This has been a problem for two decades now ("old-school" internet culture being under constant attack, that is), but it's really starting to become a major pain in the ass.
Audacity, a long-established, high-quality and immensely popular cross-platform sound editor was recently "acquired" by Muse Group for, I'm sure, completely altruistic and not-at-all greedy, underhanded and privacy-invading reasons. Naturally the very first thing the new owner of the formerly free software ("free as in freedom," not "free as in beer" which is its current status) was to add "anonymous" data collection functionality and restrict usage of the software to people aged 13 or older (sorry kids, no audio editing for you; get rekt skrubs). Notably, there's no option in the user interface to disable this data collection. It's auto opt-in, and they ain't lettin' you opt-out.
Understandably (and justifiably) this upset quite a few people. I'm among them. When I record or edit audio, I want to record or edit audio, not transmit anonymous usage statistics to some random asshole on the internet for analysis. There's a quick-and-dirty technological fix for this stupidity – block network access (completely), inbound and outbound, for the Audacity executable and processes in your firewall. But we shouldn't have to do that.
Fortunately, GPL-licensed open source software affords us a better technological solution to software takeovers by openly hostile actors: we can just fork the last legitimate version of the software and carry on developing it separately. Several people have done exactly that.
The fork that appeared to be gaining at least a little momentum and a germination of community support was called Tenacity. Unfortunately, one of the people ostensibly in charge of the project is an absolute drama queen with an old axe to grind (he, like many boring people, hates 4chan because he has no sense of humor). He's got a track record going back years of saying absolutely insane things, and he's demonstrated extraordinary incompetence in his development efforts to fork Audacity:
- CMake builds are broken now
- Some locales/translations have vanished
- After installation, only English is available in the application
- They appear to have broken CI/CD for now
- The default build configuration crashes on Linux
- They've somehow broken auto-detection of ffmpeg
He's much more focused on politics (both in general and in this software project, because apparently your audio editor needs you to know that Trump is bad for some fucking reason) than he is on software development, and it shows.
Naturally the moment people began asking even the easiest, most gentle questions about his qualifications and motives, he exploded into full victim mode and proclaimed he was suddenly receiving death threats, hundreds of phone calls and even claimed someone showed up to his house to try to kill him.
... lolwut ...
One poster from Kiwi Farms summarized the "controversy" succinctly:
This CookieEngineer person has clearly had a bug up their arse about 4chan for years and gleefully exploited the opportunity to be the victim.
Crazy person does crazy shit. Whatever. What really bothers me about this is ... that it actually worked. The claims are ridiculous and exaggerated: 600 phone calls? Someone trying to kill you? Really? Over some stupid trolling about a name? 6 phone calls I could believe. Someone putting a box of shit in your mailbox I could believe. But this? Extraordinary claims require at least some evidence.
He really wants us to believe that some trolling over a stupid name escalated to a murder attempt because 4chan people are in fact not people at all but being of pure evil and malice, sent by the dark lord of hell Trump himself, with hearts blacker than the blackest black times infinity. FACT!
This does not pas [sic] my sniff test at all, and I'm sick with 16 corona mutations. And even the most casual of looks will reveal it's full of shit.
Yet many people seem to gobble it up uncritically, even smart people. It's not even that I like 4chan: they're a bunch of idiots. But this is just stupid.
While I disagree with the assertion that 4chan is a bunch of idiots (they are a bunch of skilled idiots, thank you very much), this otherwise hits it on the nose.
"CookieEngineer," having made his grandiose claims of unimaginable abuse at the hands of ... somebody? ... with no proof provided of course, made a dramatic exit from the project because he just couldn't handle the immense stress ... of forking an open-source project and renaming it. And he blames his failures on "the trolls" and "the naht-zees." Because of course he does.
In response to this hilarious stupidity, some 4channers spun up their own fork of Audacity and called it Sneedacity. And they're making decent progress on it too. This is hilarious. If you don't find it hilarious (or at least gave it a sensible chuckle), go away and get a sense of humor. It'll help you get through life a lot less painfully.
The whole "sneed" thing inexplicably infuriates a bizarre cross-section of humorless people, and I genuinely don't understand why on this one. It's a fucking Simpsons reference, and an old one at that! Despite that, people are screeching at maximum volume about the name itself being "hate speech" (lolwut). In response, Github has "hidden" the project – it doesn't show up in searches even if you explicitly search for it by name. You have to know its URL to reach it. Idiots.
Furthering the stupidity, Arch's "AUR" repository – a pile of community-managed build scripts for software that Arch itself doesn't include in its own curated repositories – has decided to ban Sneedacity for "hate speech."
I'm sick of this. And I'm looking forward to switching to Sneedacity at the first opportunity and encouraging everyone I know to switch to it as well. Because fuck these humorless dolts who try to tear down everything they hate (which is pretty much everything). Maybe they should focus on getting Tenacity to actually fucking build and run properly before they start slinging mud at other forks that are blowing them out of the water.
And shame on Github and Arch for aiding and abetting censorship.