that old GNU/Linux argument

Alexandre Oliva aoliva at
Sun Jul 20 09:22:55 UTC 2008

On Jul 20, 2008, Thomas Cameron <thomas.cameron at> wrote:

> You don't see them making asinine demands that we go around calling
> it Sendmail/Linux or Apache/Linux, do you?

> Inflammatory language like this does *not* make someone more likely to
> agree with you.


As for "demands", it's quite a misunderstanding to take the requests
to correct the "asinine demands" to the contrary as demands, rather
than as what they are: requests for cooperation, or at least respect,
from people who are hopefully not enemies of the Free Software

Of course there are those who *are* enemies of the movement, or the
FSF, or of RMS's, and who feel so strongly about any or all of them to
the point of disputing the request with excuses that they themselves
reject when presented as counter arguments.

Nobody is telling or demanding GNU/Linux systems to be named as such.
What I do, and what I know the FSF does, is to request people to not
refer to the combination as just Linux, for that's harmful to the Free
Software movement and unfair to the GNU project.  Names that don't
refer to any other minor component of the operating system in
detriment of its major component are perfectly fine.

>> because Linux is an even smaller part of Fedora than GNU/Linux is.

> I don't think anyone on this list is claiming that Fedora == Linux.

No, but some people claim it's Linux, rather than GNU/Linux.

> I think what has been said over and over is that Fedora is a Linux
> distribution.


> The vast majority of the community and the industry calls
> Linux distributions just plain old "Linux."

Err...  Let's see...  Debian GNU/Linux, Ubuntu, Fedora, OpenSUSE,
gNewSense, BLAG, Insigne GNU/Linux...  I don't see any "Linux" without
"GNU/" in this list of names of GNU/Linux distributions.

I'm sure you can come up with some examples of distros, especially
commercial ones, that prefer not to promote the philosophy carried by
the GNU brand, but, seriously, "vast majority of the community"?!?

Alexandre Oliva
Free Software Evangelist  oliva@{,}
FSFLA Board Member       ¡Sé Libre! =>
Red Hat Compiler Engineer   aoliva@{,}

More information about the fedora-list mailing list