On Fri, Sep 16, 2016 at 02:19:00PM +1000, Ben Finney wrote:
> "Jeremy T. Bouse" <jbo...@debian.org> writes:
> >     I'll start off by saying I haven't read the whole thread and only
> > caught this because of the subject line change.
> I direct you to Russ's message in this thread that explains exactly why
> “customer” is a misleading term for the relationship being discussed, and:
> >     I'd have to ask how many of you actually have worked in large
> > enterprise environments? I've been working in both public and private
> > sector enterprise environments and the term "customer" is quite often
> > used to describe those whom we serve. Whether they are internal or
> > external customers and whether or not there is any payment involved.
> > The term merely means the consumer of the service we provide.
> and please read Russ's message for why that *is* a reasonable
> implication of “customer”, and is exactly why that's *not* the
> relationship the Debian project has with Debian recipients.
> >     Having a long winded debate over the use of a term takes away from
> > the ability of actually accomplishing anything so it is better served
> > to move on and address the issue rather than be pedantic about
> > definitions.
> If the distinction were inconsequential I would agree. It's not
> inconsequential, though, so that's why this is so valuable: it draws
> attention to the false and misleading idea that the Debian Project has a
> “customer” relationship with anyone.
> -- 
>  \      “I don't want to live peacefully with difficult realities, and |
>   `\     I see no virtue in savoring excuses for avoiding a search for |
> _o__)                        real answers.” —Paul Z. Myers, 2009-09-12 |
> Ben Finney

What about the term client? ;-)  No really, it lets you say things like:

  * The client privilege of a Debian user is freedom.
  * Debian clients will always receive free security updates from
    Debian's servers.
  * Anyone can be a Debian client.

And yes, I'm aware "client" is arguably also a cognitive construct of
capitalism, because it implies the transactional relationship
inculcated by everyday monetary transactions...but once someone
submits a bug to the BTS I think he/she can be called a client,
because the system has authorised a call with a response in the form
of a numbered ticket associated with an email record of the claim.
All bugs make a claim to the promise of [1].

My suspicion is that the points being made are related to different
interpretations of the idea:

  * Debian serves the community. [1]

Stay kind,

[1] The Debian design process is open to ensure that the system is of
the highest quality and that it reflects the needs of the user
community...a distribution is created based on the needs and wants of
the users rather than the needs and wants of the constructor.

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