noted by on 2007-05-31 at 15:04 EDT:
Some find the term "Coon" offensive. Having lived my entire life with a surname that is a homonym for this racial slur, I can tell you with strong anecdotal evidence that the word itself does make many people, particularly those who grew in areas of the USA where the slur was commonly used.
I can't easily change my own surname, so I live with it, but there is no reason to use this word unnecessarily, particularly when it is even spelled the same as the offensive racial slur.
I'm all for making people uncomfortable when pursing a greater good -- like raising awareness for a political cause or a moral issue. However, this is offending people just to make a (frankly very) lame joke. Why bother? Why not simply take it out?
noted by on 2007-05-31 at 18:19 EDT:
This has been asked for several times; I suspect it isn't going to happen until we can come up with a suitable replacement which tickle's Richard's funnybone.
The closest I can get is: Ty Rant
Also: Moe Gul? N. Trepreneur? C. Zar? X. Ecutive? N. Vestor? Lee Der? O. Verlord? O. Verseer?
Or, given that it's been a man for over 15 years... Di Rector?
I think this is the ultimate [dis]proof of the claims that the comments process has been meaningful. That they have refused to change this trivial-to-the-license and obviously offensive text is just appalling. The only possible explanation is that he-who-must-be-obeyed thinks it's funny...
Please change the name.noted by on 2007-06-01 at 13:03 EDT:
noted by on 2007-06-02 at 16:33 EDT:
Aye, Coon is extremely un-funny and extremely offensive. Having been directly called that by members of the KKK as they burned crosses on my lawn and threaten to lynch members of my family, I have zero love for the word.
"Mr. Smythe" is a great alternative for this.
I frankly DON'T find the words "Ty Coon" offensive, in the harmless context, in which it is used, in the GPL.
The two words are meant to be a play on the word "Tycoon", which, according to Dictionary.com, means "a businessperson of great wealth and power; magnate." It is obviously meant as a joke about a tycoon with a similar sounding name. I don't see how anyone could possibly reasonably be "offended" by this.
Listen, this has been in the GPL for at least 16 years and no one has ever had a problem with it. In my humble opinion, there is no need to change it - leave it as it is.
please remove the word Coon
Recommend replacing "Ty Coon" with "Big Cheese"
It would make sense that Richard Stallman may have chosen a word like "Ty Coon," as it would be hangover from the common vernacular used by the post WW1 generation. However, the word is used less often now, and is generally applied to "old money" professions, such as "oil tycoons." The word it would seem was originally meant tongue-in-cheek as it is now. It was derived from the Japanese word å¤§ç«è , and used as a way to impress US invaders of Japan in the mid-19th-century. However, this does not seem like a lasting word, and certainly not one that a person can derive from greek or latin origins, thus, it will only be all the more confusing for non-native speakers to derive the meaning. Lastly, by splitting it up into "Ty Coon," it may even have a worse interpretation, namely that someone not understanding the word 'tycoon', with its tricky etymology, may look up "Ty" and "Coon." Ty being an uncommon word, (language code for tahitian, shortwave for "they") they would be left with Coon. Perhaps they would think that "Coon" meant the animal or perhaps they would look at its just as common meaning "disparaging term for a Black person."