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Re: Why the "social contract" should not be endorsed

From: Kaz Kylheku (gnu-misc-discuss)
Subject: Re: Why the "social contract" should not be endorsed
Date: Tue, 25 Feb 2020 10:25:13 -0800
User-agent: Roundcube Webmail/0.9.2

On 2020-02-24 19:36, Alexandre François Garreau wrote:
Le samedi 22 février 2020, 20:48:43 CET Andreas Enge a écrit :
If anything, this message shows how much a code of conduct is needed.

I’ve just read

Note that there has been no initiative to promote that code of conduct
for the GNU project. All the noise has been about the social

There is no "GNU" on it, and it states that it pertains only to that

Members of that site are deliberately not drawing attention to it.

If they have their way, they will try to sneak that into the organization
"under the radar" somehow.

It's like a magic trick. You're supposed to keep your eyes on the hand
which is waving the (relatively harmless) social contract, while
the other hand is doing something sinister (being the left hand).

PS: there’s the added issue that while this CoC talks about “community”, it also does about “professional settings” (which to me is antagonist to
“community”, and the very reason why the “community” word is so used
nowadays (to include unpaid/unemployed people)), while this wiki is not
professional, and GNU is not a professional organization, nor even
withstand “professionalism” (I recall that being stated along with
recalling GNU’s name itself is a joke anyway).

You have to read between the lines.

The world of global business has come to rely on an infrastructure made of
free software for business-critical roles.

This is particularly so of large, multi-national tech giants.

What these corporations want is nothing more than for projects
like GNU to just be servants, doing their bidding. Whatever you
depend on, you want to *control*, and that is particularly true
in business.

To do that they have to dismantle the projects from within.

With everyone's hands and souls tied up in social contracts and
codes of conduct, there will be no room left to reject bad software
changes from the Googles, Amazons and Microsofts of this world.

Make no mistake, this is a corporate dismantling and take down:
an attack on free software.

Some of the language in these documents is straight out of the HR
manual of a Fortune 500 firm. That's what those organizations use
use to keep employees and contractors in line.

The part about projects having to welcome low-experience participants
also plays into this. Corporations will use that to promote
people into free software projects who will then unwittingly
do their bidding. They will not only be too afraid of being rude
(due to all the codes of conduct) to reject bad changes, but also
lack the technical confidence for taking a stand: a double whammy,
one-two knockout.

These days, some people who work on free software are doing so
as part of their jobs. They were hired to do that and end up
producing some work that their employer then wants upstreamed.
Problem is, the work is shoddy because those people didn't quite
have the experience to do it right. Or, worse, it outright contains
objectionable changes that cannot be accepted no matter what.

Thus, the curmudgeons who control the upstream project want
want nothing to do with the changes.

Solution? Infiltrate those projects; get your people into
decision-making positions to displace the curmudgeons.

But first, you have to disarm those projects with codes of
conduct and social contracts which are worded such that your
people have to be "welcome".

Why, the free project can be regarded as just another department
in your company. Copy and paste something out of the HR manual
and make them follow that, and it's pretty much like you're their
boss! And they work for free, to boot.

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