October 15, 2002

Red Hat removing all national flag icons

- By Robin "Roblimo" Miller -
After being castigated over removing Taiwan's flag from KDE files in order to make its product acceptable to the government of the People's Republic of China, Red Hat has decided not to display any countries' flags, period.The official statement Red Hat gave us for publication says:

"When we errata the kdebase, we will also issue an errata removing all flags. The following is the statement that will accompany the errata:

"'Red Hat as a global company respects the rights of all open source
users. To avoid potential political inflammation, we feel it is best to not display any flags at this time.'"

Unofficially, a Red Hat employee added this comment to this NewsForge story.

Bottom line, from the employee's unofficial post (and some email several Red Hat employees and I have exchanged), is that someone at Red Hat made a mistake, the company apologizes for it, and has corrected it. The public flamage was not necessary; a simple, polite email or two pointing out the error would have done the trick.

We now return to our regularly scheduled mix of Linux reporting and advocacy.


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