Is the IRS scheming to destroy open source projects?

In today's open source roundup: The IRS may be targeting open source projects. Plus: Install Linux Mint on your Macbook Air, and what's new in Linux Deepin 2014

The IRS is one of the most feared and loathed parts of the federal government. It has recently been found to target political groups that don't tow the line of the people currently in charge of the US government. Now Ars Technica is reporting that the IRS may be targeting open source projects by refusing to give them 501(c)(3) status.

According to Ars Technica:

The IRS denied a proposal to grant 501(c)(3) status to Yorba, a nonprofit organization that develops open source software for the Linux desktop. In a blog post yesterday, Yorba spokesperson Jim Nelson disclosed the full text of the IRS rejection letter. He fears that IRS policy has evolved to broadly preclude nonprofit open source software developers from obtaining 501(c)(3) tax exemptions.

It took the IRS four years to issue Yorba’s rejection, consistent with the poor treatment and delays seen by other organizations that were targeted by the IRS keyword watch list. Beyond the problems with the reasoning that the IRS provides for rejecting Yorba, the manner in which it has singled out prospective charitable organizations by blind keyword matching rather than the merits of the individual case seems deeply discriminatory.

More at Ars Technica

As the article notes, the organization that was denied 501(c)(3) status can still operate, but they may face a hefty tax burden that could adversely affect their ability to survive financially since they are a nonprofit. Given all the other IRS scandals going on, one has to wonder where the heck the US Congress is in all of this? Aren't they supposed to provide oversight for the IRS?

If you find yourself angry at the behavior of the IRS, you might want to take a moment to contact your representatives in Congress. While it may or may not get them moving to reign in the IRS, it certainly won't hurt to put some pressure on them and let them know that you are aware of the shenanigans being perpetrated by the IRS.

Install Linux Mint on your Macbook Air

Everyday Linux User has instructions on how to install Linux Mint on the Macbook Air, and still let you run OS X.

According to Everyday Linux User:

This time I am going to show how to install Linux Mint alongside OSX on the MacBook Air.

Linux Mint has been top of the Distrowatch rankings for the past year. Whilst the rankings have to be taken with a pinch of salt there is clearly merit in writing an article showing the best that Linux has to offer working on hardware that oozes quality.

The actual installation isn't too difficult but there are some challenges on the way and the steps highlighted are the steps I used to complete the task. As always if there are better ways to achieve the same goals please feel free to leave a comment.

More at Everyday Linux User

I've never tried to install Linux Mint on a Mac, but I'm sure there are folks out there who will find this article useful. It's a nice way of having the best of both worlds. You get to run Linux Mint, one of the top Linux distributions, right alongside Apple's OS X on the Macbook Air.

What's new in Linux Deepin 2014

WebUpd8 has a helpful video that explores the new stuff in Linux Deepin 2014.

The Linux Deepin site has plenty more information, as well as download links and community support including a forum and wiki.

What's your take on all this? Tell me in the comments below.

The opinions expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the views of ITworld.

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