What's really stupid about the whole thing is that RMS just had to shut up on this issue for five or six years and everyone else would eventually figure it out.
The Linux kernel is easily replaceable, but it's harder to do without the GNU system software. It can be done, but it's less pleasant by far. People WOULD figure this out; with the huge number of Linux kernel issues these days, more and more folks are realizing that the kernel can be swapped for something else without as much pain as they'd think. All RMS had to do was just be patient, and everything would have worked out.
But, instead, he insisted on renaming someone else's project, and on top of THAT, forcing the name of HIS software in front. (that single thing probably irked people more than anything else.) So of course he ran into hostility. Now, the GPL3 is coming under significant fire, and I guaran-damn-tee you one of the primary reasons the Linux devs have been so vocal that it's bad is because they feel that RMS tried to hijack their project.
The truth would have come out on its own; his insistence on naming rights badly damaged the community, as can be seen with the heated vitriol over GPL3. He made enemies out of people who were on his side, and has made life a little harder on all of us.
It's hard to tell yet, but he MIGHT have traded away GPL3's success to get some people to use a term he liked. If that's how it works out, it was a very bad bargain.
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