----- Original Message -----
From: "Jason L Tibbitts III" <tibbs(a)math.uh.edu>
To: "Anne Mulhern" <amulhern(a)redhat.com>
Cc: "Discussion of RPM packaging standards and practices for Fedora"
Sent: Thursday, June 9, 2016 6:22:34 PM
Subject: [Fedora-packaging] Re: Does FPC have any policy about packaging when the
upstream have chosen a deliberately
offensive name for their application/library?
>>>>> "AM" == Anne Mulhern <amulhern(a)redhat.com> writes:
AM> Notice that all instances of fuck that show up are at least somewhat
AM> appropriate to the app or library, and have little to do with the
AM> core obscene meaning of the word.
I've long since accepted that it is pointless to try and make such
rational distinctions, since offense is in the mind of the offended.
When I'm walking down the street and someone yells "faggot" at me,
as does occasionally happen, the offense is in _their_ mind, not mine.
_They_ _mean_ it to be an insult, I'm just bored by their stupidity,
momentarily depressed by the general unpleasantness of the world,
and rendered somewhat wary, since now somebody might actually attack me.
If someone is crying "You have a package with fuck in the name;
family friendly" then there isn't much point in arguing over shades of
meaning of the word fuck or the context surrounding its meaning.
A package with "fuck" in the name _isn't_ "family friendly" in the
meaning of that phrase. But sometimes,
when I observe somebody holding a kid, while talking into a cell-phone,
and every third word is "fuck", I expect that it'll be the first word
that 50% of all children in the US learn to say in just a few more years.
Certainly it must be the one that many hear the most often.
AM> (Wikipedia tells me that Beaner/Beano is an offensive name for
AM> Hispanic person.)
It's an extremely mild and somewhat comical slur. And "Beano" is also
the brand name for a very common (in the USA) preparation of an enzyme
which is used to reduce gas in the digestive tract. So there's hilarity
I'm sorry I picked an easy one. I just quickly scanned wikipedia for
ethnic slurs that happened to start with "b" so I could prepend "li"
it. I'm sure I could have come up with something a whole lot less easy
to dismiss if I'd tried.
AM> The question assumes that the upstream had deliberately chosen
AM> name for this meaning, that it wasn't an accidental match, as in
AM> debugger or manuscript.
If you have an upstream which does such a thing, what are the chances
that the software they're producing is actually useful? If it's useful,
it should stand on its merits and not the name. And if it's just crap,
then there probably isn't much point in adding it to the distribution.
I would assume that any such software would tend towards the 'crap' end
of the spectrum, but it's an infinite universe....
There's a lot of not super high quality software packaged for Fedora.
And just because a person is talented doesn't mean they are also
a thoroughly decent, kind, person. Take Evelyn Waugh, for example.
It follows pretty easily that a person might write quality software
and attach a name that they absolutely meant to be cruel, possibly partly
to demonstrate that they could get away with it.
Also note that in order for such a thing to make it into the
distrubution, at least two people must agree on its relevance. The
person who submits the package, the person who reviews the package, and
perhaps the person who processes the SCM request (who doesn't always
look, though when process things I almost always read the package
In any case, if there's a specific instance of something which you
believe to be worth including in Fedora but which has a name that might
cause offense, feel free to name it so the community can discuss it.
Otherwise this a lot of typing for a hypothetical.
I have a slightly different problem. I was looking for a package to
do a review swap with, and I found a new package with a lame sexist name.
I couldn't at first figure out why, since the upstream link didn't have
that name, but AFAICT, that is the name of the actual library.
The upstream link refers to a related library. I don't know if the
library is actually useful or not, but it is perfectly possible
that it is at least as useful as many other libraries already
packaged for Fedora. I've made myself the reviewer, and will put the
issues that seem to me to arise from this unfortunate situation on the
agenda for the next FPC meeting.
Note that Fedora does have restrictions on "offensive"
I believe they are somewhat misguided, but they've existed since the
earliest days of the project, probably to avoid flamewars. See
packaging mailing list
I hope that works.