• 0 Posts
  • 13 Comments
Joined 1Y ago
cake
Cake day: Jun 02, 2020

help-circle
rss

I just imagined (incorrectly I should add, or over-generalized at best) that a person like this coming with a proposal to rename something that suggests past oppression is doing it to appease their conscience without even trying to solve the issue of racism. Just a PR stunt for their (and their investors’) peace of mind.

The ‘pretend it didn’t happen’ person just renames eg. ‘master’ -> ‘main’, washes their hands of the whole thing and in their conscience they are saints, made a difference, fought the good fight, etc. but when racism rears it’s ugly head again they just will look for the next thing to rename. It’s like kids putting a black profile pic on their IG essentially. What good does that do? You’ve eradicated racism, have you? Well good on you mate, what global issue should we tackle next? Let’s rename fossil fuels to ‘poison’ and call it a day, eh?

I have since learned in this thread that the renaming in fact should be a part of it (but I would argue not the main part) which is what I sort of agree with. For the real anti-racism we cannot realistically expect github, or Microsoft, or any corporation to do anything about it since they care only about profit margins and to look good.


I may have been quick to react calling this move dumb because of my distance from this issue, thank you for your patience to educate me, I will think 5 seconds more before I react in the future.


I also joined from the reddit AMA and just learning about fediverse (how have I been a software developer for 15 years and not learned about this thing is beyond me). Looking forward to seeing how this thing develops, it is an amazing idea.


Thank you for the recommendation I will add it to my to-read list.


Very true, I think I just got used to the former but the latter is objectively better indeed, will start using that from now on.


I concede to your second point, and I am starting to see why black/white-list can be a sensitive term and just trying to change the connotation like I suggested somewhere above is not tractable.

I still think that education is key. Not going outright and calling people racist, that is counterproductive I wholeheartedly agree. But instilling in them from a younger age the evil of racism instead.


As for the anecdote in your third bullet point: instead of renaming black/white-list terms to something else, what if we actually educate that shop owner about racism and why it is idiotic and evil to discriminate against a person because of their skin color?


Germany has a lot of things censored as well due to its past. What is the outcome of this censorship? We have neo-nazis encroaching, meeting in secret and gaining in numbers (especially young uneducated people) because they sell themselves as being ‘cool’ and the ‘rebels’ fighting an unjust system.

Tell a human not to do something and that something becomes irresistible.


I am certain I am not the only one far away from colonial history. I am also certain there are black developers who are unaffected by these terms. These 2 certainties make me view this renaming idea as very much centered around current American politics and climate and therefore dumb.

Technology should not revolve around one single culture but forge its own culture and internal references.

This is not to say that I do not think that what is going on right now in the States is not important, I fell it is way overdue and I want to help in any way I can.


Is this really a good way to move forward? Rename everything and pretend like it did not happen? It feels like this kind of approach is just hiding things under the carpet. Renaming things that may have negative connotations due to a troubled history is too extreme form of censorship (similar to book burning) and a bit lazy IMHO.

All these technical terms are very descriptive of the concepts they abstract, (eg. it could be argued that black/white-listing is in relation to physical light and how it reflects off white and gets absorbed by black).

Disclaimer: I am culturally very far away from the colonial history so I may be a bit biased when I say renaming things like that is just dumb.


What’s next? Master/slave replicas should also be renamed, right? What about client/server? Black/white-listing? This is really dumb


the wrong way, due to my native language where gi is soft g (think how an italian would read the name giovanni)

but I’m slowly correcting that