[linux-elitists] [RANT] Debian the Elitist Distribution? [was Re: RFI: Recommendation for a good Vocabulary Builder]

Shlomi Fish shlomif@iglu.org.il
Sun Feb 15 00:12:27 PST 2004

On Friday 13 February 2004 22:56, Teh Entar-Nick wrote:
> begin  Shlomi Fish  quotation:
> > On Friday 13 February 2004 22:25, Mister Bad wrote:
> > > I use the BSD 'quiz' program. It's in the Debian package bsdgames.
> >
> > Why do people here automagically assume I'm using Debian? There's an
> > awful lot of Debianism here.
> 	It's the elitist's distro.  Duh.

What? Where? Why? How come?

I consider myself a Linux guru by far, and still I'm using Mandrake on my home 
computer. I like it and would recommend it to anyone, beginners and experts 
alike. What I don't like is the Debian folks' hubris.

Yes, the Debian camp is very full of hubris. Among it is:

* Debianists think Debian is the best possible distribution for all purposes. 
They think all other distributions are inferior, no matter how much their 
people like them.

* That they think or claim that it is the only distribution that is truly free 
software, which is a direct insult to the other open source distros out 

* That it is a small country with a lot of red tape and a great inability to 
make burning decisions quickly.

* That the Debian Free Software Guidelines are getting on everybody's nerves 
lately because they are being applied to other forms of media, which is 
clearly not software.

* That a great deal of them are otherwise arrogant, hyper-collectivists, and 
self-centered (why should we release SRPMs/RPMs? We use Debian!).

So, claiming it to be the official elitist distribution is not better than 
claiming that IceWM is the official elitist Desktop/Windows Manager. Linux is 
about choice.

So, please get off the tree, and become as humble and as non-intrusive as the 
rest of us. 

For the record, I once encountered two newbies who installed Debian because 
they believed it was the only truly free software one. They brought their 
computer all the way to Haifa, as the installation went weary, and X-Windows 
wouldn't start. Yes, the installation did not go flawlessly.

When I talked to one of them some other time he:

1. Did not know Mandrake, RedHat and friends were not open source.

2. Did not know it was perfectly legal to sell free software. (he thought it 
must be given away for free)

So, this Debian hype is causing a lot of damage and it's high time it stopped.

> > I happen to be a happy Mandrake user.
> 	Nothing wrong with Mandrake.  It's a fine first distribution.
> I recommend it to most beginners.

It's also a fine distribution for experts.


	Shlomi Fish

Shlomi Fish      shlomif@iglu.org.il
Homepage:        http://t2.technion.ac.il/~shlomif/

I don't believe in fairies. Oops! A fairy died.
I don't believe in fairies. Oops! Another fairy died.

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