Brett Cannon

The social contract of open source  ↦

Brett Cannon, who is a Python core developer (and a tall, snarky Canadian):

I felt it was time to do another blog post to directly address the issue of entitlement by some open source users which is hurting open source, both for themselves and for others. I want to get the point across that open source maintainers owe you quite literally nothing when it comes to their open source code, and treating them poorly is unethical. And to me, this is the underlying social contract of open source. (emphasis added)

You should read the entire post, especially if you want to learn which programming language (having nothing to do with snakes) that has Brett’s attention. But I’d be remiss not to pull quote this gift of a pull quote from the end:

Every commit of open source code should be viewed as an independent gift from the maintainer that they happened to leave on their front yard for others to enjoy if they so desire; treating them as a means to and for their open source code is unethical.


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2021-04-26T19:20:44Z ago

One thing I didn’t mention in the post is that I partially did this in response to all the recent projects announcing their license changes (e.g. Elastic, Grafana). Taken from the purview of this post, I think you could argue that the license changes shouldn’t cause any angst since it simply means the viability of the next “gift” from that project may not work for you.

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