Natives in Tech urges Apache to change its name

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Natives in Tech, a nonprofit organization that represents Indigenous people, has accused the Apache Software Foundation of culturally appropriating its name from an actual Native American tribe. It wants the web server provider’s name changed because of the “ignorant” and “offensive” cultural appropriation.

According to Natives in Tech, while many organizations have appropriated indigenous culture, “none of them are as large, prestigious, or well-known in software circles as The Apache Software Foundation is.” The Foundation objects to Apache co-creator Brian Behlendorf’s explanation for why he proposed the name and its “Spaghetti Western” tropes, as well as the Foundation’s feather logo and its stated “reverence and appreciation” for a singular, broadly defined “Apache” identity.

The nonprofit published a blog post in which it questioned why the software foundation chose the name Apache in the first place. In a video about the foundation’s beginnings, co-founder Brian Behlendorf says he chose the Apache name out of admiration for the Native American tribe.

Natives in Tech, on the other hand, claims that the Apache name was chosen because of harmful stereotypes about Indigenous people. “This frankly out-of-date spaghetti-Western ‘romantic’ portrayal of a living and vibrant community as dead and gone in order to build a technology company ‘for the greater good’ is as ignorant as it is offensive,” the group wrote.

The sources for this piece include an article in TheRegister.

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