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Re: Bug#391717: [Pkg-shadow-devel] Bug#391717: gender in /etc/passwd

> Well, there are some constructions (even in English, although much less common)
> that can only be made with assumption on the user's gender.  For example in
> Catalan (and probably most latin languages) you can't ask "Are you sure you want
> to xxxxx?" (a pretty common question in computing) without assuming the user is
> male or female.  Usualy the former is assumed, but I find this a bit
> disrespectful, specialy since making debian more friendly to the female public

This is a problem for nearly all languages. And the common solution is
usually to try finding constructions that do not lead to the
problem. Most often that involves neutral wording which is, by chance,
what I would recommend in most cases (scientific culture: Thou Shalt
never use first person ; Thou Shalt never address Thy reader).

The D-W project members will certainly agree that using gender-neutral
wording and more generally being gender-neutral is something that I
personnally try to do as much as I can and everywhere I can. But, here
again, I don't see much interesting value added to this GECOS field
for that matter.

Some other D-W members will also remember the reactions when I did
propose a gender field in.....the Debian developers database....:)

> Is kloczek@pld.org.pl the right upstream contact address?  I sent the same
> request to him roughly a month ago, but received no response (not sure if due to
> lack of interest, time, or just mail breakage).

Tomasz (shadow upstream, yes) has been very busy last weeks. I'm not
sure he got very interested by the topic anyway....

He's CC'ed but, indeed, being subscribed to the Debian maintainers
mailing list which gets the shadow Debian package bug reports, he
alreay gets all our bug reports.

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