> Try purposefully and consequently associating a bad word (e.g. 'slaver',
> 'pig') with a given minority at work to see what happens.
I have no idea why you keep bringing this strange analogy up... How is that in any way similar? What "minority" is being insulted here? The "minority" of proprietary software? I'm pretty sure that's like calling a white male a "honkey"; no one cares or is insulted, including the white male in question!
> Words have meanings
Yes they do, and I already pointed you to a dictionary documenting some of those collequial/metaphorical meanings as being well established and accepted by most people in the world...
> To me that is just the same cheap game of 'associate something you don't
> like with something that outrages people to get a bigger response' that
> is also played with 'think about the children'. Except this one is
> played by key FOSS advocates, associating 'proprietary software' with
And, here I somewhat agree with you... It's kind of silly, and surely there's a better metaphor... (The "rent vs. own" concept seems to work well...) However, at the same time, I also think it's silly to get all worked up over a commonly used term as if it were the most offensive thing ever uttered by another human being... It's not offensive in any way that I can see... It's just silly...
> I can tell you, most sincerely, that I very much object such use. It
> appalled me the first time I read such language in a book (more than 10
> years ago), and it appalls me still.
Well, ok, at least you're consistent... But, I still find it somewhat crazy that anyone would take offense to such a commonly used term... As someone else pointed out, it strikes me as exactly as ridiculous as RMS going all super-offended about the modern use of "piracy"... Or, someone religious getting offended over calling background server processes "daemons"... Or, once we had a customer call in VERY offended that one of our error messages mentioned something about killing a child process; apparently, they had recently lost their child, and felt the error message was insensitive to their tragic loss... We also had someone call in to complain about a message that said a command was "invalid", because they read it as the noun form of the word, and they were disabled, so felt insulted by the message...