Please don't change Beastie to another crap logo such as NetBSD!!!

Ted Mittelstaedt tedm at
Thu Feb 10 22:09:32 PST 2005

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Garance A Drosehn [mailto:gad at]
> Sent: Thursday, February 10, 2005 1:17 PM
> To: Ted Mittelstaedt; freebsd-questions at
> Subject: RE: Please don't change Beastie to another crap logo such as
> NetBSD!!!
> At 12:50 AM -0800 2/10/05, Ted Mittelstaedt wrote:
> >No, sorry.  The core team apparently feels that the way to do things
> >now is to made decisions of this nature first, then have discussion
> >later, rather than the reverse which previously has been the case.
> This contest came out because the developers who actually work on
> freebsd had a very energetic debate on the topic.  Core stepped in
> before we started throwing pies at each other, and came up with
> this idea:  *Keep* Beastie as the official mascot, but then have a
>            ****  ---->   PUBLIC CONTEST  <----  ****
> open to   ****  ---->      EVERYONE     <----  ****
> to see if we might also come up with some alternate logo.
> >However, as the core team as apparently represented by R Watson
> >has stated they want to consider this internally first, then
> >just tell the userbase what they are going to do later on, I
> >say screw you, and I'll argue and fight against this topic for
> >years.
> How silly.  "Internally" means "among all the committers who spend
> their time, effort, and money making commits to the FreeBSD project".
> It does not mean "Robert Watson talked to his navel, and they agreed
> on this course of action".
> The actual developers.  The people you pretend to respect, unless
> anyone one of them has a single idea which might disagree with you.

The postings among the userbase in questions and advocacy are
mainly agreeing with me and not with you.  The users you pretend to
respect unless you have a single idea which disagrees with them.

> While you seem determined to pretend that Robert Watson is somehow
> the sole person interested in this, let me note I am one of the
> FreeBSD committers who would like to see some new ideas for a logo.

Good.  At least you have my respect now for growing some balls and
admitting it publically.  Would the rest of the
anti-beastie committers please come out of the bushes now?

> Now if nothing particularly special comes from this contest, then
> fine, at least we *tried*.  But apparently you think we're not even
> supposed to try.

No, I think that you are welcome to try but you aren't welcome to
take whatever you get and replace the logo of Beastie, (and I don't
mean the stylized pictures of him that aren't logos, I mean the
logo picture that WC and BSDI used for years, and is still on the
index page of the FreeBSD website) as the flagship logo of FreeBSD.

FreeBSD is big enough to have multiple logos.  But there is only
one logo that is the central, main, flagship logo.  Any non-beastie
logo you come up with should never be used except in instances
where the beastie logo is absolutely unacceptable to some commercial
enterprise, and a logo is a requirement.

> Why would I like some other logo?  Because in addition to committing
> the occasional patch to FreeBSD (totalling some 500+ commits), I do
> public presentations to groups of non-FreeBSD'ers about FreeBSD.  I
> am trying to promote FreeBSD -- THE OPERATING SYSTEM -- and I am
> tired of spending my time explaining some cartoon character.  I am
> in this project because of the quality of the operating system, and
> NOT because I have some deranged need to defend some "in joke" about
> daemons.

It surprises me you feel the need to use a logo at all in these

> As I said on the committers mailing list when we were debating this
> topic:  The beastie icon does *not* separate "close-minded" people
> from "open-minded" people.  It does *not* separate the "religious"
> people from "non-religious" people.  It does not even separate
> "Christian" people from "non-Christian" people.  The only thing
> that logo does is separate "People who already know Unix" from
> "People who have never heard of a daemon process".


>  It is nothing
> more than an "in joke", where we can feel smug about how "smart"
> we are when some poor goober is stupid enough to ask "So why do
> you use some cute-looking demon for your icon?".

The daemon image far predates FreeBSD or
any of the BSD's for that matter and goes right back to Ma Bell.  Greg
documented it back to 1976, and I do not recall the daemons on the
front cover of the early BSD manuals to have much "cuteness" factor
to them.

Perhaps at one time it was an "in-joke" but then, so was the name of
UNIX itself an "in-joke"  The name UNIX has grown beyond this as
has use of the daemon image.

> When I have done public presentations for FreeBSD, I have never had
> anyone reject FreeBSD because of the deamon.  Not once. And if I
> am talking to a group of Unix-people, I don't even have to explain
> the beastie icon.
> On the other hand, I do sometimes get people who have no experience
> with Unix.  And those people will look at me like I am still some
> kid trying to defend the Major Matt Mason as being an "action figure"
> instead of a doll.  Their attitude is "Okay -- so unix has these
> things called a 'daemon process' -- but I still don't get why is it
> so important that your icon must be this cartoon".  They would have
> the exact same attitude if we happened to call those processes 'a buzz
> process', and then made our icon be Buzz Lightyear.  The "religious
> connotation" is not relevant, because most the people I talk to are
> simply not all that religious.  And yet they still look at me like
> I am nuts when I am explaining the logo, and I see no reason I should
> continue to waste my time giving people a lesson in the history of
> the word 'daemon'.

Then simply refrain from using the Beastie image when making public
FreeBSD presentations.  If they are at all interested in FreeBSD and
end up pursuing it after the presentation, they will encounter the
daemon image soon enough.  As you continue to insist Beastie isn't
a requirement for FreeBSD, so why then do you keep using it?

> I am a programmer, not a teacher of linguistics
> or word-history.

Yes that is obvious.  You probably never heard of the saying
"Those who don't learn from histories mistakes are doomed
to repeat them" either.


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