why I ditched Ubuntu and went to Debian

Hello. I'm not doing this for the drama. The thing is some of my friends ask me why I ditched Ubuntu and went to Debian, and I'm tired to repeat the same things over and over. Also, I want to be able to just point to this post instead of repeating things again all over on the Internet.

With reasons, I mean ethical/moral reasons, not preference reasons (eg: "I don't like Unity"), said objectively.


  • Libhybris used by Canonical to promote Mir as it was developed by them.

Earlier this year however, I discovered that a well-known company had taken the code - disappeared underground with it for several months, improved upon it, utilized the capability in their advertisements and demos and in the end posted the code utilizing their own source control system, detached from any state of that of the upstream project's. Even to the extent some posters around the web thought libhybris was done by that company itself.

source: http://mer-project.blogspot.com.es/2013/04/wayland-utilizing-android-gpu-drivers.html

  • Canonical states false things about Wayland when presenting Mir. A bit later, they rephrase their claims.

(source needed)

  • Canonical Dash adds raise privacy concerns

source: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2012/10/privacy-ubuntu-1210-amazon-ads-and-data-leaks https://www.fsf.org/blogs/rms/ubuntu-spyware-what-to-do

  • Mark shuttlework response to privacy concerns about the Dash adds:

Your anonymity is preserved because we handle the query on your behalf. Don’t trust us? Erm, we have root. You do trust us with your data already. You trust us not to screw up on your machine with every update. You trust Debian, and you trust a large swathe of the open source community. And most importantly, you trust us to address it when, being human, we err, wrote Mark Shuttleworth in the blog post.

source: I can't find it on Shuttleworht's blog. although, searching for "Mark Shuttleworth we are root" on Google yields a lot of responses. http://i.imgur.com/brCqR.png

  • Canonical CLA. Canonical can re-license the work under it under a proprietary license.

source: http://www.canonical.com/contributors

  • Shuttleworth says they will embrace Wayland and make a useful contribution to the project. Two years later, they are releasing their own competing product and ignoring Wayland completely.

We evaluated the cost of building a new display manager, informed by the lessons learned in Wayland. We came to the conclusion that any such effort would only create a hard split in the world which wasn’t worth the cost of having done it.

Source: http://www.markshuttleworth.com/archives/551

  • Canonical offers the Banshee developers 100% of the profits from referrals in the Amazon MP3 store under the stipulation that the store is off by default. Banshee accepts. Canonical then renigs this offer and replaces it with a 75% Banshee / 25% Canonical split. They justify it by also donating 25% of all UbuntuOne MP3 purchases to the Gnome Foundation, but there's no evidence they're actually donating this money because we can't see their finances. Banshee is eventually removed as the default media player on Ubuntu (12.04).

There were a whole bunch of smaller PR blunders throughout that whole ordeal as well. Like Jono saying that "it all goes to FLOSS so why does it matter", then someone pointing out that not everything Canonical does is FLOSS. He also suggested that Banshee should change their license to protect their AmazonMP3 referral code. It really shows that Canonical only cares if something is legally fine, not that it is ethically fine.

Source: http://blog.grossmeier.net/2011/02/24/the-kerfuffle/ http://gburt.blogspot.com/2011/02/banshee-supporting-gnome-on-ubuntu.html

  • Canonical Gnome contributions. From Greg DeKoenigsberg (ex-RedHat) blog: > One of the most irritating things about working at Red Hat was watching Canonical take credit for code that Red Hat engineers wrote [...]. In the ONE area where Canonical claims to have the MOST customer focus and the MOST engineering expertise, Red Hat still outproduces them 16 TO 1.

Source: Jono blog: http://www.jonobacon.org/2010/07/30/red-hat-canonical-and-gnome-contributions/ RedHat ex-dev blog: http://gregdekspeaks.wordpress.com/2010/07/29/red-hat-16-canonical-1/
why I ditched Ubuntu and went to Debian why I ditched Ubuntu and went to Debian Reviewed by Kanthala Raghu on October 09, 2013 Rating: 5

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