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Why does Debian Care about the FSF

>>>>> "Roberto" == Roberto C Sánchez <roberto@debian.org> writes:
    Roberto> Did Richard Stallman make an application to become a Debian
    Roberto> Maintainer or Debian Developer?  It is not clear how
    Roberto> Richard Stallman is "included" in Debian in such a way that
    Roberto> it would even make sense to move to exclude him.

Debian works with (or at least has worked with) the FSF in the past.
We've invited people speaking in official FSF roles to our conferences.
We've had people interact with them in their events and when working on
maintaining their software and other things.

Many of us believe the FSF is not creating a safe, welcoming space.
We believe that they are making a strong statement by allowing rms to be
on their board , and we hear that statement as inconsistent with
creating a safe, welcoming, respectful space.

How does this impact Debian.

Imagine I'm mentoring someone and they find a bug in an FSF project.
If it was a bug in a project with an upstream  that created a safe
environment, I'd probably as a mentor encourage someone to submit the
bug upstream.

With the FSF or another project that I don't think will respect my
mentee, I'm going to focus more on that than getting the bug fixed.

There are thousands of other cases where this sort of trade off happens.
One of the big ones is the overall perception of the free software
Because the FSF enjoyed such a prominent position in the community, when
they stumble, at least now, it brigs us all down.
People experience the FSF and paint all of us with that brush to a
greater or lesser degree.
And they should.
If the larger community doesn't police the organizations that make it
up, people should take that into account when they decide whether to
associate with us.

We are debating whether the FSF has done something strong enough that
Debian as a whole should ask the FSF to fix it and distance itself from
the FSF until they do.
It's appropriate for Debian to consider that as a project because at
least one side argues that being closely associated with the FSF is
inconsistent at this time with goals Debian has adopted as a project.

I think Debian should distance itself.  You may disagree.
But I hope you can see from my viewpoint why it's a reasonable question
for Debian as a project to answer.
Obviously if you view things differently, you can vote your conscience.

    >> Labor rights are entirely different from "freedom of
    >> association".
    Roberto> Got it.  We can discriminate, but they can't.  Seems a
    Roberto> touch irrational.

Oh, come on, you can do better than that.
I'll admit that Steve is being a bit simplistic and viewing things with
a bit more black and white than I like.
But try this on.

Freedom of association, freedom of speech, labor rights, all that are
*complex* and *intertwined*.
Take the union example.
In my country, employers generally can fire someone for whatever reason.
There are a few reasons (working with a union being one of them in parts
of the country) where firing someone (or not hiring them) is not

Debian generally has fairly protected speech (in my country at least)
when the project chooses to make statements.  That is, there are few
reasons the government can come along and shut Debian's speech down.
There are some though.

Debian (at least in the countries of many participants here) is able to
limit the speech of people within Debian channels like this mailing list
and our conferences, website, and distribution.
There mopey be  some ways in which we could limit speech that might
be problematic in terms of our non-profit status.
There may be some forms of speech we could permit that would be
But for the most part we can police our community as we like.

In general many of us prefer to be generally open.
We've decided though that creating an inclusive, welcoming, respectful
community is more important than openness.
That is not a violation of freedom of speech.

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