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GNU means GNU's Not U: Stallman insists he's still Chief GNUisance while 18 maintainers want him out as leader

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A single piece of data

That 22 people were prepared to state publicly that RMS was harmful and should go.

When it comes to feelings, perception is reality. I'm not commenting here, shrilly or otherwise, calling out any particular failing on RMS's part. I'm commenting about the dangers and costs of running organisations in the manner in which the GNU project and FSF have been. It's a matter for the GNU contributors to make their case and present their evidence. I haven't claimed I think RMS should go. I'm just not surprised that others think so.

For what it's worth, I'm a strong believer in freedom of speech and thought. I don't mind a disagreement and I'm prepared to judge the opinion and not the person. I'm pretty leery of any suggestion that employers should be able to discriminate against staff based on their political views, just as I would be for any other non-work related attribute such as their ethnicity, sex or orientation.

There's a caveat, though. If the person concerned is a spokesperson or leader with a public profile in an organisation, I think the organisation has a stake in that person's public statements when it's possible those statements might conflict with the organisation's stated principles or policies, otherwise offend or cause embarrassment. In that case, I think it's a reasonable trade-off for the person to accept a need to at least stay silent on such matters for the duration, if they accept this role.

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