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    Developer advocate is a bigger lie than developer evangelist.

    At least I know that with an evangelist I can expect some irrational fervor and attempts to shoe-horn in the product as the One Blessed Solution.

    With a “developer advocate”, I might get confused and think that they care about my project and existence as a developer instead of, say, getting my business to keep paying for their subscriptions and shelling out for expensive support and SLAs.

    Developer relations is reasonable.

    (also, changing accepted and recognized terminology because some people find it problematic is a trend that is tiring.)

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      (also, changing accepted and recognized terminology because some people find it problematic is a trend that is tiring.)

      It’s more work than not doing it, so ‘tiring’ is more-or-less tautological. I find it particularly tiresome when the change is requested for reasons I don’t really understand (which, for new changes, is every time).

      Nevertheless, I can think of plenty of examples of terminology which was abandoned because enough people found it problematic, and I imagine we’ll continue to see them. Many words were once commonly spoken and are now slurs whispered behind closed doors.

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        “Developer relations” sounds reasonable because it is a variation on “Public relations”.

        “Public relations” is an alternative for “propaganda”. It was invented to make propaganda techniques acceptable for US companies after “propaganda” had a negative connotation after World War 2.

        Propaganda was used by the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and others to rally for domestic support and demonize enemies during the World Wars, which led to more sophisticated commercial publicity efforts as public relations talent entered the private sector. Most historians believe public relations became established first in the US by Ivy Lee or Edward Bernays, then spread internationally. –Wikipedia on Public Relations

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          (also, changing accepted and recognized terminology because some people find it problematic is a trend that is tiring.)

          This particular one does seem to be caught on a kind of euphemism treadmill (or maybe cycle). When I first encountered developer evangelist in the late 2000s, I read it (and think others did too) as an attempt to be more informal than developer relations, which was then often seen as enterprise-ese for “salesperson”. So it actually came off to me as less pushy, despite the literal meaning being more pushy. Oracle would send over a developer relations person, but if you were a cool startup, you’d send a developer evangelist. And then big companies that wanted to also seem cool followed suit, e.g. I think I first encountered a Microsoft person called a developer evangelist at a SuperHappyDevHouse hackathon, and he was very consciously someone who had been hired out of the community and wasn’t doing a hard-sell on Microsoft products. Now it feels like maybe it’s flipped the other way, and the developer evangelist sounds more rather than less pushy. Still not necessarily in the bad old enterprise sense, but in the new startuppy sense where you expect it might be someone who is going to always push you in the direction of a “helpful” blog post on their company blog that just happens to be cheerfully selling their new tech beneath a thin pretence of being about some CS or programming topic.

          Or at least that’s how I’ve read it; it’s possible I’m way off on this.

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          We could just call this Developer Propagandist. Actually, for some companies with a brand that enjoys that level of humor, that might even work.

          Overall, I personally find the title Developer evangelist to be a bit on the pretentious side, as the product being propagandized isn’t usually something that could even pretend to be a proper life changer.

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            I would probably want to hear from the first person I saw calling themselves a “Developer Propagandist”. Humor + honesty FTW.

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            Yep. As a Christian, I’ve always felt the term “evangelist” as applied to marketing is disrespectful.

            If the role is about teaching developers the benefits of a product, why not “developer instructor”?

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              I fell asleep while reading this post. How much karma do I need for down voting?

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                Arguing for something because Django (very controversially) also did it seems like a strange tact to take here.

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                  Nowadays I tend to prefer the term Developer Relations Engineer as it seems to better describe the role.

                  The basic idea is that this role needs to be bi-directional, you’re going to build a long-term relationship with developers that are going to invest time and money in your product/library/API. Anyway, you’re going to drive what are the company’s interests. Sometimes having to promote a new shiny technology even if is not better then something already existing. In this cases, your job is going to focus on providing the right feedback to your engineering team.

                  An evangelist really sounds like someone preaching for the “One Blessed Solution”, and Advocate, as someone already wrote, looks like they care about the developers’ projects.

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                    Don’t know what is worse, evangelist or (ab)using the word engineer. What could engineering possibly have to do with a software sales person?