[nomination]for Fellowship Council renewal and activism

Christian Imhorst christian.imhorst at fsfe.org
Mon May 27 08:21:02 UTC 2019

Hello Carsten,

I think RMS is a brilliant mind when he talks about Free Software. No 
question. Unfortunately he is not so brilliant in other topics. And it's 
not an excuse that he is a child of  the decade he was born in. [1][2]

Sure, he makes big contributions to the Free Software movement. But I 
have a problem with the personality cult around him. I think there 
should be more people in the FSF besides RMS talking at conferences. 
More people in the FSF who make their contributions. We need more 
diversity in the Free Software movement, because it means respecting 
people as they are, without prejudice. Diversity brings solutions to 
complex problems of the present and the future we can not handle with 
solutions from the past. This requires people who see the world with 
different eyes. People have to be able to contribute to the Free 
Software movement with their whole personality as they are.


[1] https://twitter.com/sarahmei/status/994010501460865025

Am 19.05.2019 17:19 schrieb Carsten Agger:
> On 5/13/19 11:57 AM, Christian Imhorst wrote:
>> Hi,
>> I support FSFE and not FSF - among other things - because of
>> Stallman. No question RMS did much good for the Free Software
>> movement. After all, he founded it and he is one of the reasons why
>> Free Software even exists. But I don't think he should stay any
>> longer the figurehead of the Free Software movement. Seems the
>> longer he has any say, the longer he will poison the well. He hurts
>> his mission with statements about sexual abuse, dehumanizing
>> disabled people and denigrating women.
> I'm not entirely sure what you mean, except that I know RMS has been
> criticized for his "Saint Ignucius" stick. I also don't agree on his
> position of preferred pronouns for transgender people.
> One should note, however, that Stallman is a child of the decade he
> was born in and also seems to be quite rigid in his points of view, to
> the point where one might suspect a mild degree of autism. If the
> latter were to be the case, your comment - and the comments of all of
> those people who seemingly like to denigrate, ridicule and bully
> Stallman on Reddit - could be construed as ableist.
> I have no illusions as to Stallman being any sort of perfect person,
> yet I want to note that _not __only_ did he found the Free Software
> Movement and contribute s mzignificantly to it through the creation of
> the GNU project, he continues to spend all his time travelling the
> world and advocating software freedom - and not only that, he still
> occasionally comes up with important new contributions.
> The most recent example I can think of is this article from The
> Guardian:
> https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/apr/03/facebook-abusing-data-law-privacy-big-tech-surveillance
> [1]
>  in which he advocates ending the abusive surveillance by the tech
> giants by introducing a very simple law: No system is allowed to
> record data that are not necessary for its _primary_ purpose.
> Such a law could be implemented in the EU and could be enforced with
> mandatory, unenforced inspections and draconian, GDPR-style fines.
> That would be the end of Google's and Facebook's surveillance, since
> it would simply become illegal.
> I currently believe that such regulations are the _only_ possible way
> of defeating the surveillance regime. Stopping NSA surveillance might
> be a good thing, but it's rather immaterial, because the governments
> are likely to gain access to the tech giants' data troves anyway, as
> they have in China. I'd _love_ to see the FSFE adopt such a proposal
> and see it through the EU Parliament.
> And while Stallman is still capable of coming up with this kind of
> thing I honestly don't think we should ostracize him from the
> movement. I've supported the FSF before, and while I currently am
> supporting the FSFE and continue to do so, I might easily support the
> FSF again if I e.g. had more money.
> Best
>  Carsten
> Links:
> ------
> [1]
> https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/apr/03/facebook-abusing-data-law-privacy-big-tech-surveillance
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