When "Sharing" Goes a Bit Far

Everybody who has worked on a public project has experienced negative feedback — indeed, there are days here at Breaking News when reading comments and email is less than joyful — but the good usually balances out the bad. Not so, it seems, for a section of the Debian community, however, as a recent survey has revealed that some developers have begun receiving death threats.

The revelations came as part of responses to a "state of the teams" survey by Debian Project Leader Steve McIntyre. The aim of the exercise was to determine the current strengths and weaknesses of the teams that push the project along, and indeed revealed a great deal of useful information to that end. The most striking revelation, however, came from an unnamed female developer who disclosed that she received death threats due to her development work with Debian. McIntyre, describing himself as shocked and horrified, called for others who had received threats to speak up only to discover that a number of other female developers had been threatened by what he described as a "kook from the U.S." who accuses women of "destroying the free software movement."

We too are shocked and horrified to hear that these dedicated contributors have been subjected to such threats, and join with the Debian community in expressing our gratitude for their hard work.

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