Disclaimer: please take this post with a grain of salt and consider it tongue-in-cheek. While the situation from which it sprouts is very real, the rest is written with a jokingly tone. In particular I wish to state beforehand that I’m not trying to tie anything to Ciaran and his group, or any other group for what matters.
As it turns out, last night some very funny guy thought that it was a nice idea to call me and tell me I’ll die, obviously with the caller ID withheld. It’s almost certainly a prank call (as a good rationalist, it’s 99.98% a prank call, 0.02% you never know about), but with the cold and the meds in me, I didn’t have the quickness of response to say “you go first and don’t spoilt it to me how it is”.
Just to cover all basis, I’m now considering who might actually want me dead. Which turns out that, if we consider Hans Reiser’s extreme personality cases, might be quite a bit of people. I wouldn’t count Ciaran in the list though, since a) I respect him enough to trust he wouldn’t do it anonymously if he wanted to and b) Stephen is more the person to slander rather than threaten. Beside, that area has been quiet for quite a bit of time that I almost forgot about it.
Last time I was threatened was the time of XMMS removal and it was more than two years ago by now. I don’t think this is related to that at all. But staying on the multimedia side of the fence, I can see a possible issue in people disliking PulseAudio with no good reason (the link is for a positive post); but even though I do lend a hand to Lennart with autotools, I sincerely doubt that my involvement is enough for people to want to get rid of me just for that.
It could have been some anti-Apple activist gone crazy for my previous post praising some of Apple’s products, I guess I should have started with a list of things I don’t like about Apple, or with a list of things that I do for Free Software each day and which is not going to stop just because I can settle for now with Apple products. But there are more chances that if somebody wants me dead is for dissing some projects he likes, it’s not like I didn’t criticise quite a few before, like cmake.
But if we expect this to be tied to something that happened recently, I shouldn’t rule out my criticism of Ruby 1.9 as well as my not-so-recent move from KDE to GNOME (I have to say, why if I move from KDE to GNOME, and I have been a KDE developer, it does not even make a news site, and if Linus does he gets on LWN ? I dare to say this is unjust!). These sound more likely for crazy guys just because they might feel “betrayed” since I was on their side before and then turned away, while for what concerns XMMS, PulseAudio, Apple and CMake I haven’t changed (much) my opinion.
Another option, if we follow what the mass-media has shown of black-hat hackers (even outside our general Western culture, is that somebody got upset about my recent security-oriented work, either because I found some security issue that they tried to hide around. Or it’s another security analyst that is upset because I found so many issues all at once.
All in all, I guess I could have enough reasons to worry if enough FOSS people suffer from the Reiser syndrome. Hopefully this is not the case. The good news is that nobody left me threats on the blog or via e-mail so I really don’t think I have to worry about FOSS people. And please if you think it would be fun to leave them now, just don’t, okay?