In a thread entitled “What are the benefits of open source?”, started by amicus_curious, one of the trolls of the Internet, I wrote:
“Fortunately Ziff-Davis has decided that OUR side of this debate is worth hearing.”
That is the problem. ZD does not love GNU/Linux. There is nothing wrong with being balanced but putting up a debate page and tolerating abuse is wrong. There appears to be no active moderation here.
There isn’t really a debate. Supporters of GNU/Linux bring out examples of good things happening with GNU/Linux and the trolls heap insults and ignore the data. The supporters of M$ bring out more trolls. The trolls look at data from M$ and USA when that is highly unrepresentative of global usage. The trolls put impossibly narrow conditions on GNU/Linux that are clearly biased.
GNU/Linux on the desktop has made great progress in 2007/2008 in spite of all the beliefs, knowledge and expertise of the trolls to deny that GNU/Linux is advancing quite well. I expect a good annual increase in share for several years. All the signs point to it:OEM units with GNU/Linux, new products like the eee PC, web stats even from USA, survey stats from all over, and Vista flopping and XP being killed. There is nothing the trolls can write that will stop this progress.“
Which, I think is fair criticism of the moderation there when I can be called an “idiot”, “zealot” (in the derogatory sense of a mindless person), “teacher” (in the sense of those, who can’t, teach), and “from Canaduh, eh?” and “stupid” with no comment from the moderator whatsoever.
The moderator’s reply was:
Oh, can it, would you?
So, it appears that enthusiasm by fans of GNU/Linux cannot be tolerated there but ad hominem attacks, wild disparaging remarks about GNU/Linux and users of GNU/Linux are just fine. The trolls there in recent weeks, on www.desktoplinux.com have spouted ideas like:
- GNU/Linux on the desktop is not ready because businesses do not deploy it on 5000-desktop quantities. I replied with many examples of business doing that and my citations were criticized as irrelevant by the trolls, and the moderator did nothing. The trolls rarely document their criticism. It’s usually a one-liner or a very biased source.
- GNU/Linux has progressed to only a 1% share in 15 years so it will never make it. I dug up numbers from SEC filings and web stats to prove GNU/Linux has more than a 6% share globally.
- GNU/Linux is too hard and complicated. I recount the use of GNU/Linux successfully and with only occasional help needed by six-year old humans. I recount the difficulties just starting a brand new Vista machine (now, there’s complicated). Where was the moderator when it was stated in the forums that I was only a teacher and new nothing about IT, was incompetent, and was deceiving my students and employers about the usefulness of GNU/Linux? Nowhere.
- Coders of FLOSS were compared to monkeys by oldman who rarely does more than a one-liner. This is not debate. It is abuse.
“The FLOSS community has far more coders than M$, for instance, and because the code is open whoever has a better idea and implementation of that idea wins.”
10000 monkeys banging away at typewriters will not re-create hamlet.
This reply could be seen as humorous but it completely ignores the fact that there are more than 100000 coders working on GNU/Linux around the world and many are top in their field or are working towards that. That is classic web trolling:
- say nothing about the subject at hand,
- change the subject,
- hurl abuse/derision, and
- begging the question.
Where was the moderator when the trolls threw out gems like GNU/Linux would never make it on the desktop until QuickBooks, PhotoShop and AutoCad were ported to GNU/Linux. When it was pointed out that only a few seats in most businesses would use those applications, we were shouted down as stupid ignorant nitwits by a chorus of trolls.
One can see the magnitude of the problem by sorting out the players. These are the frequent posters:
What does it say about the site that trolls are as plentiful as legitimate posters, trolls hurl insults at rational human beings who cite reputable sources supporting their arguments, and the site is supposed to be about GNU/Linux on the desktop? There appear to be many thousands of visitors to the site but so few post because they are not masochists.
So, I conclude trolls and M$’s sycophants are welcome on www.desktoplinux.com and I am not. So I am done with that site. I will contribute more here where Google can find my comments. I have contributed a lot to the site in the last year and all I get is abuse from the trolls with no help from the moderator.
In case any of the trolls drop by and are confused by the word, “sycophant”, I supply alternatives from Moby Thesaurus:
Moby Thesaurus words for “sycophant”:
adherent, adulator, apple-polisher, ass-licker, backscratcher,
backslapper, blarneyer, bootlick, bootlicker, bootlicking,
brown-nose, brownie, cajoler, clawback, courtier, cowering,
creature, cringer, cringing, disciple, dummy, dupe, fawner,
figurehead, flatterer, flunky, follower, footlicker, gillie, goon,
gopher, groveler, groveling, handshaker, hanger-on, helot,
henchman, instrument, jackal, kowtower, kowtowing, lackey,
led captain, lickspit, lickspittle, man, mealymouth, minion,
myrmidon, parasitic, peon, puppet, reptile, satellite, self-seeker,
serf, slave, snob, spaniel, stooge, suck, thug, timeserver, toad,
toadeater, toady, toadying, toadyish, tool, truckler, truckling,
tufthunter, votary, wheedler, yes-man
Pick whichever word you like.