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We have to do better than this. In today's press section you will find pieces from two different writers who have found out what it means to upset the Linux community. Both were amazed by the zealotry and sheer childishness of some of the responses they got to their articles. Neither, certainly, has been made more receptive to our message by this treatment. The arguable point that neither author showed much maturity in his original article is not relevant here; we need to keep to the high moral ground.

Folks, if somebody writes something that you feel is unfair or untrue, by all means drop them a note and tell them why you feel that way. A calm, clear, rational message can go a long way toward straightening people out. But please let's stop flaming members of the press just because we don't like something they write. Even if their words are silly beyond belief. The press as a whole really likes us now. Why do we have to alienate them? We really shoot ourselves in the foot when we do that.

The more paranoid among us could begin to suspect the presences of agents provocateurs here. What better way to discredit Linux than making its users look like a bunch of unruly children? Certain companies, one suspects, would not hesitate to do this sort of thing if they thought it would help. However, it is highly unlikely that anybody is doing that to us now. The Linux world seems entirely capable of producing its own flaming zealots. Nobody needs to help us. Wouldn't it be nice if we could make that change?

Speaking of conspiracy theories, here's a good one. The Free Software Foundation has been part of a Microsoft plot all along, and we never knew...

Well...we asked for comments on the new format, and we sure got them. The results are mixed; some people really like the new way, others really hate it. In particular, it seems we made life harder for the (many, evidently) folks who print out each weeks newsletter and read it on paper. We hadn't realized, somehow, that we were responsible for the death of so many trees... European readers, in particular, seem to use this mode. You do things differently when your local phone calls are metered.

So, we will now provide both modes of access. The lwn.net URL will yield the multi-page version. Folks who want to read LWN as one big page can go instead to:

The big page looks much like the Good Old Days, except that (most of) the text column has been widened to make things more printer friendly. Hopefully now everybody will be happy... We thank you all for your comments.

September 10, 1998



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