[openstack-dev] Constructive Conversations

Solly Ross sross at redhat.com
Tue Mar 18 20:07:30 UTC 2014

Since I joined the OpenStack community back in May, this is something I've though about.

I think there's something to be said for thought-to-text being a lossy encoding algorithm (at least
the way most people use it).  I've encountered cases where it appeared the person on the other end was angry or
belittling, where in fact they were just surprised (or perhaps were slightly exasperated).

Sometimes it's seemed like I've had reviews where the first comment feels like
"OMG THIS IS THE WORST THING IMAGINABLE YOU SHOULD GO DIE IN A FIRE" and then I make a change and the next comment
is "you're an awesome person and should feel proud of yourself".

To a certain extent, things like emoji can help to rectify situations like these (that's actually why people started using
them back in the BBS days), but part of it is simply knowing that certain people talk a certain way.  Could some people
be more conscious of how their words could be interpreted?  Certainly, but it's difficult to know how one's words will
be interpreted.  Are there cases of people actually intending to be a dick?  Probably, but I feel like these cases are
dwarfed by the aforementioned cases.

Just my 0.00003 BTC.

Best Regards,
Solly Ross

----- Original Message -----
From: "Chris Behrens" <cbehrens at codestud.com>
To: "OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)" <openstack-dev at lists.openstack.org>
Sent: Tuesday, March 18, 2014 3:25:08 PM
Subject: Re: [openstack-dev] Constructive Conversations

On Mar 18, 2014, at 11:57 AM, Matt Riedemann < mriedem at linux.vnet.ibm.com > wrote: 

Not to detract from what you're saying, but this is 'meh' to me. My company has some different kind of values thing every 6 months it seems and maybe it's just me but I never really pay attention to any of it. I think I have to put something on my annual goals/results about it, but it's just fluffy wording. 

To me this is a self-policing community, if someone is being a dick, the others should call them on it, or the PTL for the project should stand up against it and set the tone for the community and culture his project wants to have. That's been my experience at least. 

Maybe some people would find codifying this helpful, but there are already lots of wikis and things that people can't remember on a daily basis so adding another isn't probably going to help the problem. Bully's don't tend to care about codes, but if people stand up against them in public they should be outcast. 

I agree with the goals and sentiment of Kurt’s message. But, just to add a little to Matt’s reply: Let’s face it. Everyone has a bad day now and then. It’s easier for some people to lose their cool over others. Nothing’s going to change that. 

- Chris 

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