Richard Stallman: Why âGNUâS Not Linuxâ and Why We Should âSay LiGNUxâ

From: Liam Lindholm
Date: Mon Dec 23 2013 - 12:01:12 EST

Dear fellow Linux kernel hackers:

It has come to my attention that Richard M. Stallman, founder of the
Free Software Foundation and creator of the GNU project, has once
again set out to fragment our grassroots community.

Recently, Mr. Stallman has started a new push for acknowledgement of
GNU in Linux. No, not the familiar âGNU/Linuxâ that we're all sick and
tired of hearing about but, instead, a failed anagram of these same
terms. The campaign is called âSay LiGNUxâ and demands that users of
any Linux-kernel operating system employing GNU software (which
comprises less than 15% of most modern Linux distributions nowadays)
call the operating system âLiGNUx.â

His presentation on the âSay LiGNUxâ campaign is served in PNG format
at so you can see the insanity for yourself.

Yes, that's right. LiGNUx, pronounced like âpig cooks,â would be the
name of choice for our work in the last two decades. Stallman suggests
that we trash our existing name recognition and all common sense to
adopt his academic linguistic exercise in masturbatory politics that
represents the kernel's license and some poorly-built utilities that
no one uses anymore.

Mr. Stallman even suggests that users who refuse to say LiGNUx should
instead install GNU/HURD so as to remove any ambiguity about licenses
and nomenclature. What the hell?!

When is the last time someone named their operating system after the
license the kernel is released under? Such an esoteric naming method
is madness. Should Apple call OS X âApple/XNU?â Or how about the
Berkeley operating systems? Should they call their products âFreeBSDâ
or âOpenBSD?â Should Microsoft call their operating system âMicrosoft
Windows?â The suggestion is patently absurd.

We should not give in to the wailing demands of this zealotry. Mr.
Stallman clearly needs a break from promoting an increasingly
irrelevant software platform. Perhaps that means banning him from
LKML, or asking Linus to suggest some vacation therapy for poor Mr.
Stallman and his zealotry, or having the Linux Foundation issue a
press release distancing themselves from RMS, GNU, and the Free
Software Foundation.

Whatever the next course of action is, we should all ignore Mr.
Stallman and continue to call Linux as Linux.

I am interested to hear your thoughts on the topic, fellow Linux kernel hackers.

Merry Christmas.

Liam Oskar Lindholm,
Linux Kernel Hacker
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