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Re: [GNU-linux-libre] "Free GNU/Linux distributions" list update

From: J.B. Nicholson
Subject: Re: [GNU-linux-libre] "Free GNU/Linux distributions" list updates
Date: Sat, 5 Aug 2017 18:00:20 -0500
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:52.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/52.2.1

Henry Jensen wrote:
However, it is not very clear what happens next. How the distro is
reviewed, what steps are involved.

Thanks for being more clear about what you mean by not being transparent.

I don't work for the FSF so I can't say definitively what happens or why any feedback from the FSF to you about ConnochaetOS has been years in coming. I believe:

- the FSF is very busy with many other tasks and probably doesn't have enough staff to do all of the work they're doing. As a result very few of their tasks are handled quickly unless that task can be automated.

- there are other distros ahead of yours in the evaluation queue and this task requires a significant amount of evaluation.

- there could be resource limitations involved here too: I see on that ConnochaetOS "is available for x86 (32 bit) only" and directs users looking for an x86_64 libre Slackware GNU/Linux distro elsewhere.

The page states: "When you do, we'll explain more about our evaluation
process to you, and get started on it quickly."

Well, they didn't when I contacted them some years ago.
And why explain it only privately, why not public for
anyone to see? That is what I call non-transparent.

By the same token we don't know exactly what you sent to them or when you sent feedback to them. Would you forward a copy of your feedback to them to this mailing list?

I imagine that the FSF has an interest in helping distro maintainers fix software freedom problems privately so as to minimize the chances for embarrassment and discouraging anyone who wants to participate in the process of making and maintaining a fully free distro. My guess is that the FSF sees this as an opportunity to encourage more of what they want to see (more free software) so they ought to err on the side of working privately first.

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