Yep, Alanna Irving is, at the very least.
Yes yes YES 100%, @Graham. I was struggling to respond with such grace and humility. I feel strongly, for myself and those I wish to advocate for – be they in academia, gov, nonprofits or equity-seeking communities – that I have a personal responsibility to pass through a point of using those proprietary tools on the way to the better world. And yes, that means sometimes for my own work. These closed tools are “winning” for a reason, and its not just by underhanded tactics, but because they’ve been tuned to assist people in easily meeting their daily challenges.
I have a friend who manages infra (god love him, he’ll prob log on here and read this eventually) who had criticized my cautious advocacy of Amazon S3 for some purposes, as traitorous and not worth using. But then he proudly claims to have never used it himself. I mean, heck, this thing is dominating mainstream business culture for a reason. Maybe we could build some project around it and better understand why it works for “5 nines” of people, and know what to expect/demand of the FOSS options?
I co-facilitated a consensus-building workshop at RightsCon last year. It’s a digital human rights conf. We needed a single divisive prompt for catalysing an opportunity for tough consensus-building amongst the 30 technologists, privacy advocates and human rights workers. We chose “How should we decide which tools to favour in our work?” There were huuuuge divisions in the room. In fact, we chose the prompt because even in preparing for the session, we as the facilitators had clashed repeatedly over tools. (Fwiw, the frontline workers were much less likely to be impassioned about FOSS.) But the most memorable quote from a front line advocate was basically "How dare you presume to tell me what tools will best serve my community in doing its work?”
This is all to say: some co-ops may want to continue using these tools to stay grounded in the realities of those they aspire to serve.
I say all this with love, and I appreciate that we’re oriented toward the same destination