Caleb Cushing's Blog

If you can’t beat them, join them

I have been heavily criticized for criticizing, critiquing, and complaining about lack of quality in open source projects. I have done these things because I care, generally because I care about that specific project, or Open Source (or whatever I’m talking about) in general. I’ve been attacked, insulted, and sworn at. I’ve recently come to the realization that the community support that behavior, to the point that they won’t stand up against those doing it. It is a very cliquish and tribal community, if you’re in the in crowd you can do or say what you want, if not you’ll be ostracized. I have been ostracized for years. I have decided to join the opinions of those I’ve been ostracized by, but also to accept my exile.

In order to discontinue my negative and inappropriate behavior, I have to stop caring. I choose now to not care about helping others who cannot (or choose not?) to help themselves. I will no longer complain about the problems of some projects, even those that I can and have provided fixes to the problems for. I will no longer fix problems that do not impact me. I will no longer tell people that they are misguided, no matter how much they are. I will no longer produce anything that doesn’t help me. I have to become selfish and stop caring about the problems of others.

To this end I’m discontinuing my work on Arch Linux’s AUR as it doesn’t help me, CPANPLUS::Dist::Arch which does most of the work, is more than capable of doing this for anyone using Arch, the packages will be orphaned. In acceptance of my exile I am removing myself from all IRC channels (though I will continue to connect) unless I have a problem, that way I do not end up causing a problem, it seems even when I have a problem and try to limit it to that I end up causing one. I am going to ask that my blog be removed from the Iron Man ‘competition’. I’ve been told that none of the work I’ve done is significant anyways, and thus my loss will not be a loss at all.

I will continue working on any project that has some benefit to myself, as my time is precious and I have a life outside of Open Source. I will only do so, however, if it doesn’t require me to have an opinion. There is no point in pushing for a fix that I have a workaround for already, I will simply be seen as entitled and asking too much of other peoples time.

I can’t win the fight by writing patches, or by helping people by answering questions, or sharing my knowledge publicly. So I choose not to fight, I choose to accept that I am not wanted and so I will leave.


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