back to article Canonical responds to 'abusive' Ubuntu posts

Administrators overseeing Ubuntu mailing lists are taking steps to thwart and apparent rash of un-Ubuntu-like behavior. Canonical is investigating what has been reported as "abuse" and "intimidation" of unnamed members of the Ubuntu community email lists. The investigation will produce a set of guidelines that will help decide …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Member moderation

    ..just do what the likes of Tek-Tips do. Have a red flag. People can mark an inapropriate message and then mods decide if it's out of line or not. Persistant offenders get banned.

    As for death threats. FFS don't let the mods (or owners) deal with this, we have a thing called the Police for such matters. In many countries a death threat is illegal, even if in a posting. A few police kicking in the door of the sad wanker's bedroom, will soon stop him.

    That is of course depends if he is either a) on CCTV, b) they can get his DNA or c) he is a terrorist with an ID card.

  2. jake Silver badge

    Gee, you think?

    "Tech forums and communities in general can have a reputation for sharp and abusive language. Sometimes that can be a simple clash of egos, but there have been genuine attempts to intimidate people."

    The more things change, the more they stay the same.

    If you feed the trolls, they are yours for life.

    It's only text ... Grow up and teach your wetware to filter. It should be taught in school.

  3. Humph


    Para. 12: ...define "Ubuntu" [a]s an African concept of "humanity towards others".

  4. Seán

    Trolls built the tubes

    If my behaviour ever starts to become "acceptable" I'll just blow my head off and be done with it.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    This is bound to be the recent mono thread on devel- discuss which was full of paranoia.

  6. Anonymous Coward

    Humanity towards others?

    According to Verity Stob, Ubuntu is actually an African word that means "I can't install Debian".

  7. Pierre Cazenave

    @ Evil Graham

    Shouldn't that be:

    "Ubuntu" -- an African word, meaning "Slackware is too hard for me".

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Abusive comments from a Linux community?

    Abusive comments from a Linux community?

    Can't imaging that - although every time I have asked a question on a Linux support forum I have got an answer along the lines of:

    "Fuck off loser - if you don't even know how to do that then you are too fucking stupid to use {$LinuxDistro} so go back and suck Bill Gate's cock!"

  9. mrmond


    EvilGraham: Ubuntu is actually an African word that means "I can't install Debian".

    I thought it meant "I don't like Debian" ;-)

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ubuntu forum experiences...

    by and large, I've found them to be really helpful - especially the Absolute Beginner section. I've had more problems in the Fedora and Slackware ("stfu n00b - go back to your Kool-Aid bitch" - original. Do they have a secret wiki with standard insults...) forums to be honest. The posts from EvilGraham, Pierre Cazanave and mrmond are all quite amusing - in a snorting geek kind of way - but also illustrate *why* Linux hasn't been more successful than perhaps it should have been.

  11. The Fuzzy Wotnot


    "The Debian Community in 2008 saw women developers threatened by an individual with a grudge who claimed women were "killing" free software. The year before, systems interface and design blogger Kathy Sierra quit the blogosphere, saying she'd received death threats for her posts."

    Irrespective of subject discussed, if you have this kind of attitude in the 21st century, it's pretty safe assume that you have obviously not been taking your meds! The men in white suits need to come out with their big butterfly net, revoke your care-in-the-community order pronto, before someone makes an 18 rated horror flick about your antics!

  12. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

    Inappropriate comments on Reg. forums?

    Humour aside, Can I claim the comments on the alternative meaning of Ubuntu as abuse? They are dis'ing my technical ability as a committed Ubuntu user.

    I could do both Debian and Slackware, but basically I haven't the time. I use Ubuntu because it needs little time, not because I am technically naive (and also because it returns a superior user experience).

    My cost is the one with the picture in the inside pocket of 30 years of Unix and Linux documentation on a shelf at home.

  13. Doug Glass

    Cry Babies R Free

    Are those lowlife incompetent oxygen-wasting slugs really that fucking sensitive?

  14. mrmond


    The remark was purely to be tongue in cheek .

    I do use ubuntu purely ecause it's easier than debian with things like multimedia,and initial setup.

    I have used debian,mandriva,suse,fedora in the past and stick with what I like best.

    I have used linux since 1998 and am always telling people how easy it is to use these days.

    Certainly if you have compatible hardware it easier to set up than windows.

    I don't think I put people off. I extolled Tuxpaint to someone yesterday (tuxpaint day 7 year anniversary)

    and they installed it for their kid.

    Opensource and ANY version of linux is great.

  15. Mike 35

    Linux is popular because.....

    It's a sub-cullture

    People *think* they are doing something different

    People *think* they are doing something better

    To continue this you have to exclude the "normals", you either to this overtly (you're stupid) or covertly (it's magic/secret) you woudn't understand, both happen.

    The people who say that Linux is so much better than mainstream actually don't want it mainstream, like a bunch of Emos you're all the same because you think you're different.

    It's just an OS FFS not a lifestyle

  16. Chris Jones 3

    This is now all fixed!

  17. Adam Salisbury


    The only way to rid yourself of Troll infestation will come when we can literally, rather than figuratively, flame the sad tossers!

  18. Chris Jones 3


    wrong story to comment on, I meant to go for the one about HP.

  19. Wrenchy


    I'm hearing a lot of crying about how linux is "so hard to use". If you people are so goddamn incompetent that you're having trouble, YOU SHOULD STICK TO OSX.... Because it "Just works" (except when it doesn't). Trained monkey's can be taught to point and click. Now leave me and my superior intellect alone as I recompile my custom Linux kernel to do magical things in the land of Fantasia!

    No really, I too have seen things like this where fanaticism will overwhelm someone to say inappropriate things. Newbies feel intimidated by the comments of some ignorant bullies when they pose honest questions on a board. This should not happen regardless of your camp of choice. Win/Lin/Mac. Although it is fun at times to poke fun at other OS's, we must remain professional with our comments and foster goodwill and help to all that need it.

    PS: Steve Jobs can suck by balls.

  20. Bruce 9
    Gates Horns

    Rule #1 has been broken

    Rule #1 has been violated!

    Rule #1: All abuse must be directed towards Microsoft!!

    Rule #2: Those contemplating abusing Linux will be banned. (See Rule #1)

  21. Henry Wertz 1 Gold badge

    @AC 10:02

    @AC 10:02, sounds like you were in a gentoo forum to me hahaha.

    But seriously, I've found the Ubuntu forums friendlier than most... it sounds like Canonical's trying to keep it that way and keep the trolls out.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo

    To the poor souls suffering abuse...

    The reason why you are being told off as n00bs, etc. is because your posts DEMAND assistance, rather than asking it nicely... You forget you are talking to hobbyists! So why would anyone respond to you nicely on their lunch break when you're like "this effing thing doesn't install, haven't you seen how windows does it" ?

  23. Charles Manning

    I got censored!

    I commented on this, but it looks like it must have offended some raw Reg nerve, so I'll repost more touchy feely.

    What is very ironic is that Ubuntu is a word and concept from a very sexist culture. The good will in ubuntu is really directed at men more than at women.

    Men run the place and women do the menial work.

    Men talk, think and make decisions, women don't.

    So if a woman gets offended on a ubuntu forum, it is odd to expect the idea of ubuntu to give her a fair heaqring.

  24. elderlybloke

    An anonymous coward - June 17 @10.02

    I don't recall ever seeing anything on the Ubuntu Forums about going to be affectionate with Bill Bates.

    I think that OC above is suffering from a form of delusion combined with dyslexia .

    Forgive him he knows not what he does.

  25. Martin Owens


    Ubuntu has been one of the better communities precisely because of things like the Code of Conduct. It does help to be made aware of the conditions of being a part of the community.

    Although I know some people who would argue that the CoC does nothing, I say it does plenty, just not with batons and tazers.

  26. The Jase


    Reminds me of when I am googling windows solutions and some tosspot writes "you should switch to <insert OS here>", thats not an answer dipshit!

    If newbs have a question, the old men should make an effort to help, rather than flaming them down.

  27. Anonymous Coward

    @Mac Phreak - Snorting Geek?

    Au contraire mate - I was only quoting El Reg's very own Verity Stob, who wrote that in a recent article (which was far funnier than anything I could write).

    I don't have any personal opinion on the issue at all. I've got Mac, Ubuntu and Windows machines, which means - judging from the comments on here - that I have to go and suck my own balls.

  28. A J Stiles
    Thumb Down

    @ AC 10:02

    Then you were doing it wrong. See here:

    Bear in mind:

    * On the Internet, nobody can see your dress or personal grooming. All they can judge you by is your spelling and grammar, content and tone. And believe me, they will judge you -- a misplaced apostrophe can be a far greater faux pas than wearing the wrong sort of shoes.

    * What sort of a response would you expect to get if you called a vet and said "my animal isn't very well", without mentioning what kind of animal it is or what symptoms it is showing? What sort of a response whould you expect from a garage, if you said "my car isn't right" without mentioning a make, model and details of the fault? Well, don't expect it to be any different with your computer.

    * Many people in the Open Source Community are doing it out of the goodness of their own hearts, or at least out of a deep-seated conviction that they are doing someone else a favour. The fact of not getting paid for it might also inform their responses to some extent.

    * If you aren't showing some measure of willing to help yourself -- at least a search on the Internet -- then expect short shrift. Demanding that other people go out of their way to help you while you sit on your backside doing nothing but whinge makes you look like a leech.

    * When you have fixed your problem, post about it afterwards on your own blog. That means there's one more site for the next person to find who goes searching for help with the same problem you had. And if you asked for help on a mailing list or newsgroup, post there (1) to let people know your problem is solved and (2) to say thank you to whoever helped.

  29. The Jase
    Paris Hilton


    " Many people in the Open Source Community are doing it out of the goodness of their own hearts, or at least out of a deep-seated conviction that they are doing someone else a favour. The fact of not getting paid for it might also inform their responses to some extent"

    And therein lies the problem. If an MS product gives me a lot of trouble, I can phone MS and get it sorted. if *nix screws up, I wait for a hobbiest to have a go.

    Then again:

    you get what you pay for,

    if you pay peanuts, etc, etc, etc

  30. A J Stiles

    @ The Jase

    And therein lies the problem. If an MS product gives me a lot of trouble, I can phone MS and get fobbed off and told just to re-install Windows.

    Fixed it for you :)

  31. jake Silver badge

    @The Jase

    "If an MS product gives me a lot of trouble, I can phone MS and get it sorted."


    I've been in the industry for a third of a century. I work on any & all hardware, and any & all operating systems, and any & all applications (except pre-OSX Apple gear). I have NEVER, not once, ever, been able to get telephone help from Microsoft. Gawd/ess knows I've tried occasionally, I probably have over a hundred fifty phone hours with them, but they have NEVER been helpful ... Mind you, my issues have been a trifle more complicated than "how do I print" or "I just downloaded pR0n^Wa picture, how do I view it?" ... Shit, I can even still get real-time telephone support for DEC gear running TOPS-10, but Microsoft? Faggedaboudit.

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