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GNU is Not Unix

Submission + - Is browser discrimination ethical?

freeopenadvocate writes: "Recently, I moved to the UK and opened a new bank account with NatWest[1]. Having recently installed Debian Etch with IceWeasel (The GNUzilla[2] version of Firefox), I tried to access my Internet Banking with which I was faced with a message 'The Internet browser you are using is not supported by OnLine Banking' and disallowed access.

Having then logged a support call and requesting them to please enable support for my specific IceWeasel browser, I was informed that they do not have a lot of users requiring that browser, and therefore they will not change their system; but the site will work with Firefox so I should switch over from IceWeasel. Being an advocate of Free and Open Software, and not wanting to change, brings me to the question:

Is it ethical to disallow certain browsers from online services?

If I walked up to a cashier in a bank wearing a T-Shirt with the slogan 'I believe in Free Software', and they informed me, "No, we don't like what you are wearing. We will not provide you with any service.", I would believe that to be discrimination. Is my bank discriminating against me for using IceWeasel instead of Firefox?

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Is browser discrimination ethical?

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