I was watching a thread yesterday and was frankly really appalled by the level of discourse. As we’ve grown in headcount (now over 10K lobsters, I think), it’s probably useful to bring that up for discussion.
Some observations, at the time of this writing:
Oh, and by the way–note the sheer volume of commentary (which is easy, and anybody can do it) compared with the tiny amount of useful technical discussion (which is hard, and apparently only a few people posting had the expertise required to engage productively).
It’s like folks are trying to get us onto n-gate.
This site is for practicing technologists and for people trying to learn about technology and better themselves as engineers and developers. The way that the community handled this submission frankly makes me disheartened.
Some questions worth reflecting on:
How do you think the person who submitted this neat project feels when only a tiny fraction of the replies to their submission even talk about it? Do you think that they’re likely to submit something else? Would you submit something else?
Assuming that open-source and sharing software is a good thing by itself, how do you think this sort of reaction encourages that for folks at Palantir? Will execs/teams-leads looking at this thread come away feeling like it’s worth the time to help empower their employees to release software?
Why wasn’t the off-topic flag used more? If the community can’t be trusted to police itself, do you think it’s going to be allowed to do so?
To what extent does getting into slapfights over “ethics” help the signal to noise ratio of the site? How can such discussions be structured in the future so as not to discourage the technical discussion here that frankly is endangered everywhere else.
I’ve got pointier remarks, but honestly I don’t think they’re germane to the sort of discussion I’d like to see coming from this, at this time.