After announcing his company was abandoning Unity for GNOME, Shuttleworth posted a thank-you note to the Unity community Friday on Google Plus, but added on Saturday:
"I used to think that it was a privilege to serve people who also loved the idea of service, but now I think many members of the free software community are just deeply anti-social types who love to hate on whatever is mainstream. When Windows was mainstream they hated on it. Rationally, Windows does many things well and deserves respect for those. And when Canonical went mainstream, it became the focus of irrational hatred too. The very same muppets would write about how terrible it was that IOS/Android had no competition and then how terrible it was that Canonical was investing in (free software!) compositing and convergence. Fuck that shit."
"The whole Mir hate-fest boggled my mind - it's free software that does something invisible really well. It became a political topic as irrational as climate change or gun control, where being on one side or the other was a sign of tribal allegiance. We have a problem in the community when people choose to hate free software instead of loving that someone cares enough to take their life's work and make it freely available."
Shuttleworth says that "I came to be disgusted with the hate" on Canonical's display server Mir, saying it "changed my opinion of the free software community."
Full story here.
The stated reason for Mir's existence was that Canonical thought they could do exactly what Wayland does, but ship a working product quicker than Wayland despite starting one year behind. They also presented some very sketchy technical criticisms of Wayland's design which were immediately refuted by Wayland's development team.
The stated reasons, then, were complete bullshit. The actual reason was that Canonical wanted to make a play in the mobile space, and use a GPLv3'ed codebase that they fully owned as a weapon to make inroads into it: Pay us a licensing fee to incorporate our shitty display server into your device or the GPLv3 will force you to surrender your patent rights. Android is permissively-licensed and had a crushing advantage in market position already, but this converged UX and desktop dock capability built into the core of the system's design was supposed to be the killer feature.
So Shuttleworth lied about his reasons for starting this project, and the actual reasons were hostile and divisive to the wider community. Then he gets pissy when called out on his bullshit.