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Re: Connotation analysis for Fedora Project codenames

On 03/26/2012 12:17 PM, Josh Boyer wrote:
On Mon, Mar 26, 2012 at 3:05 PM, mario juliano grande balletta
<mario.balletta@xxxxxxxxx>  wrote:
No one owns the planets, stars, galaxies, etc.  Using names from
nature could offer an endless supply of possibilities and also avoids
cultural issues, unless there are any Raelians in the community
(kidding :-).

Imagine Fedora 18 ( Orion )  or Fedora 18 ( Wombat )  or Fedora 18 ( Everest )

see the idea?
It's quite recognized that Mars is the God of War.  Are you suggesting
Fedora should use a release name that promotes war?  Pluto is the God of
the Underworld.  Names of deities can be offensive to atheists.

See the idea?  People can get offended by anything.

I'm going to attempt to take us from endless commentary into concrete proposal mode. Of course, I'll have to add my minor bit of commentary at some point, but.... :)

I mostly wish that this discussion had come up a long time ago - maybe, say, while voting for the specific name that has sparked this discussion, but at the bare minimum, prior to us actually kicking off the release name process. I'm not a fan of disenfranchising folks who have submitted names, nor of doing the same to folks who have made the effort to inform folks that their names aren't meeting "is-a" requirements, doing basic name collision searches, etc. Thus, I'm not a fan of yanking release names right now before voting.

I'm also of the opinion that a lot of people happen to have *fun* participating in the naming process, and I also think it's an excellent opportunity to show just one more way that Fedora differentiates itself -- anyone can propose a name. Perhaps it's something we could capitalize on a bit more in terms of being a first step for someone discovering what they could actually accomplish as part of our community. But anyway......

I propose:

* Continue with naming process as previously detailed, but perhaps with a lengthier voting period and/or a greater effort to raise awareness of this particular election.
* Allow "No Name" to be an option for the F18 cycle.
* Have a separate vote (I have no idea if this can be done within the same voting "page" or if we'd need to have two separate elections at the same time) for:

** Keep release names
** Abolish release names after F18.

We could, theoretically, just add "No Name, F18 and beyond" in the list with all other release names, in one vote. My hesitation here is how well this jives with the voting methodology; it's entirely possible that we could wind up with 30% of votes going to "No name" and 70% of votes being split into fractions of less than 30% amongst multiple release names, which I don't think very accurately represents "I like the release naming process" vs. "I dislike it, please discontinue." I could be wrong here, I'm not a range voting expert or a statistician.

With regards to connotation analysis, and I *will* inject my bit of commentary here:

I'm a believer in the Fedora Project's contributors' abilities to Do the Right Thing. What I'm not a fan of is the initials FP transitioning from meaning "Fedora Project" to "Fun Police." We have an enormous, diverse, worldwide community, with representation from all corners of beliefs, values, political ideologies, and otherwise, and everyone has a voice. I believe that 99.999% of the time, if or when an egregiously offensive *anything* comes up, people speak up. We've seen this in the past with a small handful of issues, and the community has always taken the steps to assess and sometimes correct those issues, case-by-case, through discussion and reasonable judgement. As Josh stated above, people can get offended by *anything*, and the last place I think we want to be as a project is a spot where we wind up subjecting every corner of the project to scrutiny levels that, in the end, can be incredibly subjective, and more importantly, block getting Things Done in any sort of timely manner. I don't want to lose the Having Fun, Getting Things Done aspect of participation that we enjoy here.

In short: I trust Us, the community of contributors. Frankly, not only do I think that a small handful of people dedicated to "connotation analysis" is less likely to catch those issues than, say, the whole of the community, I think that it could actually be detrimental in that folks may not speak up, assuming that the review group will catch issues, or that people become disenfranchised from speaking up because they are not part of "the group."

That said, I don't think there is a problem with, say, posting the list of names that the Board is sending to legal for review to the translations list *at the same time it goes to legal* as a best-effort sanity check to ensure that the word "Banana" isn't actually the name of a dictator who lead a genocide in Azeroth. And in doing so, *trusting* that it doesn't become a free-for-all of ridiculous associations claimed to be offensive, such as "Bananas are yellow, and I hate yellow," or "Some people are allergic to bananas," "I broke my leg once slipping on a banana peel," "The increasing size of bananas is considered by some to be the effect of evolution, and evolution is not accepted by all beliefs," "Monkeys love bananas and they will be offended," or any other similar, ahem, monkey business.

And (tongue-in-cheek), God help us if the International Arithmophobia Association comes along. :)

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