Re: Proposal: Replace all references to master/slave in GNOME modules

Am Sa., 27. Apr. 2019 um 01:09 Uhr schrieb Michael Gratton <mike vee net>:

On Fri, Apr 26, 2019 at 20:33, Ask Hjorth Larsen via desktop-devel-list
<desktop-devel-list gnome org> wrote:

0) It is problematic to work with hundreds of projects when they do
not use the same branch name (translators like myself), but this time
we want to make it consistent, so ...

Hence this is proposing to make the change project-wide.

1) Changing branch name for all the projects in GNOME will take time,
some projects might lack maintainers and so on.  Many people are
involved.  It won't become consistent easily, and meanwhile we only
lose time.  I.e.: See point 0).

When we decide to do this, it will be effectively instantaneous. A
shell script on the server will be able to create the new branch,
replace the old branch with a symbolic reference for backwards
compatibility, and update Gitlab.

So you say.  Here's an old saying: If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

People with existing checkouts can continue working as-is. When they
next fetch a repo, the new branch name will be downloaded, which they
can start switching to as time and headspace permits.

Right, let's not do that.

This is only an issue because you *make* it an issue, now.  On paper
it sounds like you're doing something by taking a stance against
slavery.  But in actual real life, changing master to mainline won't
make anyone's life better.  What you are doing is like putting likes
on Facebook - it feels like you are doing your part but no.  The git
master branch is not an endorsement or implication of slavery, because
the people involved didn't and don't have that intention.  When they
wrote git the name was fine, and many of those were probably native
English speakers and would have known if there were an issue.  But now
all of a sudden somebody on the internet 'discovered' otherwise.

Indeed since the word master has so many meanings, just leave the
offensive one to die out by itself, forgotten, like it deserves.
"Don't think about apples."  See what I mean?  "Vaccines cause autism"
- same principle, it's based on implanting wrong ideas.  It is
actually prescriptivists like yourself who are causing other people to
connect the word 'master' to slavery even in contexts where this is
completely irrelevant and uncalled for, thus creating your own evil
strawman to beat down in the name of justice.  Don't do that.

2) Tomorrow some other word will fall out of grace and we will again
have to take care not to offend anyone at any price.

This is the slippery slope argument, and as has been pointed out
several times already on this thread is invalid.

Au contraire, all that goes for your argument.

"Link" - implies chain, a potent symbol of slavery.  Must we now
change 'link' to 'reference' everywhere?

"GNOME" - might be offensive to people who are insecure about their height.

Do you see the problem here?  These examples are plentiful and hardly
any less reasonable than yours.  "It might offend someone" cannot be a
driver for changing arbitrary things, and GNOME should not be a
playground for some grand social experiment, least of all the

3) This only happens because we are touching on US sensibilities.

This is simply false. As an Australian, I would support replacing terms

I think it is quite true though.  This is like a meme going around,
formed by an opinion bubble with sentiments about its past in an
English-speaking country.  Meanwhile the other suggestion I mentioned
(about the GNOME logo) did not have enough backing on the internet to
form a bubble.  Nobody identified much with that idea because it
wasn't mainstream enough.

that carry strong negative connotations for the first peoples here,
likewise for Armenian people, or Rohingya people, or any others who
have been or are being persecuted.

This sounds beautiful, but mindless prescriptivism like this won't
help any of the peoples you mention.  Want to help?  Donate money
where it matters.  Vote for someone good.  Avoid buying smartphones
produced in sweatshops - that actually reduces real-life slavery.  You
know, /real/ things.

Best regards


⊨ Michael Gratton, Percept Wrangler.
⚙ <>

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