Why I’m sick of “why I don’t use Linux” posts


It seems like a new one comes in every three days at the moment. They're all the same, they're all pointless, and they all display shocking levels of ignornace. So before whingeing on a forum of enthusiasts about why you're leaving Linux (this isn't an airport – you don't have to announce your departure), maybe you should consider the following.

1. There is no such thing as "Linux" in the way you're complaining about

Linux is just the kernel. There is a company that maintains it, but none of your complaints are ever about the kernel, or at least not about things in it that the Linux Foundation can actually fix. If hardware manufacturers won't actively aid Linux driver support, there's not a damn thing the Foundation can do about it, never mind the random collection of devs and users on this subreddit.

"Linux" as a collection of distros is not a single entity. The many distros' leaders are not going to put their heads together in a council to address the concerns of u/imacoderhonest who is not even offering to help fix the most egregiously borked project in their eyes. And the oft-complained-about fragmentation is a feature, not a bug. Why? Because…

2. This is a hobby for most of those involved

The Linux kernel was written for shits and giggles. Its relative popularity is down to it working on lines familiar to other hobbyists and it being licensed, purely for convenience, such that other hobbyists could copy it. Many app and package projects are created and maintained for shits and giggles. The results are offered gratis, and you with your sense of entitlement believe that because you are having a public tantrum about the free stuff you're using, that the entire sphere of Linux hobbyists will nod sageley and address your concerns. Even better, there are some corporate-backed projects out there. Some of their devs hang out on here. Have you ever complained about Gnome to a Gnome dev? They will tell you that their agenda is set by their paymasters and that they have no interest in doing unpaid work to address the concerns of u/entitledredditor22. And even outside those paid devs…

3. The Linux community at large has no reason to care

You've tried a distro or two and they don't work for your use case. For many, many of us, Linux is a perfectly good tool for what we do. Media production, web development, software development, office work – there are plenty of users who have found a Linux set-up to suit them.

Those of us who have committed to Linux use (15 years and counting in my case) vote with our wallets when it comes to hardware. No working driver? We don't fucking buy it. We are ~2% of the desktop market share. As such, hardware companies often don't feel we're worth their while resourcing compatibility as a priority. They'd rather spend their time completely recoding their drivers for the latest Windows every 5 years because they kind of have to rather than writing an open-source Linux driver that will sit in the kernel forever. We know who our friends are in that respect (AMD, intel, Mackie, HP among others). If you're not prepared to play that game yourself, it's no use whingeing about it here. IBM can't get hardware manufacturers to play ball for RHEL's sake, so what chance has reddit's Linux community got? We're not the managers of Linux, u/linuxkaren, and even if we were, you're complaining to the wrong management. I mean, are you even a customer? What I mean by that is…

4. What have you, who complains to the Linux sphere at large that we should have been geared toward your personal user experience, ever done for the Linux sphere?

You're stropping off and paying $200 for a Windows license again. Good for you. Did you give the same $200 to your distro? To your DE? To the developers of your most used apps?

Did you hang out on your distro's user forum or subreddit giving advice and tech support to less experienced users?

Do you download the latest beta of your favourite distro and diligently report bugs to the proper channels?

Did you at least adopt a penguin through a WWF scheme?

I'm betting you've done none of that, because…

5. Your departure post isn't even contributing to this subreddit.

Every last one of these posts has some line in it suggesting OP is dropping a truth bomb. As if u/theprophetofsoftware has spoken and now the scales should fall from our eyes and we should cease the daily struggle we're all clearly having with our constantly breaking OSes and see the light!

Your ignorant, generic complaints that assume Linux is a corporate monolith that can just make things that work with your hardware, or that there should be one distro that behaves one way (the way that suits your personal use case, natch) don't even contribute to the discussions on this sub. You make no actual suggestions for improvement beyond "be better!" You don't know anything about the politics of community software so you don't even direct your ire at a useful place. You didn't get what you wanted from your distro, so you're settling for an anaemic attempt to cause drama instead.

Speaking of anaemic attempts at drama, isn't that what you're doing, Acolyte?

There is practical meat in this rant. See section 4 for four handy ways you can contribute to the Linux community.

Also, I'd like to end with a plea. Would the mods perhaps be up for considering a ban on "Linux is bad and you should feel bad" posts?

submitted by /u/drunken-acolyte
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