Making open source more inclusive by eradicating problematic language
www.redhat.com
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Red Hat is making a commitment to help make open source a truly inclusive space and our action plan to eradicate problematic language from our practices and vocabulary.
@nxlemmy
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111Y

To all of you being extremely cynical about this: No this doesn’t solve systemic racism, no this doesn’t bring back people who were killed. This is a tiny step, but all of you who are crying about it should really be questioning why this bothers you so much. It requires minimal amount of work and to y’all saying it had no racist intent it just so happens to be that black is bad and white is good and master\slave is normal terminology. You should think about why that is.

@jaidedctrl
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5
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1Y

removing “slave” totally makes sense to me, but removing “master” feels weird— maybe i’m just desensitized lol.

“allowlist” and “denylist” sound a bit weird imo. “blocklist” sounds better— i’m not sure what could replace “allowlist” though.

@LibertyBeta
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31Y

I’m right there with you. Master key, Master copy, audio mastering. Master means completely control of something, which is not an inherently good or bad thing.

That said, I kinda like allowlist. It fits in with Access Control List.

@sbvm
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3
edit-2
1Y

As far as I can tell, “whitelist” and “blacklist” don’t have a racist etymology. My stance is, “okay, I guess if they make you uncomfortable, we can spend our time and money to change these few cases in a bunch of documentation, configuration files, APIs, and variable names for the sake of your feelings…” However, I am worried that not grounding these changes in any kind of principled framework, apart from “at least one person feels uncomfortable”, is a bit risky for the people who have limited time and budgets to accomplish other things.

Edit: that was way too harsh. I guess there are “feelings” and feelings and if the reason is that you feel that the word “black” is associated with negative things and that’s tied up in the modern day continuing systemic racism, that totally makes sense to me. I guess for other words, the justification would have to be similarly impactful, and I just wonder how to go about judging that.

@NeoGee
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41Y

The OED notes that the first known use of the term “Blacklist” appears to be in The true peace-maker: laid forth in a sermon before his Majesty at Theobalds written by the Bishop of Norwich, Joseph Hall, in 1624:

“Ye secret oppressors,…ye kind drunkards, and who euer come within this blacke list of wickednesse.”

The word black when used in this context refers to negative connotations, and is attested as such way before 1624. The term blackball, which is first attested in 1550, describes the act of placing a black ball into a container as a means of recording a negative vote (and vice-versa using a white ball to record a positive vote).

Even though the term was thus attested and know well before the 20th century, popular usage was nevertheless strictly limited. Use of the term blacklist first gained credence and popularity in the United States not by way of McCarthy, but rather from British blockade efforts during World War I. Over the course of 1915 and 1916 British government agencies gradually developed an implemented a system whereby neutral firms and individuals suspected of trading with or otherwise aiding the Central Powers would be denied access to Entente infrastructure such as ship bunker, financial services and communications. Cargoes or merchant vessels belonging to such firms or individuals could also be confiscated by Entente naval patrols if encountered in transit to Europe.

British government agencies and departments maintained several such lists, but only one of these were public. Officially called the Statutory List, but much more commonly known simply as the British blacklist, it became a prominent focus of hatred, not only among those American firms actually listed, but also by many members of the American media and general public which resented what was seen as illegal British interference with neutral trade. This resentment ran so deep that when the United States adopted similar trade control measures after joining the war in April 1917, the US government was careful never to officially endorse the British list, as well as avoiding referring to their own efforts by the same name.

edit: A quick Google Ngram search illustrates the trend nicely. Use of the term blacklist is extant before the Great War, but experiences a massive surge in popularity during the conflict itself. The subsequent upswing during the Second World War represents wide usage during that conflict to describe all manners of restrictions and proscriptions, many of which built on the experiences from the previous war.

The term whitelist is of much more recent origin, first being attested in 1842, and is then explicitly used to refer to the opposite of a blacklist (i.e. a list of approved or favored items).

@nxlemmy
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11Y

I think allowlist and denylist are fine. The name describes exactly what they do.

@NeoGee
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11Y

Am I alone in thinking this is silly, the was no racist intent when the terms were coined, so why change them, other than as a cynical ploy

@nxlemmy
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61Y

People also say " getting gypped", “caught redhanded”, etc. without “racist intent” but the terms are racist and come from racist stereotypes. So now that we know better why wouldn’t we evolve and do better?

krolden
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81Y

I thought ‘red handed’ meant you were caught with blood on your hands.

@strawberrydarling
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41Y

Geez. I’d never thought about the origins of “gypped” because I’d never really seen it textually before.

@NeoGee
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11Y

Etymology From red +‎ handed, likening to a murderer with their hands red with the victim’s blood. The phrase to be taken with red hand originally meant “to be caught in the act”. The use of red hand in this sense goes back to 15th-century Scotland and Scottish law. Sir Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe (1819) contains the first recorded use of taken red-handed for someone apprehended in the act of committing a crime. The expression subsequently became more common as caught red-handed.[1]

https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/red-handed#:~:text=Etymology,century Scotland and Scottish law.

https://www.thewrap.com/atlanta-fact-check-is-the-phrase-caught-red-handed-actually-racist/

ORIGIN OF GYP 1885–90, Americanism; back formation from Gypsy USAGE NOTE FOR GYP Gyp in the meanings “to swindle” or “a person who swindles” is sometimes perceived as insulting to or by Gypsies, since it stereotypes them as swindlers. However, gyp has apparently never been used as a deliberate ethnic slur, and many people are unaware that it is derived from Gypsy.

https://choice.npr.org/index.html?origin=https://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2013/12/30/242429836/why-being-gypped-hurts-the-roma-more-than-it-hurts-you#:~:text=According to the Oxford English,1914%2C in Louis Jackson %26 C. R.

https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/150468/is-jipped-a-politically-incorrect-word

@racoon
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-11Y

It’s time to ban Hegel’s master and slave dialectic. Let’s keep on forbidding words. That will teach the racist police officers a lesson!

@I_Mod_Things
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-31Y

sigh

@Doug
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-31Y

No particular reason for waiting until now. Noooooo reason at all, don’t even ask because you already know there is absolutely no reason for not doing this at any other time.

@blaha
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01Y

Well, it wouldn’t have occurred to me (or maybe to you) to start calling the Dark Web the Secret Web until someone pointed out it hurts them.

@NeoGee
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11Y

Isn’t it the Dark Web because it operates in the shadows !

@MegageM
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-71Y

Rewrite: “Doing nothing removing those words”

@SirLotsaLocks
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111Y

It helps make anybody feel more comfortable even just one person then it was worth it.

@xvf
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-31Y

Your username makes me uncomfortable.

@SirLotsaLocks
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31Y

Really?

@developred
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11
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8M

deleted by creator

@jaidedctrl
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10
edit-2
1Y

oh absolutely. companies are sociopathic, and everything they do is shallow, including this— but it is at least good that universalism is profitable. if people are subjugated, then there’re less customers!

or you can look at it like this: if companies are broadly vocalizing some support for a social cause, that means the cause is at least 51% supported, which means it’s winning!

@developred
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5
edit-2
8M

deleted by creator

@strawberrydarling
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41Y

Yep. In the abstract I think the changes are good, but I do roll my eyes a bit seeing it come top down from these megacorps. I’d like to see it be more of a grassroots thing coming from individual developers, but I’m probably asking too much…

@kari
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41Y

My thing is that sure, it’s just because they want the good PR, but it does mean that change is happening so it’s a net-good even if it’s only a selfish reasoning.

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Linux is a family of open source Unix-like operating systems based on the Linux kernel, an operating system kernel first released on September 17, 1991 by Linus Torvalds. Linux is typically packaged in a Linux distribution (or distro for short).

Distributions include the Linux kernel and supporting system software and libraries, many of which are provided by the GNU Project. Many Linux distributions use the word “Linux” in their name, but the Free Software Foundation uses the name GNU/Linux to emphasize the importance of GNU software, causing some controversy.

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