"At least Richard Stallman is not accused of raping anyone. But is that our highest standard? The standard that this prestigious institution holds itself to? If this is what MIT wants to defend; if this is what MIT wants to stand for, then, yes, burn it to the ground."

Let me get this straight; because Stallman did *not* rape anyone, we must utterly destroy the university that employs him. Yes?


What Stallman said:
> the most plausible scenario is that she presented herself to him as entirely willing.

How it was interpreted:
> he says that an enslaved child could, somehow, be "entirely willing".

The whole sorry mess seems to come down to a university student who couldn't understand that "presented herself to him as" means '*pretended* to be willing', not '*was* willing'.

Then, having realized her mistake, instead of admitting it and apologized, she doubled down. Claiming that it didn't matter that her key claim was false, because of other things she thinks are bad about Stallman, like:

> Richard Stallman has problematic opinions.


Because there are correct opinions about everything, and we all know what they are, and anyone who deviates from them deserves to be purged?

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"Problematic opinions" is a charge people in power level against dissenters. Colonizers think indigenous people have "problematic opinions". The fossil fuel industry thinks climate change and peak oil activists have "problematic opinions". White supremacists think MLK and Malcolm X had "problematic opinions". Parliamentarians thought the Suffragettes had "problematic opinions". The corporate tech industry thinks the software freedom movement have "problematic opinions".

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Zionists think supporters of Palestinian human rights have "problematic opinions". Authors have literary awards stripped for publicly supporting the movement.

"What is the meaning of a literary award that undermines the right to advocate for human rights, the principles of freedom of conscience and expression, and the freedom to criticise? Without these, art and culture become meaningless luxuries."

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The whole situation is just very sad. The author has clearly experienced a lot of bigotry and bullying and is quite rightly angry about that. That shit shouldn't happen. But the person who became the target of that deep well of outrage was not one of the people who had mistreated her. He was just a random someone who happened to come to her attention. Wong place, wrong time. The truly sad thing is that when she emptied her discursive gun into his reputation, she didn't even know who he was.

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Stallman drama 

@strypey I think this isn't the first case where a hacker inserts one word that changes the meaning of the sentence 180 degrees, and someone else (persumably a non-hacker) doesn't notice/understand that word and replies to the resulting misinterpretation.

@strypey It doesn't help that people tend to insert some until-recently modifier words without meaning them, just as a decoration, destroying their modifier semantics.

@strypey Many things are going on here.

- Social media & surveillance capitalism modifying our behavior for engagement. Outrage gets attention.

- Changing nature of American universities and new generation of students. See: thecoddling.com.

- RMS isn't guilty of what he's accused of in this particular instance. But he has been rude to people, and it didn't help. I can't speak for women.

(I was at Kuhn's LibrePlanet talk when RMS made a fuss. Also see: web.archive.org/web/2007050712)

@strypey My own introduction to free software movement is from Stallman's talks and writings. He gave a talk in my college in India back in 2001. I got excited and did a project on Hurd. He's been traveling around the world, giving talks, recruiting.

It is sad and ironic that surveillance capitalism and dirty yellow journalism got RMS at a time when the ideas of libre is more important than ever, and people who should know better joined the fray. 😞

Seen this?


@sajith I can't read Medium from behind the Great Firewall. Is there a copy on the fediverse, or anywhere else that isn't a US datafarm?

@strypey It is written by Thomas Bushnell, BSG, a long-time collaborator of rms on GNU Hurd project. I too wish that Bushnell had chosen a less questionable website than medium dot com to share his thoughts.

How about an archive.org link?


@strypey Also, why would they block Medium? 🤔

You're probably better off without Medium, in my opinion. I suspect people who choose to write there are (1) people that are okay with walled gardens, overtly bloated websites, and other silicon valley style bullshit; (2) people who are tainted by the lure of "metrics" provided by Medium. Writing for metrics is basically writing for A Herd.

Obviously I do not like Medium as a medium. 🙂

@strypey Also Hollywood thinks the software freedom movement have "problematic opinions" due to their distaste for DRM, despite they fact the reason why they're centered in California is to avoid Edison's insistance on them using a "rent don't buy" model (amongst other things).

@alcinnz true! I think I first learned about this thanks to 'The Pirate's Dilemma' by , although Lessig may also have written about it.

>The author has clearly experienced a lot of bigotry and bullying and is quite rightly angry about that.
We don't know actually. We can suppose that yes it's possible. But we don't know. In my interpretation of that person's view is that person a canyon large worldview between our own. Thus simple things that shouldn't be interpreted as negative are treated as such.

>Wong place, wrong time.
Possible for that person. But other people on twitter arnen't. Some of the insistent people have Google and MS background.

> We can suppose that yes it's possible. But we don't know.

She says so in her Medium post, as part of her explanation for her decision to lash out at Stallman. I believe her. It's not like it's unusual for women from ethnic minorities to experience discrimination. We're not going to solve this problem of scorched earth Safer Spaces Policing without empathy for the real suffering that is exploited by it for political purposes (as it clearly was with Stallman).

>She says so in her Medium post
I have re-read it and I do not find it.
>I believe her
I do not. And the reason for why I do not is because the post is made with evaluations.

>There are so many things wrong with what Richard Stallman said I hardly know where to begin
"so many things wrong" is an evaluation "things" and "wrong" precisely, this created passive violence (I'll abbreviate it to
"PV" because I'll post it a lot).
Note that my intent of pointing out PV is not to say that she's wrong or other I use it as an example for reason of why so much more PV resulted from it.

>First, he didn’t even give the typical, whiney, ‘he’s accused but not convicted’ defense.
This is another piece of PV, the part "he didn’t even give the typical" catalogs that person into something she already defined herself, a negative one that is.

>said “Let’s assume that Marvin Minsky had sex with an underage girl who was a victim of child sex trafficking”
PV: words put in the mouth of someone else.
>and then he says that an enslaved child could, somehow, be “entirely willing”.
PV:words put in the mouth of someone else.

>Let’s also note that he called a group of child sex trafficking victims a ‘harem’, a terrible word choice.
PV: "a terrible word choice." is an evaluation based on arbitrary moral.

>Richard Stallman decided it was appropriate to email his opinion
PV: "decided it was appropriate to email his opinion" is an evaluation based on arbitrary moral.
>which had undergraduate students on it
Opinion: why is that considered as "bad" people have a choice to participate or not and a university in which you can't discuss certain topics will probably sterilize the purpose of it.

>It is likely some of them are “18 years old or 17”.
Opinion: I suppose that the implied problem is that it can hurt them mentally ? I can understand if these people were 12 years old but at 17/18 you should have been prepared to adult topics, and it's not by avoiding them at that age that you will help them to get introduced in adulthood.

>I thought back to every person who has ever asked me how to “fix” the gender problems in STEM, how to “get more girls” to join STEM programs.
Opinion: Having more of a sex work in a certain domain of work is not a problem. Just mind your own work indiscriminately help those who wish to get better or in and you'll have a great life.

>there is nothing wrong with girls in STEM
Opinion: Just like men and there is an exception for both sex when they have behaviors that disrupts people.

>because they are filled to the brim with so, so many shitty men.
PV: " so many shitty men." evaluation. exactly the word "many" and "shitty" implies various/imprecise speculations on how only men can behave in a negative manner.
If that person would have wanted to express that without PV she would have formulated it as such "I have observed someone who choose to stop her studies because someone has been everyday stealing her paper notes and she couldn't work properly without them".
It's longer yes but it removes any possible kind of misinterpretation, misinterpretation is a factor of PV.

>Richard Stallman was known to be problematic long before this.
PV: "to be problematic" an evaluation.

>A relatively less serious or even funny gaffe
PV :"relatively less serious" "funny gaffe" both are evaluations, it implies arbitrary interpretation of wrongness about humour.

>Why do we allow the jokes and the comments and everything small to just ‘slide’?
Opinion: because we want to love each others and not persecute each other ?

>Why do we wait until it becomes bad and public and unbearable
Opinion: it wouldn't have become anything if less evaluations were made.
>and people like me have to write posts like this?
PV: "people like me" implies righteousness.

>and endorse shitty men in science with the other?
PV: "endorse shitty men in science" the word "endorse" is an evaluation saying that X said or did Y. The word "shitty" is an evaluation. The word "men" in the sentence implies that only men can behave in a negative way.

>Why do we excuse people simply because they are “geniuses”?
PV: This sentence is an evaluation implying that everyone excuse some people based on their intellect.

>What’s more, the woman would probably be less egotistical and more team-oriented about it.
PV: "the woman would probably be less egotistical" the word "would" and "probably" implies superiority over the opposed sex in the sentence.

>I know, now, that if prominent technology institutions won’t start firing their problematic men left right and center
PV: the word "prominent" implies that only these institutions should react, the word "problematic" is an evaluation based on moral.

>even though Harvard has certainly taken far more Epstein funding and stayed far more silent about the matter
PV: "has certainly taken far more" the word "certainly" is an evaluation based on her own speculations.

>Additionally, a catalogue of other problematic things Stallman has said in the past:
The urls from geekfemism are also a form of PV due to the fact that they remove context of such statements cited.

>This was really about all the times I have heard about a classmate’s advisor crushing her dreams
Question: She heard or did she asked both parties directly ?

>Seth Lloyd mocking female students
I have made some research and nothing appears about that.

>Perhaps the only criticism I will accept is that
PV: "the only criticism I will accept" telling someone that you don't want to listen to their own words doesn't incite compassion.

>The privilege to face only microaggressions.
PV: the word "privilege" and "microaggressions" are both evaluations based on moral and wrongness of somebody else.

Same thing for "Appendix A”.
This is what happens when we are disconnect from our compassionate nature, it leads us to behave violently and exploitative. And if you apply nvc to all the people who have been "outraged" it's the exact same scheme of PV.
I copy/pasted the chapter about "Communication that blocks compassion" here: https://loadaverage.org/conversation/13291675#notice-18288575 , because that's the root of the problem in this case.

>that is exploited by it for political purposes (as it clearly was with Stallman).
I don't understand can you please explain it another way ?

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