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    …is this being referred to as “off topic” because people are being political or just because the tag is wrong? Tags can change, right? An article about a system widely used for software hosting is just as topical as most posts in this community.

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      It’s borderline.

      Reasons for marking it as off-topic: it’s a second hand source with clickbait titling, it’s internal business practices at one company, it really isn’t specific to “computing”.

      Reasons for it being regarded as on-topic: it’s “consumer info” regarding a service many here might be familiar with, the debate regarding tech worker activism is interesting to many.

      Edited I initially flagged it off-topic but removed my flag.

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        And it’s an article on the register, which has many speculative/charged words to say about the actual change, which is documented in this merge request: https://gitlab.com/gitlab-com/www-gitlab-com/commit/b5a35716deb4f63299a23a40510475f5503c11c4

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          Exactly. Submissions from El Reg (as well as venues like TechCrunch) start with an initial negative on-topic score from me :)

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        Almost certainly the former. This is an article about a business practice by a software company - I think definitely within lobsters’ purview - and I think it’s being downvoted by people who expect the discussion about it to be contentious. Which it probably would be, because the thread about this article on hn is 900+ comments long last I checked and made me personally mad. :)

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          I’m in the camp that thinks we need to have very serious talks about ethics in software engineering, but that’s not really what lobste.rs wants to be about and in this case is even just going to be a discussion about Gitlab in particular. So I’m downvoting it for exactly the reason you said. Hellthread comments are welcome on the HN thread.

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            “ethics can certainly be important but i don’t want to see it discussed here because it may disturb me” is both an expression of extreme privilege and a very short-sighted stance.

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              Every time I convince myself that inviting more political discussion on Lobste.rs is a good idea - “it will be fine! Everyone will be civil and there’ll be a frank exchange of views, and we’ll move forward as a group!” - a comment such as yours reminds me there will always be people who twist other’s words and argue in bad faith.

              Edit added words

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                (…) I think it’s being downvoted by people who expect the discussion about it to be contentious. (…)

                I’m in the camp that thinks we need to have very serious talks about ethics in software engineering, but that’s not really what lobste.rs wants to be about and in this case is even just going to be a discussion about Gitlab in particular. So I’m downvoting it for exactly the reason you said.

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                  Here’s the quote from @gthm again, with my emphasis this time

                  I’m in the camp that thinks we need to have very serious talks about ethics in software engineering, but that’s not really what lobste.rs wants to be about […]

                  This is what you took from that sentence

                  “ethics can certainly be important but i don’t want to see it discussed here because it may disturb me”

                  It’s clear from @gthm’s words that they’d like to discuss these questions, but they are currently considered off-topic on Lobste.rs. So instead of passive-aggressively attacking them, you should raise this issue with the community, like here:

                  https://lobste.rs/s/s1gzie/adding_politics_related_tag

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                As @gerikson has already said, what I meant to say was that I think ethics are worthy of discussion, but as I interpret the mood on this site they’re off topic. I’m sorry I didn’t say that precisely enough.