It has been suggested that The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) change its name out of respect for the Indigenous culture that it is said to appropriate by the nonprofit organisation Natives in Tech, which was founded to empower Native American peoples through networking events and other initiatives.
As evidence, the organisation points to a warning from the IT company, which advises its customers to “be cautious in the language that [they] pick,” in a blog post in which it calls out Apache for violating the code of conduct.
According to legend, the company’s namesake, Brian Behlendorf, got the idea while watching a film about the legendary Native American leader Geronimo.
Behlendorf claims that the treatment of the Apache by Western colonisers of the United States “almost poetically matched what he believed [the corporation] was doing with this web-server project.”
The article claims that Behlendorf engaged in Indigenous erasure, defined as “the process of removing, re-framing, and undermining Indigenous presence, past and present,” and it draws attention to the eight federally recognised tribes in Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Arizona that use the Apache name today.
From time to time, we’ve been requested to investigate allegations that members of the Apache Native American community are inappropriately using the term “Apache.” “an excerpt from the firm’s website (link opens in new tab).
“After using the term “Apache” for 25 years, the ASF has never had a legal conflict with Native American groups or any other party over the name.
The ASF’s name and associated visuals have been criticised before, the firm notes. Its feather emblem has been criticised in the past for perpetuating a negative stereotype of “Indianness,” according to a group blog post that demands an end to the usage of Native American names, symbols, and mascots in advertising and the business world.
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