Remember when GitHub started allowing removing issues, rather than just closing them? People got all wound up saying that issues shouldn't be totally removed and there should be a public record of the maintainer closing it.
This is a perfect example of what that feature enables. The maintainers can, if they want, just go in and remove all these issue reports. It totally removes any power that troll accounts have.
I think there's a point, where this can turn against the project and maybe Notepad++ reached it? It may also change the dynamic while you grow. Just think about how Hacker News would look like today if submissions about political affairs were accepted...
However, I love that the Notepad++ Devs did also show some humor before with a well-known easter egg: Type Random, select the word and hit F1. 
Does it count if I donate to a different group that supports Uganda children, but still use vim?
In any case, I applaud the vim devs for promoting this.
Why would anyone want that? The author took a public stance against oppression, and all these trolls are demonstrating that he is right.
"People will tell me again to not mix politics with software/business. Doing so surely impacts the popularity of Notepad++: talking about politics is exactly what software and commercial companies generally try to avoid. The problem is, if we don’t deal with politics, politics will deal with us. We can choose to not act when people are being oppressed, but when it’s our turn to be oppressed, it will be too late and there will be no one for us. You don’t need to be Uyghur or a Muslim to act, you need only to be a human and have empathy for our fellow humans."
Edit: replaced “in terms of game theory” with “game-theoretically”.
North Korea still holds out as they completely closed down their population. But if you try to have all the good parts of western society while still limiting intellectual freedom, I think all of this will come apart eventually. Travel from and to China is not severely limited, and eventually there will be an influx and a core cell of Chinese people wanting to have the same freedoms for their country.
Fighting those minds will show the true faces of any authoritarian regime, which in turn will get more people upset. I think in these days of full technical mind control, it will be an interesting excercise in how long a government can keep this critical mass contained and intimidated.
But once they can get some visibility and they hit a weak spot in the regime, it's usually over: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monday_demonstrations_in_East_...
The human mind is meant to be free. Any dictatorship is actively working at destroying itself.
Politics isn't about humans, its about power.
I wouldn't surprised if there is a quite significant chunk of accounts on any soc media sites that are dormant until "the call" comes in.
I understand the value of not wanting to bring politics into a shared large tech community, but at the same time you should be able to do what you want with your own software, and using it to push your ideals is legit.
We must remember though that this should also apply to ideas we don't agree with.
Edit: "Notepad++ v7.8.1: Free Uyghur"
I love it.
That said, the Notepad++ forum has been the target of a low level DoS attack for the past month...
I wonder if some kind of pattern could be apparent? (Currently the few accounts I have visited are front end JS developers) Could some of them be active in your own communities?
All the salient patterns have already been described in a book published by George Orwell in the late '40s.
What has that got to do with this?
My issue with this is that some people think that all online supporters of the Chinese government are paid shills or just bots. It might surprise you to know that there are normal Chinese people, just like you and I, that simply like things are going in China. I see no reason to disrespect or ostracise them for their politics.
A simple reason why is imagine not having to have a paid online army or coordinate a sophisticated bot attack when your population will do it voluntarily and with enthusiasm.
The more complex reason is more interesting and it really is about the freedom to think and speak but it's also where criticism of China as a state is considered to be an attack on the people and where even telling the truth must be sacrificed for stability. China has the myth that it is stable because it has lost so much blood in the past therefore the stability is more important than human rights or the truth. It's actually why Muslims and Hong Kong are attacked, literally because their existence shows that China is not whole or stable. It's frightening and most Chinese people will rather not rock the boat.
This "attack" on GitHub is actually a defense.
They named a release in a way that they knew would piss off Chinese users. Now Chinese users are pissed off. Shall we say "mission accomplished"?
No, they piss off CCP supporters, that's not the same thing at all.
Given that 150 states have signed the genocide convention I don’t think that being against Genocide is a western view.
Excerpt from the blog post:
> At least 120,000 members of Kashgar’s Muslim Uyghur minority have been detained in Xinjiang’s re-education camps which aim to change the political thinking of detainees, their identities, and their religious beliefs. Reports from the World Uyghur Congress submitted to the United Nations in July 2018 suggest that 1 million Uyghurs are currently being held in the re-education camps.
> Here are some actions you can take to help them:
> The fact you have just learned such information is already an action in and of itself. But you can involve more people to focus on this issue and hopefully apply additional pressure on the Chinese government to stop their oppressive actions and crimes concerning the Uyghur people.
People will tell me again to not mix politics with software/business. Doing so surely impacts the popularity of Notepad++: talking about politics is exactly what software and commercial companies generally try to avoid. The problem is, if we don’t deal with politics, politics will deal with us. We can choose to not act when people are being oppressed, but when it’s our turn to be oppressed, it will be too late and there will be no one for us. You don’t need to be Uyghur or a Muslim to act, you need only to be a human and have empathy for our fellow humans.
> Hence Notepad++ Free Uyghur Edition:
Update: looks like 4chan has started their trolling...
This is just Chinese people being angry at someone calling out China for its concentration camps.
If there is a coherent English comment in there anywhere making a reasonable case (i.e., beyond not liking it) for not including a phrase like 'Free Uyghur' in their release notes, I haven't found it.
This incident is a perfect example showing why embracing China and hoping they would be more open to modern values like freedom of speech, democracy, etc., is a total illusion.
Too many Chinese people are brainwashed to the core that even if the great firewall is switched off today, nothing will change. The currently brainwashed people simply despise anything against Chinese official rhetoric; they don't put any thoughts to follow other people's reasons. And this brainwashing will pass on from one generation to the next.
I've met too many mainland Chinese use only Baidu to search, use only WeChat to do messaging, read only Weibo and watch only CCTV to update themselves on current affairs, even when they are physically outside of China. Sure there are still some reasonable Chinese, but 9.9 times out of 10 they are very reluctant to speak up, since they still have some stakes in China. If they do speak up, their family back in China will get locked up, harrased, wealth get taken, you name it. It happens all the time.
That's why powerful external force is necessary for China to change. And if we don't force China to change, China will erode the rest of the world's modern values, which is the foundation of our civilization. China's export of oppression, like recent news about NBA and Apple, has been actually on-going for a very long time. In Hong Kong here, we see it all the time all around us.
There's another option: Treat them like North Korea. No trade in, no trade out, let them be whatever they want as long as it doesn't hurt anyone outside China.
It's the least profitable option, of course, but much easier to pull off than overthrowing a government armed with nuclear weapons, and un-brainwashing over a billion people.
And we also have to abandon 1.3 billion people in the process. For example, people in North Korea are starving. It's just we don't pay much attention to it. Is this evil necessary?
Can we save them all? We've given North Korea free grain shipments before to help their population, the government just resold it for cash. And we can't topple a government that's willing to use nuclear weapons just to stay in power.
At some point you just have to wait for a better chance. The Soviet bloc was just as unjust and abusive, but before Gorbachev, there was simply no chance of getting rid of it without a hundred million dead in the process. We can only hope that North Korea (or China, hypothetically) appoint benign reformers at some point.
In recent time, there has been more voices in China where notion regarding the West being "brainwashed" by the western media starts the emerge, which had never happened before.
I think it's interesting to note this as it's easy to be one-sided when you are hearing only the narrative and values from a certain belief system. As such without discussing the actual merit of each individual belief, care should be taken perhaps to at least recognize the implicit meaning behind any claims of "brainwash" to ones other than your own.
I'd say most Chinese cast their lot a good while ago and they decided to trade some personal freedom for economic prosperity, basically giving the CCP carte blanche to do anything (in)humanly possible to preserve the status quo. Reversing that trend is not impossible but it's extremely difficult by now: there's simply not enough dissent and anything that does pop up gets quickly dealt with. It's why Hong Kong is so important.
It doesn't really. The current issue count is 1354. Since many people seem to be adding multiple issues and some of them are in support of the author, that means maybe a few hundred Notepad++ users were riled up enough to comment. That's unlikely to be a significant chunk of the whole userbase in China. That most messages protesting the naming of the release are in Chinese only tells you that most people supporting the Chinese government are Chinese, not that most Chinese support the government.
However a lot of western media and commenters conflate this by adding their own propaganda twists into their message, either surreptitiously (being anti-Chinese and using "freedom" as an excuse to attack China) or perhaps innocently without realising it (ignorantly, thinking their are really about "freedom" and not realising their own prejudices). This unnecessarily inflames the situation and a more balanced message would have worked better without triggering the sensitivities of very nationalist people.
> The Uyghurs are not ethnically Chinese but live in China’s so-called autonomous Xinjiang region. The region’s name suggests the Uyghurs have autonomy and self-governance.
"Chinese" is not an ethnicity, you probably meant "Han Chinese" as the ethnicity. Saying that Uyghurs "are not Chinese" is like saying Northern Irish people "are not British". Of course this is going to piss people off, pro-Chinese Uyghurs included. Indeed many of the Github comments are about accusations to split China, and of course if you go into Northern Ireland and talk about how all those people are "not British" you will understandably get the same sort of accusation, that you are trying to split up a nation. Indeed the pro-British Northern Irish call themselves the "unionists", the very word the direct opposite meaning to "split".
The naming of the region as "autonomous" is also historical and unrelated to the current surveillance and oppression (which is appalling) but to say this in your second paragraph makes it sound like there is some conspiratorial connection. The region in fact does have more legal autonomy than the other provinces of China.
Now the question is, state or privately backed DDoS?
The third option is that they took it down themselves due to a different kind of abuse, i.e. a report form or something.
Just received a response from GitHub support (I removed their name):
> #### (GitHub Developer Support)
> Oct 30, 10:38 AM UTC
> Thanks for taking the time to let us know. Our team is currently
> investigating the account in question.
> Please let us know if we can help in any other way!
"We've received too many requests from your IP address recently. Please wait a few minutes, then try again."
Many of these accounts seem to be very active outside of the Notepad++ repo.
Regardless of politics and Chinese propaganda, hurling insults at someone on Github should be reason enough for action against their account. You can say that the news media is lying and all that, that's just daily grind for most English-themed media as well now, but yelling "fuck you" and "wishing a rotten vagina" upon people is not something that should ever be tolerated.
Then if GitHub was a living organism, it would lack an immune system to defend itself against infection.
If you go to github.com/$user on the bottom of the sidebar left: "Block or report user"
It really should be on each comment and issue the user has created.
Edit: wow, downvotes appeared pretty quickly. Hopefully this whole post becomes training for detecting malicious behavior.
Github should have something in place to protect projects from their copyright owners?
Also, If they are "just an ethnic group", then why are so many being sent to prison? Why the mass surveillance, restrictions, arrests and 're-education' camps?
"Free Uyghur" doesn't necessarily mean they should be given their own nation, but at least be able to practice their culture and religion freely.
Notepad++ (and many other Windows executables) was found vulnerable to loading a hacked DLL dependency on a compromised Windows system. Notepad++ itself contained no backdoor as far as I can tell.
This issue is explained here, as well as the actions taken to prevent it from happening again:
That is stretching the definition.
A privileged local attacker could (and can) modify Notepad++ and any other software, that is not a vulnerability or issue of any kind.
I'm sure these guys mean well but they've been manipulated as much as the 'other side' has been.
What news are reported and how they are reported in not random . There has very clearly been a campaign against China and this shows that it is working.
The far more likely explanation is that this is organic.
Edit: I stand corrected. Wow.
I mean... the CIA did fuck with Notepad++ in the past: https://wikileaks.org/ciav7p1/cms/page_26968090.html
The CIA replaced a DLL dependency of Notepad++ with a hijacked version on compromised Windows systems.