Stephen Griffiths wrote:
> On Thu, 2009-10-29 at 10:48 +1030, David Gowers wrote:
>> It doesn't really matter that much to the developers *what* it is
>> called, as far as I know.
>> The point is really the branding... changing name will definitively
>> LOSE a lot of users, no matter what the current name is or the
>> intended name is.
>> There may be solutions to this problem (though commercially,
>> rebranding seems to involve a lot of expensive advertising). So far,
>> no-one has proposed one (or demonstrated that the current name is
>> problematic in an actual provable way -- just assertions that it is
>> offensive or not offensive in so-or-so region.).
>> All the above comprise a significant factor in why forks are regarded,
>> at best, as a necessary evil. All forks dilute branding, which
>> introduces user confusion and repels potential users.
>> So I do agree with one thing you said -- If you were to fork the
>> project you would need to do so really well. This would probably
>> involve forking the gimp-docs and gimp-gap similarly (and maybe also
>> FX-Foundry) in order to cover the 'gimp' references in these most
>> commonly installed accessories. It would also be important to make it
>> very clear that it is compatible with GIMP plug-ins, and therefore to
>> search GIMP's global plug-in/resource directories for resources as
>> well as the fork's plugin/resource directories (identifying and
>> ignoring duplicate resources). It would require the mascot to be
>> changed (and therefore also some of the icon set, as they include
>> Wilber), and also some (all?) of the gimp-docs screenshots, as well as
>> some of the example images in gimp-docs which use Wilber. It would
>> require a strategy for dealing with existing .gimp-2.7/ directories.
>> That's my understanding at a glance. Actually doing it well would be
>> more involved than the above, I expect. (for example, we use the
>> phrase 'happy GIMPing!' and similar verb-ing of the GIMP name.. so it
>> would help to have the replacement name be easily verb-able too)
> If we are going to have this conversation again and we will either until
> the name changes or the sun burns out, we should argue rationally.
> Pushing forward the idea that someone should fork the project insinuates
> that people are unhappy with the current leadership with all the skills
> it would require to maintain gimp, this is definitely not the case.  If
> a fork did occur, it only requires forking the application, even thought
> the plug-ins, docs etc are very valuable.
> If the argument for keeping the name is seriously that the project
> branding is valuable, why don't we write that in the FAQ?
> Would we seriously loose a lot of users if the name changed? are users
> attached to the name or the program? if we do suspect that users would
> not be able to associate the product with the name are there steps that
> we could take to mitigate this problem? There is another way this could
> go, which is that changing the name generates a lot of positive
> publicity and no doubt it would.  Hatred of the name generates negative
> publicity as it is.
> The name GIMP is not so invaluable that it cannot be changed, also there
> is a massive number of outsiders who find the name truly unappealing, I
> do not hear the raw of the people saying they love the name.
> Whether or not we are sick to death of this conversation it will keep
> coming back, because the arguments against the name are valid.
> regards,
> Stephen.
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When I mentioned "forking the project" I wasn't thinking of having a
version of GIMP out there that was actually following a fully separate
development path with a bunch of disgrunted GIMP developers. Rather, it
could be the exact same thing except with a patched-in configure option
or something that allowed rebranding. For example, in Gentoo (a source
based Linux distribution) when you compile Firefox, you can pass in an
"iceweasel" configure option that rebrands it with the Debian logos, or
you can pass in a "bindist" option that rebrands it with generic branding.

If the official GIMP developers (the people who own the repository)
don't want to change the name of GIMP, but half the users don't like the
name, then patching the code is the only option left for those users.
And this is one of the great things about open source software: if you
don't like something about a particular piece of software (like the
branding) you are at full liberty to change that piece of the software.

Anyway, if I myself was going to dedicate the time to doing this, I
would probably set up the forked/patched code in such a way so that the
user/distributor could decide at compile time what branding he wanted.

Christopher Howard

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