the FSF board*
We at Debian are profoundly disappointed to hear of the re-election of
Richard Stallman to a leadership position at the Free Software
Foundation, after a series of serious accusations of misconduct led to
his resignation as president and board member of the FSF in 2019. We are
also disappointed that this was done despite no discernible steps taken
by him to be accountable for, much less make amends for, his past
actions or those who have been harmed by them. Finally, we are also
disturbed by the secretive process of his re-election, and how it was
belately conveyed  to FSF’s staff and supporters.
We believe this step and how it was communicated sends wrong and hurtful
message and harms the future of the Free Software movement. The goal of
the software freedom movement is to empower all people to control
technology and thereby create a better society for everyone. Free
Software is meant to serve everyone regardless of their age, ability or
disability, gender identity, sex, ethnicity, nationality, religion or
sexual orientation. This requires an inclusive and diverse environment
that welcomes all contributors equally. Debian realises that we
ourselves and the Free Software movement still have to work hard to be
in that place where everyone feels safe and respected to participate in
it in order to fulfil the movement's mission.
One crucial factor in making our community more inclusive is to
recognise and reflect when other people are offended or harmed by our
own actions and consider this feedback in future actions. The way
Richard Stallman announced his return to the board unfortunately lacks
any acknowledgement of this kind of thought process, and we are deeply
disappointed that the FSF board did not address these concerns before
electing him a board member again. Overall, we feel the current step
sends the wrong signal to existing and future community members.
That is why, we call for his resignation from all FSF bodies. The FSF
needs to seriously reflect on this decision as well as their
decision-making process to prevent similar issues from happening again.
Therefore, in the current situation we see ourselves unable to
collaborate both with the FSF and any other organisation in which
Richard Stallman has a leading position. Instead, we will continue to
work with groups and individuals who foster diversity and equality in
the Free Software movement in order to achieve our joint goal of
empowering all users to control technology.
==== End Text of GR ====
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