[linux-elitists] Re: My Anti-Qmail Page

Rick Moen rick@linuxmafia.com
Mon Nov 7 09:29:09 PST 2005

Quoting Shlomi Fish (shlomif@iglu.org.il):

> I asked you to write something for me, which you didn't and so had nothing to 
> put there instead. I would like to replace it with something more 
> appropriate.

For reasons mentioned, writing something worthwhile at appropriate
length is very difficult, which is why I honestly recommended dropping
that matter entirely.

However, I actually did write something.  Here it is again:  "Because
the licence effectively permits only the author (Daniel J. Bernstein)
to maintain the software, his consistently, mulishly unpleasant and
hostile attitude tends to become an obstacle, as it would not be if the
software were licensed differently."

That's not very good (and not very short), but it's the best I could
think up:  It at least makes clear that you're not just doing a
gratuitous personal slam, and explains why his personal qualities matter
as an exception to the general rule that software rises or falls on its
own merit.

It's still sour reading, though.  It's much better when you can avoid
editorialising, let facts speak for themselves and let readers draw
their own conclusions.  E.g., my DJBware essay links to Dan's
threatening to eject a subscriber from a mailing list for proposing a
patch Dan didn't like, and links to Dan brandishing legal threats
against me for "libel" against his software.  Doing that makes editorial
comment superfluous, _and_ is much stronger rhetoric.

However, working such things into a write-up as brief as yours would be
very difficult.

> Rick, your comments have been extremely helpful, so thanks a lot! Keep
> up the good work.

You're welcome.  Thanks for the effort.

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