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A diversity statement for Ubuntu

The Ubuntu website states that “we aim to make Ubuntu a wonderful place to participate”. We developed the Ubuntu Code of Conduct to set a standard for participants to accept each other in the spirit of cooperation, and have improved it over time to state these principles more clearly.

It is implicit in our philosophy that these and other Ubuntu values should hold equally true for everyone. I would like to propose that we upgrade this to an explicit statement on behalf of the project.

I have spoken with many people who were interested in joining a free software project, but were put off because they felt unwelcome. I know various people who participate in Ubuntu today, but sometimes face difficult social obstacles in order to do so. Going forward, I would like for us, as members of the Ubuntu community, to make the extra effort to accept all kinds of people. This may sound simple, but it can be very difficult to put into practice. People often don’t even notice they’ve gotten it wrong, until the offended party points it out to them. We need tools and guidance to make this a reality.

To that end, I would like to propose a diversity statement for Ubuntu. This draft has already received support from a majority of the Community Council, but I’d like to take it a step further. Because I want this to be a commitment that we can all stand behind, I’m also calling for support from the community as a whole. Please give this issue your consideration, and let me know in the comments if you can get on board with an official statement like this. The more support we have, the more real this commitment can be.

Here’s the text. Many thanks to Mary Gardiner, Valerie Aurora and Benjamin Mako Hill for their review and input.

The Ubuntu project welcomes and encourages participation by everyone. We are committed to being a community that everyone feels good about joining. Although we may not be able to satisfy everyone, we will always work to treat everyone well.

Standards for behavior in the Ubuntu community are detailed in the Code of Conduct and Leadership Code of Conduct. We expect participants in our community to meet these standards in all their interactions and to help others to do so as well.

Whenever any participant has made a mistake, we expect them to take responsibility for it. If someone has been harmed or offended, it is our responsibility to listen carefully and respectfully, and do our best to right the wrong.

Although this list cannot be exhaustive, we explicitly honor diversity in age, culture, ethnicity, genotype, gender identity or expression, language, national origin, neurotype, phenotype, political beliefs, profession, race, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, subculture, and technical ability.

Some of the ideas and wording for this statement were based on diversity statements from the Python community and Dreamwidth Studios (CC-BY-SA 3.0).

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Written by Matt Zimmerman

February 7, 2011 at 15:55

42 Responses

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  1. Please don’t get me wrong, I think it *is* very important that we treat people the best we can, but… to be honest, it kind of gets rediculous how there’s a new post like that about every few weeks, as if we needed any more statements like that and would not behave the way without them. Kind of like people that actually think there would be chaos if that weird book called bible didn’t say something about not killing other people. I think most people are actually very friendly within the free software community, and then there are some that are not, who might still contribute valueable work and won’t change their minds based off some statement on a website anyway.

    I know this sounds a bit negative on my side, this was not my intention…

    d2kx

    February 7, 2011 at 16:31

    • Thanks for your feedback.

      We’ve seen that relying on an implicit social contract isn’t enough, and have had some success with formally codifying the kind of community we want.

      If there weren’t a problem with the status quo, believe me, I wouldn’t be agitating for change. :-) Unfortunately, there is a seemingly endless stream of incidents in the community (not only in Ubuntu) which show that we can’t take this for granted.

      Matt Zimmerman

      February 7, 2011 at 16:47

      • I like your intentions on this, but I think it’s rather naïve to believe that such a statement would improve the kind of chronically socially inept people that typically cause those kind of problems.

        I concede that the Ubuntu CoC is wildly successful, it probably makes 95% of people who read it try to live up to it and be a better community member. For the rest, there’s probably nothing you can do for them. You just can’t fix everyone. #sadfactoflife

        Jonathan Carter

        February 7, 2011 at 22:48

    • d2kx, I was going to comment directly on the OP myself, but then I found that your comment already contained most things I had planned to write.

      Seriously, a diversity statement for a free software project? Next will be a call to appoint an equal opportunity official, I presume?! Better invest that free resources in tighter organization of the entire Ubuntu ecosystem. As has been stated before, the idea that a simple statement on a website (which 95% of people wouldn’t even read, for starters) would change the way people act is simply ludicrous:

      “I was planning to troll the Ubuntu forums with racist and sexist comments, flaunting my imaginary superiority 24/7… but then, unfortunately, I discovered the Ubuntu social contract – which explicitly says I can’t :(“

      Jens

      February 8, 2011 at 07:20

      • To respond to this and all of the other “but these are just words” comments:

        The document is merely a tool to get agreement on what kind of community we want to be. Naturally, it’s up to the members of the community to make it reality. That’s why I’m asking for support. This won’t work if it’s merely blessed by the government; people need to believe that it’s the right thing for the community.

        To your first point, this *is* investing in the Ubuntu ecosystem. That ecosystem isn’t made of bits, but of people, and so social issues are a very important part of Ubuntu’s success.

        Matt Zimmerman

        February 8, 2011 at 08:22

  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Matt Zimmerman, Penelope Stowe, Devilicus, Ubuntu World Wide, Arjan Waardenburg and others. Arjan Waardenburg said: Matt Zimmerman: A diversity statement for Ubuntu: The Ubuntu website states that “we aim to make Ubuntu a wonder… http://bit.ly/hjls4n […]

  3. Hi,

    I can definitely stand behind the sentiment expressed here. I am however a little unsure about

    We are committed to being a community that everyone feels good about joining.

    I think I can see the sentiment here, but I’m not sure that we can live up to it. There are some people who would not feel good about joining our community, not because of the way they would be treated, but because they don’t like the things that Ubuntu is doing. I can’t think of a better wording right now, and I may be the only one that reads it that way.

    Thanks,

    James

    James Westby

    February 7, 2011 at 16:48

    • Yes, I guess I took it as implicit that this applies to people who want to join. It’s a difficult balance though, and we don’t want to give ourselves too easy an excuse by excluding people who “don’t like the way we do things”.

      Here’s something I said to the CC when I proposed the idea:

      “As a community, we share many characteristics, in whole or in part. Some of these are fundamental, such as sharing the values of the project, like promoting free software. Others are not fundamental to our purpose, such as age, gender identity, biological traits, socioeconomic status, and so on.

      In order to promote inclusiveness, we should ensure that people who share our fundamental values are not deterred from contributing to the project simply because they happen to differ from the majority in other ways. In order to achieve this, we must both establish a consensus on inclusiveness within the project, and effectively communicate this outward to potential contributors.”

      Matt Zimmerman

      February 7, 2011 at 16:52

      • Rather than “can feel good about joining”, how about “feels welcome”? I think that variation works well: everyone can feel welcome, even if they don’t actually want to join.

        Anonymous

        February 7, 2011 at 17:31

      • Hi Matt,

        That’s good. I’d actually support some form of that in the statement itself if you think it is appropriate.

        Thanks,

        James

        James Westby

        February 7, 2011 at 17:37

  4. Thank you so much. Yes, we need this. I like the wording too, I guess it’s hard not making it sound too formal.

    Nicola Larosa

    February 7, 2011 at 16:59

  5. Even though statements like these all too often are simply paying lip service, I am still glad that the project is considering this. Putting it in writing gives us a standard to which we can be held accountable. While the words might not mean much on their own, making an explicit statement of our principles at least gives us something to strive towards. It’s up to all of us to ensure that our actions live up to our words.

    I do have one question though. Why not role this into the Code of Conduct itself? I’m not sure what’s more powerful, having this statement stand on its own not buried in with other topics or incorporating it into the document that all us Ubuntu members have explicitly committed to?

    andrewsomething

    February 7, 2011 at 17:46

    • It is very much my intent that this be a meaningful commitment, upheld by a sincere desire for a healthy community, and definitely not mere lip service. To this end, it does include some behavioral elements as well as statements of principle. If you feel this could be improved, I’m open to suggestions.

      Mako and I talked about it in relation to the code of conduct, and it’s still possible that it will end up there, though we want to keep that document short and to the point.

      I’m mainly concerned with getting consensus on the principle, and then we can worry about where exactly to publish and maintain it.

      Matt Zimmerman

      February 7, 2011 at 19:06

  6. I think the general sentiment is good, but there are people, like me for one, who the token word and policy of “Diversity” has meant an uphill battle for university admissions, scholarships, and even hiring.

    I worry that this policy will have the side effect of chasing away genuinely interested people, especially the unfortunate among us (like me) who are not considered “diverse” individuals.

    Kevin

    February 7, 2011 at 18:15

    • I realize some people may have negative associations with this and other political issues, but I feel strongly enough that it’s important that we need to overcome them.

      I would expect the normative parts of the statement to be pretty uncontroversial, e.g. responding to concerns in a respectful way, applying the rules to everyone equally, etc.

      Whoever you are, our goal is certainly not to chase you away. We want to welcome everyone, so long as they are willing to treat others in the project well.

      Matt Zimmerman

      February 7, 2011 at 19:04

  7. A general suggestion on wording, inspired by the comment Kevin made above: the word “Diversity” seems most often associated with efforts that don’t agree with the philosophy of this document. In particular, it often seems to have negative connotations, or at least the connotation of “we want the appearance of diversity”, or “we want to satisfy requirements for diversity”.

    I would suggest another choice of terminology, such as an “anti-discrimination policy”. That seems more to the point, in any case.

    Anonymous

    February 7, 2011 at 19:45

    • I guess I tend to want to state these things positively (what kind of community we want) rather than negatively (what kind of community we DON’T want). The Code of Conduct isn’t an anti-misbehavior policy.

      A negative definition makes sense for something like an anti-harassment policy, which targets a fairly specific issue, but for general community guidelines I definitely prefer positive wording.

      I’m not too attached to the naming; the important thing is to get consensus on the intent. If folks get behind that, it won’t matter what we call it. If they don’t, then a different name won’t help.

      Matt Zimmerman

      February 8, 2011 at 08:27

  8. One minor wording suggestion for this document: you say “If someone has been harmed or offended, it is our responsibility to listen carefully and respectfully, and do our best to right the wrong.”. I’d like to suggest that this should say “and do our best to right any wrong which has occurred.”.

    Rationale: If someone has been harmed, something wrong has *always* occurred. If someone has been offended, something wrong may have occurred. This makes it our responsibility to listen carefully and respectfully, find out if something wrong actually happened, and if so take steps to address it. I think the minor rephrasing I’ve suggested would avoid implying that something wrong has *always* happened if someone gets offended, while also preserving the statement that we will always listen carefully and respectfully to someone’s concerns and determine an appropriate response.

    Does that seem reasonable?

    Anonymous

    February 7, 2011 at 19:54

    • My intent would be for the offended party to be given the benefit of the doubt. It’s easy for someone with greater privilege in the community to overlook their own offense. It’s true that in some cases it may be a non-issue, but this kind of thing is in the eye of the beholder.

      I thought about adding something like that explicitly, but this wording seemed to get the idea across. I’m open to suggestions for better wording though.

      If I’m riding the subway and someone tells me I stepped on their foot, I don’t investigate whether I actually did or not. I just apologize to them. :-) The goal is not to try to establish truth, but to build a healthy culture where people treat each other well.

      Matt Zimmerman

      February 8, 2011 at 08:35

      • I agree entirely with your first two sentences; I tried to suggest a wording change that I thought would preserve that property.

        Regarding your last paragraph, sadly most issues that would encounter this policy prove more complex than stepping on someone’s foot. I don’t want to imply that many issues need extensive investigation rather than just a simple recognition and apology. I simply think it seems like a good idea to suggest that we first and foremost want to right any wrongs which have occurred, rather than automatically assuming that any instance of someone getting offended automatically means a wrong has occurred. At the same time, I want to avoid allowing that particular distinction turn into any implication that we won’t take every offense seriously and react appropriately. Thus, I intentionally avoided explicitly saying anything like “determine whether a wrong has occurred”, or any phrases with the same implication as “allegations”. I simply added the statement that we will “right any wrongs which have occurred”; I think that gives the strong impression that we’ll give the benefit of the doubt, and assume some wrong exists that needs righting, but it also allows for the possibility that no wrong may have occurred that we can right.

        Does that seem reasonable to you?

        Anonymous

        February 8, 2011 at 18:05

  9. The statement as given above is very good. If this becomes reality, how will it be enforced/dealt with? Will we require those seeking Ubuntu Membership to also sign a diversity statement? Will the offended be required to request assistance from the Community Council to get the wrong “righted”. What will decide when the wrong is now righted?

    Sorry, I don’t have these answers, but I think these and other questions will need answers for this to have meaning.

    Charlie Kravetz

    February 7, 2011 at 20:41

    • The CC has the authority to resolve social issues in the community where necessary, but in most cases they are (and should be) resolved between the people involved. My hope is certainly not for more problems to get escalated to the CC, but for individuals in the community to take responsibility for looking out for each other.

      I don’t think that it’s necessary for individuals to sign something like this statement, but I would like to see it ratified by the community somehow, whether formally or informally.

      Matt Zimmerman

      February 8, 2011 at 08:39

  10. I like that this is a positive statement of what we want our community to be. Diversity in the natural world is a sign of health, and diversity in our community will be a sign of health and strength.

    Speaking of signatures, when will signing the Leadership Code of Conduct be required of community leaders?

    Valorie Zimmerman

    February 8, 2011 at 09:08

    • IMO there is not really a need for explicitly signing it, as by accepting a “leadership” position you implicitly “sign” it… (but that’s just my view of course).

      Jan Claeys

      February 8, 2011 at 18:23

  11. Hi Matt,

    Thanks for taking up this subject. I totally agree with the need of an explicit statement of diversity to put into words what is now a tacit consensus for most of the members of our community. Building on top of the CoC and LCoC makes also sense.

    Regarding the wording I am not so sure, specially the “feel good about joining”. Also I like the CoC bullet-point like approach to show at first sight what we are trying to say. Not sure if that is possible with this statement, but we could probably try that?

    Great work!

    R.

    Rubén Romero

    February 8, 2011 at 11:30

  12. Just noting that I’m interested in and support implementing this idea. A greater expectation of diversity and inclusion in the community is almost certainly a positive.

    Daniel

    February 8, 2011 at 23:19

  13. This may sound stupid, but there’s a subset of people who really need to be “protected” by a diversity statement (and I’m not sure whether this goes far enough). People who choose to use Microsoft products as well as Linux/Open Source products.

    I realize that it doesn’t rank anywhere near the same level as race, sexual orientation, sex, creed, or the other common diversity classifications. However, people who are interested in trying out Ubuntu (and other Linux distros) may be put off by the disrespect paid to commercial and closed-source companies.

    It should be noted, that I don’t mean saying that it’s insecure or anything like that. I’m referring to comments like “M$, Micro$oft, Micro$Shill (or any variation with ‘Shi*”, Windoze, etc.) and telling people to just go back to their crappy OS if they don’t like (can’t do) something.

    Most of the great Generals would say (or have said) that you should respect your enemy (and you should show your enemy respect). It seems that the Open Source community (or at least subsets of it) have forgotten this rule, when it comes to Windows or Microsoft.

    Have a great day:)
    Patrick.

    Patrick Dickey

    February 8, 2011 at 23:37

    • If someone is trying to constructively participate in Ubuntu, the fact they’re also using some other product as well shouldn’t be a barrier.

      You do get people who want to use Ubuntu but are getting frustrated, and that comes out as “what is this sit? windows is much better” and that obviously sends the conversation downhill.

      Martin Pool

      February 9, 2011 at 06:03

  14. Matt,

    This is a wonderful step forward for the Ubuntu community and hopefully for Free software as a whole. Anyone who doesn’t already know that Free software suffers from a lack of diversity isn’t paying attention. Thank you for doing this and for taking the time to respond thoughtfully to the privileged people who will undoubtedly be offended by this work.

    Greg Boggs

    February 9, 2011 at 04:20

  15. I think this ought to go into the code of conduct. There’s a great deal of overlap in intentions, and it seems to be mostly expanding and being more explicit about particular aspects. Leaving it out causes me, and apparently others, to wonder why: is it not quite as important? Do you think people wouldn’t agree? Is the CoC not able to be amended?

    The Ubuntu project welcomes and encourages participation by everyone

    This is not quite true; some people have been banned in the past and others likely will be in the future. Trolls do exist. (And people also exist who are angry or frustrated but still want to do good.)

    The point is more that people who want to get constructive things done will be made welcome, and not discriminated-against because of irrelevant factors. I think we need better phrasing that reflects that. Ubuntu is a place people can get things done.

    One thing I like here is that it’s not just “we don’t ban $subset” and not even just “we won’t make jokes about $subset” but “we will positively make people welcome.” This is great because it’s both aiming high for inclusiveness, and also something that’s great for everybody.

    Martin Pool

    February 9, 2011 at 05:57

    • It’s possible that this could be integrated into the CoC, yes, and I’ve discussed that possibility a bit with Mako. I have prepared a small patch to the code of conduct which aligns with this, but does not replace it.

      In my view, it’s at least partly orthogonal: it states that the code of conduct, and our other principles, should apply to everyone equally. As such, it may not belong embedded in those other statements of principles. I’m not too fussed about how the content is organized, though. It’s more important that we say what needs to be said, and mean* it.

      Yes, I certainly do not intend to imply that people are welcome even if they are destructive. It is more about giving people a chance in the first place, and keeping our preconceptions in check.

      It’s risky to judge people based on whether we think they *will* be constructive or not. I would rather give them a chance, and if necessary judge them on what they actually do.

      Matt Zimmerman

      February 9, 2011 at 12:01

      • Yes, absolutely give people a fair go. Unnecessary attempts to predict whether or not they’re going to turn out well are unnecessary, liable to be biased, and a waste of time for all involved.

        Martin Pool

        February 10, 2011 at 03:30

  16. I’m pleased to see this statement.

    A quibble: the paragraph with “we explicitly honor diversity …” strikes a false note for me. One should honour achievement; the point rather is that we want diversity, and so we value being made up of people who differ in all of these ways. The list of diversities itself is a bit odd: e.g., “genotype, …, neurotype, phenotype” made me wonder briefly if there is some private joke being made that I do not get. The list would benefit from being slimmed down.

    I’ve posted this call as an Advogato article.

    Charles Stewart

    February 9, 2011 at 07:44

    • I would have to agree with you about the honoring achievement. Maybe word it something like this

      “We honor achievement based on it’s value to the community and Ubuntu as a whole, without consideration or regards to the age, culture, ethnicity, genotype, gender identity or expression, language, national origin, neurotype, phenotype, political beliefs, profession, race, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, subculture, and technical ability of the individual(s) making the achievement.”

      You can substitute other things in with (or in place of) achievement–such as the participation, inspiration, or even contribution.

      Have a great day:)
      Patrick.

      P.S. If this doesn’t make sense, I blame it on the fact that I just got off work, and have been up since 3:30 pm yesterday. :)

      Patrick Dickey

      February 9, 2011 at 11:48

    • Certainly we value achievement, but this statement is about something different: valuing people. Not just because of what they achieve, but of who they are, what they bring to the conversation, and their potential.

      The list is purely illustrative, and could be condensed or restructured without changing the fundamental message.

      With all due respect for the analytical tendencies of my audience (which I share), at this point I am more interested in hearing feedback on the principle rather than the wording of the document. ;-)

      Matt Zimmerman

      February 9, 2011 at 11:55

  17. I welcome your statement about diversity, and I think it is much needed.

    Particularly, when the author of the very first comment regarding it, seems unable to express their views without resorting to comments such as:

    ‘Kind of like people that actually think there would be chaos if that weird book called bible didn’t say something about not killing other people.’

    I consider it ironic given the topic that they are commenting upon.

    Onesimus

    February 9, 2011 at 11:57

  18. I like the proposed Ubuntu Diversity Statement with two exceptions.

    First is the use of the word “offend” in the third paragraph. For instance, if
    my objection, right or wrong, to the word “offend” offends someone, does that
    make me guilty of something? One should only be held responsible for one’s own
    behavior, not for someone else’s feelings. Otherwise, we are all hostage to
    what others chose to find offensive. Of course, common sense and compassion for
    others are necessary for civility, but these qualities are hard mandate.

    Second I oppose the last paragraph:

    Although this list cannot be exhaustive, we explicitly honor diversity in
    age, culture, ethnicity, genotype, gender identity or expression, language,
    national origin, neurotype, phenotype, political beliefs, profession, race,
    religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, subculture, and
    technical ability.

    My reason to opposing this last paragraph is not that I am in favor of
    intolerance but because:

    1.) The statement makes no sense. Do I “honor” Susan because she is Hispanic
    and poor? Do I honor John because he is male, rich and White? If everyone so
    honors everyone else does the word “honor” have any meaning? Hopefully there
    are better reasons to honor people (or not).

    2.) While tolerance is an admirable quality, one has to ask does every
    “political belief” or “culture” deserves to be protected? Even intolerant ones?
    I know that this is not the intention of the statement, but the last paragraph
    does open up a can of worms.

    3.) While the sentiments most people read into the last paragraph are
    admirable, often innocent words can become captive to those who seek to control
    our language and ultimately us. I am not the only one here who mentions that
    “diversity” is often code for racial or gender preference. It may not be fair
    to the English language or to those who support diversity in its true meaning,
    but this is reality (or at least a perceived reality of a nontrivial number of
    people).

    In the end it is our good will, judgment, courage and integrity that will
    actually protect the Ubuntu community, not codified good intentions. Matt
    Zimmerman alludes to a “seemingly endless stream of incidents” that has
    motivated the writing of this diversity statement. My guess is that flaming and
    general lack of civility is more of a problem than bigotry, but I am not aware
    of most of what Matt sees. It may be that a statement is needed (I like most of
    what is in this statement), but I would hope for a more apolitical “civility
    statement” rather than a “diversity statement”. While I have some doubts that
    civility can be successfully and fairly codified and enforced as policy, I
    admire Matt’s effort. I also thank him for his work of “manning the barricades”
    and helping to discourage inappropriate behavior.

    Marc Mehlman

    February 9, 2011 at 22:12

  19. I think the statement is nice but if it doesn’t reflect the community in actual fact, it becomes worthless. There probably should be more effort placed on actually embracing diversity through action and reaching out rather than what amounts to “Please don’t be a jackass” stuffed somewhere on a website.

    Christopher Warner

    February 18, 2011 at 23:45

  20. […] quite a bit in the Ubuntu community is fostering a diverse UDS. There is the newly proposed Diversity Statement and Anti-Harrassment Statement, and as part of that, there have been several meetings aimed at […]

  21. […] ia7search_color_link="#0000FF";var ia7search_color_text="#000000"; Matt Zimmerman has proposed a diversity statement for Ubuntu. The following is taken from his latest blogpost:The Ubuntu […]

  22. I’m coming in very late on this, but I would like to briefly comment. While it looks good in itself, I’m wondering if it goes far enough. Specifically, I realize that my concern isn’t directly related, but I think it needs to be taken into account.

    I’m a Debian user and have had limited experience with Ubuntu. Part of the reason why is a matter of preference, but it’s also because I feel somewhat left out. Specifically, I’m totally blind and use speech access. While it’s good that Ubuntu includes Gnome Orca on the live CD, it’s very difficult for me to know how to start it since the boot menu is totally silent. I find it ironic that the instructions are clearly outlined on various web sites, but one can’t start the screen reader which makes the machine accessible because one can’t see the screen.

    Along a similar line, I know that Debian includes Speakup both in the installer and as part of the kernel. Speakup is a console screen reader that is now in staging for kernels 2.6.37 and up and was a patch which could be applied to older kernels. Ubuntu seems to not include it in any installers, at least not when I looked last. This includes the alternate and server editions. While there are blind people who have jobs working on servers, they would either need a serial console or sighted assistance to use Ubuntu, unlike with Debian.

    Now, you may wonder what this has to do with your blog post. Directly, it doesn’t because you’re talking about how people are treated on the mailing lists and such. However, I feel that it does apply indirectly because everyone has their own special needs and I find that many developers don’t take them into account. There are still debates about why accessibility features for the blind have been integrated into Debian, even years later. I sometimes feel like developers either can’t or won’t take the time to consider the blind, while realizing that every other disability has a completely different set of issues. In other words, I realize that no one can possibly take every disability into account and a deaf person has completely different needs than I do, but I feel that there needs to be more general awareness that disabled people also want to use free software. Currently, the majority of blind people use Windows and won’t even try a live CD because it doesn’t boot up talking and they’re unsure if there is a screen reader available or not. The Vinux live CD in the only exception. Obviously, it is undesirable to have a live CD always talk, but a beep or spoken message telling the blind when it’s booted would be helpful, similar to the Debian installer.

    I will close by saying that I have not looked at Ubuntu for a couple releases now for the above reasons, and I apologize if my comment is off topic or out of place. If you have any specific questions, I will be happy to discuss this further. As a final example of people being unaware, I have a hard time accessing the last UDS presentations because they all seem to be on YouTube or other video sites. I can access them, but it’s a little difficult. Downloadable video or audio archives, as was done in the past would make things easier. I’m sorry for taking up a lot of your time.

    Tony

    March 11, 2011 at 12:46

    • You’re absolutely right that there is much more to inclusiveness than interpersonal behavior, though that’s the only part we’ve tried to address with this statement.

      It is our intention that Ubuntu Desktop Edition be installable and usable by people who require a screen reader, and the documentation for this is at https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Accessibility/doc/StartGuide

      Unfortunately, it looks like this has regressed in 10.10 compared to 10.04 LTS, which I didn’t realize until now, and will see what can be done for 11.04.

      As far as I know, there hasn’t been an equivalent effort to provide screen reading functionality in Server Edition, and I’m even less familiar with the issues there.

      Matt Zimmerman

      March 12, 2011 at 13:16


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