These days the free software community has a lot of problems, for example, the problem of commercial social networking platforms that want to have their own closed protocols and make money with the users' data. Yes, I consider this a problem.
However, in the first half of the 00s, we had other problems: WiFi was new, and a lot of hardware existed that had no Linux driver. In those days, struggling around with ndiswrapper was usual. Especially, I can remember that Broadcom refused to support open source drivers. Meanwhile, they changed their policy, and Broadcom-Chips have become fairly well-supported under Linux.
Well, recently I bought a cheap old Laptop. I noticed that the WiFi-Card did not work under Linux. So I watched it up: It is an Inprocomm Ipn2220, and the recommended installation procedure is still ndiswrapper. As far as I see, it was built at a time when it was not normal yet that every WiFi-Card has a Linux driver. And the company was bought up before this, so nobody cared, as the chipset was not supported anymore. Well, I will probably just buy a small USB-Stick.
However, it is nice to see that while we have a lot of new problems, some of the old problems are gone: A WiFi card without a Linux driver - that sounds unbelievable nowadays!