Very often, folks want to refer to both the free and open source software communities in a way that is inclusive of and respectful of groups who identify with either term. Saying "free and open source software" is a mouthful. That said, there was no been consensus on what we should do instead.

The Wikipedia article on alternative terms for free software suggests that FOSS, F/OSS, FLOSS, and "software libre" are contenders. I’ve heard all. Of course, the choice of 4+ competing alternative terms is probably worse than the problem we were seeking to solve.

In academic circles, the big debate seems to be between FOSS and FLOSS. I was always a FOSS partisan. But I’ve seen increased momentum on the FLOSS side and I’m ready to declare that FLOSS has won.

I know it makes you think of dental hygiene and I agree that it is unfortunate. It wasn’t my first choice either. But I can see where things are going. FLOSS Manuals and the folks at the FLOSS Research Group at Syracuse who launched the FLOSSHub and the associated FLOSS Papers deserve some of the credit.

If we can get over the irony of having spent so much time arguing over what was intended to be compromise terminology in the first place, lets see if we actually start talking to each other.