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    Reminds of this commit in sqlite3. Similar issue with people’s names showing up in open source software and end users harassing them over the vendor.

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      I had forgotten about that #define in the SQLite source! You just made my morning by linking to it, thank you.

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      I think we all need to exercise a large amount of sympathy for the person who sent the message. While they go about things the wrong way, people do not understand the way that software is put together, and so come to unreasonable (to us) conclusions.

      Perhaps we need to be developing some well written explanations that can serve as templates for responses to mail like this.

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        I mean, I’m sympathetic - she sounds desperate, and for good reason. That doesn’t mean indulging her patiently is a productive course of action - that will just encourage more of the behavior, from her and others. And the author here has already tried that, it appears.

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          You are always a voice of reason Irene. My thoughts exactly.

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            Well, thank you! :)

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        Is she really trying to “blackmail” the man who supposedly “hacked” her into providing technical support?

        Her thought process is messed up.

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          I suspect that she’s thinking that hacking is analogous to physical vandalism and is trying to pressure him into providing restitution. That sort of thing can actually work in small communities. She just doesn’t realize the improbability of it working in this type of case.

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          It was an interesting (and a bit depressing) read. Sorry that a random dev donating his time is being harassed (and it is indeed harassment - there are threats in that email) and interesting that the for profit companies using his code are not the target (or may be they are, too), but, but - flagged this as off-topic, which I think it is.

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            I love getting down and detailed with new programming languages and useful new libraries and so forth, but I find it valuable to be reminded occasionally of how far “normal” people’s experience of computers is from my own. That said, perhaps Lobsters isn’t the right venue, even the “programming” tag was a bit of a stretch. Thanks for leaving an explanatory comment.

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            Tell her that your name is there because Instagram and Spotify used your work?

            An analogy that might get the point across is “I make bricks, they make the building.”

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              They make the building and the user chose the keycode for the lock. Unfortunately they either used 1234 or someone looked over their shoulfer while they entered it one time.

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              I wouldn’t say this is necessarily a downside, since he is in no real danger. Everyone gets spam, he can just ignore it like other unwanted emails.

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                I don’t agree. Just because he doesn’t seem to be in physical danger doesn’t mean that this isn’t a downside. Negatively charged social interactions can be a significant psychological drain, and can even pose long term health risks if they are frequent enough.

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                You see that key labelled “delete” on the top-right of your keyboard. This is what it’s for.