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Monday, 24 June 2019 07:31

PC warriors expect Torvalds to follow in the papal tradition

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PC warriors expect Torvalds to follow in the papal tradition Image by Clker-Free-Vector-Images from Pixabay

When people come to the point where they consider the use of the word "bull***t" as abuse, things have indeed come to a pretty pass. The British tech website, The Register, apparently considers that Linux creator Linus Torvalds must only use honorifics and sees his use of this word as good reason to write 600 words in the hope of clicks.

When Torvalds was prone to swear at, and abuse, his fellow developers, stories were merited. But this latest bid by The Register for clickbait resembles very much the acts of low-life London tabloid paparazzi who stood around looking for signs of cellulite whenever the late Princess Diana left the gym.

Are people really so desperate for clicks that they think this kind of language a hanging offence?

Even the writer of this trite tale downplays it at the start by saying, "by his (Torvalds') standards this most recent rant of his is relatively restrained". Really? Using the word bull***t is considered a rant? In which century is The Register anchored?

Walk into any British pub and you will be hard put to find people who utter a single sentence which is not laced with profanity. The same happens in the British corporate world – only out of sight of the cameras and the media. So what is the big deal about someone in the field of software uttering a common word like this?

Of course, this lead-in gives the website a change to rehash all the happenings of the past and make an entire mountain range out of a molehill. I dare say the author himself must be using much more unparliamentary language day in and day out.

But when it is Torvalds, he is expected to be a sadhu, St Linus of Finland, who only uses language akin to a papal benediction to communicate with the people who develop the Linux kernel along with him. Political correctness has not just gone mad, it has gone stark, raving crazy.

In all honesty, The Register does not do its own reputation much good by flimsy stories like this. 

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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