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Balancing discussion

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Recently the subject of mailing list discussion and offensiveness has erupted in the community. This has been triggered by a joke being sent to a list and the fallout that ensued after it. I am not going to comment on the specifics of that incident, but instead look at what I consider a critical issue here - the balance between political correctness and abusive discussion.

The Ubuntu community is a tremendously open, freeform community with a rich and diverse range of people, discussions and opinions. This diversity is our strength - we harness it to express our opinions, validate them and challenge them. To encourage frank and open discussion, we always need our discussion to be exactly that - frank and open. Two enemies to frank and open discussion are extreme political correctness and abusive discussion and are at entire opposite ends of the discussion spectrum.

On the far right side we have clearly offensive, abusive discussion. On the far left side we have political correctness.

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