I’m tired of being insulted

I joined Gentoo about two years ago, initially to work on Gentoo/FreeBSD and multimedia (Sound and Video) stuff. With the time passing, I ended up helping with PAM herd (mostly because it was Martin alone, and I needed some changes handled because of Gentoo/FreeBSD), then KDE, and then in a various order media-tv, CJK, Ruby, the Gentoo/Alt leadership (basically the new Gentoo/Alt project), the forming of the ALSA team (me and phreak), and lately fonts team with the FreeType 2.22.3 bump and plans to stable.

I’ve been criticised a lot in the past, because of my suggestions about —as-needed, because of Gentoo/FreeBSD existence, because of a lot of things. Sometimes I could even find myself thinking with the point of view of who criticised me and seen that yeah there was space not to like my approaches. It’s point of view.

But one thing I thought I deserved was at least some respect, both as a human being, and as a contributor. I always tried to play safe, not to criticise projects ideas and behaviour based on who was the person behind them, but just for their own nature. And I only insulted when someone else started it – and most of the times, the only target was spb. If I felt like criticising, I usually tried to think about them and never ended up doing names to users in public, to avoid compromising other devs for things that might have just been a misunderstanding or a problem of point of view.

But with some people, you just can’t be good enough, and they end up insulting and being verbally abusive. One could hope that someone would take care of them, Gentoo has a Developers Relations team for that, no? Not always, not for everybody in the same measure. It’s human not to use the same measure with everybody and I’m not saying they have to, but at least they should be concerned about trying to be as impartial as they can for the role they cover, especially when they are told so explicitly.

I’ve been scolded in public before for being harsh with other devs; when I did, it was usually because of arguments that had no start and no end, or because that particular person already wasted my time before; I was usually sorry afterward and said so to the other person when I was a bit more calm. But I didn’t insult, the worse you can find is a threat (followed by no action) to beu to “make his life impossible” when he brought on XMMS again on gentoo-dev (I’d like to think that with beu we cleared this up already).

But now I reached the point where I have to stop: I got insulted for dropping a keyword while getting KDE 3.5.6 out of package.mask (keyword that caused a RDEPEND.bad for the missing keyword on, duh, kdelibs, just a smallish dependency for, err, KDE), and I’ve been insulted today because I dared to ask, as maintainer of KDE, to avoid ~arching an old version of kde-meta (3.5.5, that would have got the doom of being removed next month in theory), considering that it would have been about 300 ebuilds that should have been left in the tree for just one arch (considering that the same already applies to kde-3.5.5 (monolithic) ebuilds. For who’s wondering, it also meant having a depgraph with 300 packages that have mostly || ( ) deps over other kde packages (for deprange) and that are already slowing down depgraph generation time a fair share.

And for this reason, I’ve took my steps to retire, as it doesn’t seem like devrel would act on that in a short time: my email address on Bugzilla, on this blog, and on every service I can track down will be changed to flameeyes@gmail.com, I’ve asked Steve to remove me from Planet and Universe, and from the aliases.

This post won’t appear on Planet, as I’ve been removed already. I’m writing it as an explanation for my users, for those readers I have, for why I decided to return on my steps, and leave Gentoo this time without letting anybody suggest me just to take a few weeks off. To users and to devs who think that I had a valid reason to leave but that the problem should have had a different solution, I then suggest to raise your concern: if people still accept silently that abusive behaviour passes unpunished, it will only get worse.

80 thoughts on “I’m tired of being insulted

  1. Diego,As many others I thank you for your contributions in the previous years and wish you the best. If there’s anything I’d like to emphasize is the following couple of points that others have made; as things that are perceived by a number of people, I think perhaps they are in some degree indicative of things you may want to focus in the future:* There is no better solution to human conflicts than communication. I’ll leave it at that.* Something I remember my father telling me when I was a child comes to mind frequently when I see incidents like this: the world doesn’t revolve around you, no matter how hard you want it sometimes. This is particularly true when you think (or know for certain) you have been treated unfairly by someone. At those times it’s when the character should be forged stronger than ever and motivate you to keep going forward, instead of feeling depressed and saying “I quit”.This last point reminds me of one other thing: a song called “The Grudge”, if you ever feel bored and want to look it up I highly recommend you do (it’s a great song after all). The lyrics basically talk about how holding grudges may give you a feeling of power, a sense of being right and entitled to something, but if you hold too strongly to that, it will make you sink, instead of letting you grow as a person, learn, love and evolve. When you feel more calm, try to make a conscious effort to let things go.Finally, and for comic relief, dedicated to all those who have been talking about the problem of dealing with people with different opinions, do I have a comic for you :) (particularly the last panel): http://www.qwantz.com/index

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  2. This whole thing sucks. Diego, I wish I could, but I can’t say you did the wrong thing. Thanks for the work you did, thanks for being realistic and leaving AMD64 when you knew you wouldn’t find enough time for it anymore. I loved to find a person that doesn’t care about anything else then getting stuff fixed and making Gentoo a better distribution, even if it meant to be criticised. I’m sad to see you leave. Best wishes for your future.

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  3. Eroyf, instead of attacking me, try and refute some of the points i have made… that is after you have refuted the ones jakub made of course.

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  4. eroyf: the difference between eroyf and ciaran is that ciaran got to insult all developerse for a few months before he was finally removed, cokehabit insulted one person before he was removed. Can we say that the userrel is doing a better job of keeping track of their members than devrel?

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  5. I as a user will miss you, and wish you weren’t going.After reading this I’m starting to wish for a gentoo fork that brings the good devs on, and leaves politics out. I wish for a benevolent dictator because whenever you have democracy, this kind of stuff happens. Perhaps, Diego you can have an overlay. I’d use it. keep up the good work on amarok.If the kde herd was hurting 2-ish weeks ago it will really be hurting now.Good Luck.sincerely,Caleb Cushing

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  6. All the best wishes, Diego. I want to thank you for all the valuable work you have done for Gentoo.

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  7. I always found something interesting to read here, hopefully that will continue. :)Enjoy whatever task you pick up next.

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  8. First of all:I absolutely understand and support your decision. (I being just another user that might not be worth much, but anyway)I’ve enjoyed the work you’ve done, and like so many others I’ve been a regular reader of your blog. You were one of the few truly visible Gentoo Developers.I wish you good luck with the new direction you’ll take, and I’m convinced that you’ll create just as good works with future projects. Be assured, I’ll buy you a beer if you visit Norway =)

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  9. Both sad and disgusted to see yet another dev feel like the only way to deal with Gentoo is to walk away :(Diego – you made a huge difference to Gentoo during your time there, and it was a pleasure to have worked with you on Gentoo.Best regards,Stu

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  10. This will drown in the noise, I’m sure, but I also want to say that I’m sorry to see you leave. I don’t know the full background so I’ll refrain from commenting…Like others here, I’m only a user but I want to show my appreciation to a (former) developer who actually got things done.I sometimes think that Gentoo has more policys and procedures than I have at work. And because I work with regulatory affairs in the chemical industry, that’s saying quite a lot.This is supposed to be open source and not a bloody company and until the powers that be realise this, it will only get worse.

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  11. I don’t really know what to say after all that but I just want you to know you have my support too. I’m sure you’ll continue to do great things. Thanks man.

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  12. Hi Diego,I’m really sad to see you go. I really hope that the reason to leave is that you like to do other things or don’t have the time anymore. If the reason is the comments some people make in a bugreport/mailinglist then think about the fact that they are outnumbered 1 to 1 million. Your work and everything around is is _really_ appreciated by _a lot_ of people.Anyway; whatever you decide to do in the future I want to thank you for all the things you have done and wish you everything you want in your life.

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  13. DevRel is indeed slow in retiring developers. I asked to be retired back on December 3rd, and I can still log into woodpecker today (Bug #122588).

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  14. Hi Diego,I’m very sad about your retirement. You were one of the very rare devs, who made me think about Gentoo not being in pure stagnation.And to all those schnook who caused Diego to retire: screw you!!! You are the reason of Gentoo stagnating more and more!

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  15. I’m bummed to see you go. I’ve always enjoyed reading your perspective at planet, and I thank you for all your hard work! Hopefully things will change and Gentoo will stop losing its best devs.

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  16. I am sorry you left gentoo project :-(There are many many people that will miss you :-( I think that you shouldn’t left gentoo project because ciaran is a big mouth, but it is your decission :-/Good luck

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  17. I just found out you left gentoo. I’m very, very sad to see you go. You were the only gentoo dev I have ever had a “good talk” with.My respect goes to all things you did, to all helping hands you lend, to all hours you “wasted”, to all good ideas you had … for us gentoo users.Diego, I will definitely miss you on Gentoo!

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  18. I am a Gentoo user. It’s really sad to see you going. Gentoo, and the whole OSS community, needs devels like you.I hope you can free your mind and leave behind all the stupid flames you were involved in, and maybe later, if and when you feel comfortable, you may think about joining back. :)I wish you all the best. I’m sure you won’t waste your talent, and you will soon help us in some new way.

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  19. Ah yes. With dev relations like this, is it any wonder why user relations is so ass-tastic for Gentoo as well?

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  20. The solution to all of that is rather easy: just look at how successful companies work, how they evaluate their workers and so on. There is a rather objective measure of skills and performance, and there is a measure for their ability to communicate. Take both together and you should be mostly done.

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  21. Hi,I just wanted to share some gratitude for all the work done.I remember (long time now) you helping me out on #gentoo.Thanks again and againbtw, a very good video conference from google engineers about ‘Howto keep poisonous people out of your Open project’. I’m sure you will see some of your past human experiencehttp://video.google.nl/vide…keep safe

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  22. Hey man, I just heard about this about an hour ago (I have been out of my habit of obsessively following my favorite distribution). When I heard I was rather shocked. Your influence on the gentoo project was immense; you were one of maybe 3 devs whose names I could remember. Any of the ebuilds I monkeyed around with at any point were probably from you. I really was overcome with fear for gentoo’s future when I heard. People suck; it is really a shame that people couldn’t give you guys the respect you deserve for delivering the best distro out there.

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  23. gentoo has serious personnel problems.Since you problems are mostly centered around ebuilds lets think about a new distro based say around Paludis?gentoo needs a fork and for its own good…dont leave..create something new.I absolutely refuse to contribute to gentoo after the way was treated by freenode/gentoo developers irc.And we know who they are dont we? Its the same hierarchy with their same old power games.NEW DISTRO LETS DO IT!

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