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LinuxPower: Hypocrisy: An Open Source Closed Community

“I see dark clouds in the open source community this evening
(… the middle night of LWE), and these ominous signs do not come
from Microsoft infiltrators or profit-hungry corporations. Rather,
these storms brew within the community, as its popularity grows and
its members increase. As was once said, “Power corrupts. Absolute
power corrupts absolutely.”. Allow me to elaborate.”

“I have heard the whisperings, and for a long time, I wished not
to believe them. Even when I saw evidence with my own eyes, I
preferred to turn my head, but I can no longer do that. It does not
matter to me whether or not slashdot sold out, I’m not in the
position to judge them on that. Can you honestly say that if
Andover offered you that much money, you would tell them where to
stick it? What I am referring to is the subsequent elitism and
corruption within the slashdot camp. Its in the sneer on their
faces when new Linux users approach them with open arms. Its in the
way they seem to “tolerate” the plebians surrounding them. I think
that perhaps slashdot has forgotten its community, forgotten when
they were the ones looking for advice, looking for inspiration. The
slashdot camp expects to be treated like kings, with the open
source community as their court. Perhaps they have forgotten that
one of the wonderful things about the open source community is that
we’re all equals. Undoubtedly, slashdot.org has been a good
advocate for the community over the years, but that does not give
anyone the right to expect royal treatment. There is a marked
difference between respect and worship. The “better than you”
attitude has no place in the open source community.”

“I worked in the IBM booth at LWE, representing a partner
company that resells *nix based High Availability. I shared a rack
with several IBM employees who were showing off the
Memory Expansion Technology
that they had worked very hard on,
and incorporated into the Linux kernel. Everyone who saw their
demo was impressed with the possibilities
of their new
technology, the capacity to double the memory available to the OS
through hardware compression. But when one of these same
employees won a laptop from Caldera on Thursday, as soon as he was
identified as an IBM employee, he was booed off the stage. That
made me sick to my stomach.
The open source community should
not be a place that is elitist about who they accept help from.
These big corporations are helping the community in ways that the
smaller individuals cannot, and we should respect them as we would
anyone.”

Complete
Story