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[flagged] SQLite Code of Conduct (sqlite.org)
157 points by lazyloop on Oct 22, 2018 | hide | past | favorite | 60 comments

Of course it is satirical but I think people forget that the CoC's that been gaining traction lately are themselves a response to a real problem.

Yes, some CoC's may be fodder for satire and criticism because they cross the line when it comes to being excessively dogmatic. However, these things exist because online communities have been beset by hordes of assholes for a very long time. Many people feel excluded or are dismissed just because some jerk manages to wield a measure of virtual power.

It would be a mistake to move in the reverse direction now and abandon CoC's. If they're not working, perhaps change them or try something else, but the problem needs to be addressed.

I do not think it is supposed to be satirical. I think it was Richard Hipp's way of writing something down that aligns with his personal values. The CoC even states that people should just try to follow it as well as they can:

> This rule is strict, and none are able to comply perfectly. Grace is readily granted for minor transgressions. All are encouraged to follow this rule closely, as in so doing they may expect to live happier, healthier, and more productive lives. The entire rule is good and wholesome, and yet we make no enforcement of the more introspective aspects.

EDIT: Saw that someones else had already commented on this. Leaving it up anyway. Sorry, folks!

What problem? We didn't need CoC for 20 years, why do we need it now?

because software development has become a professional enterprise, and with that people develop standards on how to interact with each other in large and small organisations, rather than just winging it in a garage.

Anyway, "we didn't need X then, why do we need X now" is an absolutely atrocious argument. Because demands and communities change obviously, and with them how we conduct and organise our communities and organisations.

Not having something isn't the same as not needing something.

"We didn't need X for Y years" is an excellent way of preventing progress, and/or gatekeeping. I feel like this has been covered pretty well online before, but I can expand my thoughts if you'd like.

A lot of sensitive people work in the field now, and they need a set of rules so other people won't be mean to them.

CoCs have been needed for 20 years and more. Now that we're getting them, there's discomfort at the disruption to the status quo, but it's a status quo that desperately needs disruption.

>CoCs have been needed for 20 years and more

No they have not. Everything was and is perfectly fine and cordial without them.

> Everything was and is perfectly fine and cordial without them.

For you.


> The SQLite folks are saying that code of conducts are irrelevant.

Did they? It's a Code of Conduct for communal matters that was written some 1500 years ago. Given that the Benedictine order still exists, it may well be practiced to this day (not sure if they updated it. I wouldn't see a reason.)

Given that there's no larger community around sqlite in the GitHub sense (they usually don't even take patches), and https://twitter.com/drichardhipp claims that DRH is Christian, they could as well pick a CoC that matches the family operation that is driving sqlite.

The page is rather explicit about not having to adhere to the CoC to _use_ sqlite in any shape or form, and you don't get to _develop_ sqlite anyway, so...

OK, but for whatever reason the powers that be at sqlite sees a need to lampoon codes of conduct even though it doesn't apply to them.

I don't see what they're getting out such an act. If CoC's don't apply to them, then may be they should shut-up about CoC's and focus more other things, like sqlite. Or, speak up about the CoC's in communities in which CoC's actually exist.

> If CoC's don't apply to them

From the CoC page: "Having been encouraged by clients to adopt a written code of conduct"

Under my interpretation (not sure if it's the right one - it might as well be satire): "OK, here's a written CoC we abide by", meeting customer demand.

It's interesting that this thing existed for months and only now somebody noticed and created outrage.

    > It's interesting that this thing existed for months and only now somebody noticed and created outrage.
Most folks that use sqlite, would not stumble across that text because they just use the damn thing as-is. But it was raised on HN, so now it is fodder.

The sqlite folks could have just answered to these "clients": "No, a CoC does not apply to us because x, y, z". Instead, they chose to insert themselves into the fray with a fairly aggressive piece of satire as an open letter. It was very much their choice, and they've now gotten themselves a lot negative impressions because of HN exposure, I think.

See http://sqlite.1065341.n5.nabble.com/Regarding-CoC-tp104277p1... for a complete rationale. For the point discussed in this part of the thread: "I published the currrent CoC after two separate business requested copies of our company CoC. They did not say this was a precondition for doing business with them, but there was that implication." and "One final reason for publishing the current CoC is as a preemptive move, to prevent some future customer from imposing on us one of those modern CoCs that I so dislike."

They are developers and participate in various communities affected by CoCs. It's not up to you to decide whether they should or shouldn't speak up about CoCs.

There seems to be a logical flaw in your argument. There's an old saying: "Something must be done about this problem. My plan is something. Therefore it must be done!"

People may disagree on solutions while agreeing on problems, and disagreement with one solution out of many does not mean ignoring a problem.

Saying that code of conducts are irrelevant does not imply that the problems supposedly solved by CoCs do not exist or are not problems. This is a point of basic logic. If you feel the need to misstate your case to this extent, it does not help your credibility.

They are not irrelevant, they are actively harmful. We need to ridicule code of conducts more before this gets out of hand.

Don't like the project community, don't use it, don't advocate for it, don't contribute to it, create an alternative.

Why is this so difficult to understand? Why this wave of active policing?

Dang why is this flagged?

Also as a muslim, it's very amusing to me that there are people who are fighting for me without my asking them and yet them telling me and other muslim it's bad.

It's hilarious what the politically programmed noise-makers think of themselves.

"Politics* isn't allowed on HN"


It is not obvious that this is satire. Mr Hipp (main contributor) links his homepage at http://www.hwaci.com/drh/. From that page, he links his wife (Mrs. Wyrick): http://www.hwaci.com/ggw/index.html. She has among her interests: http://www.hwaci.com/ggw/allerton.pdf "Church Music Resources".

As mentioned elsewhere in this thread: SQLite is "Open-Source, not Open-Contribution". In that context, an openly religious CoC does not seem out of the question.

We don't need to rely on this circumstance. We can point directly to Hipp's own words: https://twitter.com/DRichardHipp/status/1054360847319994368?...

Note that SQLite is, in it's own words, "Open-Source, not Open-Contribution". SQLite does not accept patches from the public.

See https://www.sqlite.org/copyright.html

Looking at the commit history for the project, all of the commits for 2018 have been from just three people (with 98% of those coming from just two of those).

This is a lovely piece of satire given the prevailing obsession with silly CoCs all around.

Replace "God" with "Linus" and "Christ" with "The Linux Kernel Mailing List", and we'll have a decent candidate for a Linux CoC. ;)

CoCs are not silly, they solve very important and real problems.

CoCs on their own solve exactly nothing, they're just a tool that's supposed to enable project leadership to solve certain issues more effectively. Whether they actually serve that function is an open question since the practice is still fairly new. I haven't seen any meaningful evidence one way or the other (feel free to provide some).

While I'm sympathetic to the argument that sufficiently large projects should, on average, benefit from some degree of formalization of behavioral norms (whether you call it a code of conduct or something else), the recent trend of insisting (often abusively) that every open source project, however small, should adopt this practice is silly, annoying and has obviously caused a backlash in some parts of the open source community, hence this thread.

> since the practice is still fairly new

"in tech". The CoC we're discussing here exists - as CoC - for Millenia.

An even older example would be the https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hippocratic_Oath, which might have been more appropriate as an example of a "code of work conduct", but "I swear by Apollo the Healer, by Asclepius, by Hygieia, by Panacea, and by all the gods and goddesses" might rub some people the wrong way, including, in this case, sqlite's author.

I'm specifically talking about open source communities. I think the context of these social structures (spontaneous organization, lack of traditional coercive motivators (money, enforcement mechanisms, social pressure), the fact that many people are pseudonymous, the fact that most projects are effectively tyrannies, etc.) makes them sufficiently distinct from the classical examples you list to make any direct comparison very difficult.

Such as?

From an administrative side: being able to point explicitly to rules that are being broken to shut down an endless "why is X a big deal" and "but he's doing Y and he's not banned".

From a user side: being able to see where the lines are, and being able to see an explicit reason for a punishment. Being able to point out when others are breaking explicit rules. Being able to see and point out hypocrisy.

This does require admins to actually follow the CoCs and to act on them, which I think a lot of people in this thread are actually bitching about. Everyone who says "CoCs don't do anything by themselves" are right, but seatbelts also don't do anything unless they're plugged in, but we should still have 'em in cars.

While we often confuse religion with the practices of the idiots fawning over politicians here in the US, there is beauty to be found in the wisdom of the ancients on occasion.

"1. First of all, love the Lord God with your whole heart, your whole soul, and your whole strength."

Hell, I'm a Muslim and I'd sign on to this CoC without hesitation.

> 66. Do not love quarreling

I'm seeing a problem here.

Yeah, us Sparrow-keepers are OFFENDED !

What has God to do with SQLite?

About as much as pronouns have to do with FreeBSD.

So you think it is bad for folks in the FreeBSD project to not be able to freely insult others by misgendering them? Why is this such a problem for you?

These code of conducts all boil down to "don't be a dick." It's too bad we need them, but we clearly do. Certain groups (LGBT, minorities) tend to get more abuse than others, so issues involving them are often spelled out more explicitly.

All large organizations have written standards of conduct. Open source software projects these days are often large, and are made up of heterogeneous groups of people. It's obvious that CoCs can be useful just the same, to reduce ambiguity in conflict if nothing else.

That’s a nice set of conclusions you’ve jumped to. I didn’t say anything like what you are attributing to me.

FreeBSD has their reasons and expression of the “don’t be a dick” rule, and SQLite has their reasons and expression of the same rule. I don’t see why either one is worth carping about. Both are expressions of cultural values that have nothing to do with the software being produced.

Could you elaborate on that?

FreeBSD's CoC abjures deliberate misgendering. Apparently, this is cause for serious concern among some programmers.

Nothing. You use TempleOS if you want to talk to God.

Best I can tell is satire

I must inform you that this is not satire.

Dangerous not to make that more clear if true.

Isn't the whole point of good satire that it's not immediately evident whether it's a joke or not?

Regardless, I don't see how this satire could be considered dangerous.

> Regardless, I don't see how this satire could be considered dangerous.

Watch the twitter mob forming outside the window!

You can watch the mob forming in realtime. https://twitter.com/search?q=sqlite&src=typd

> "I hope there are discussions at REDACTED today about whether featuring SQLite on their front page is consistent with their values."

> "The message is clear: if you're concerned about diversity, decency, and inclusiveness, stay well away from the SQLite project."

> "I wonder if SQLite Consortium member organizations @mozilla, NDS association, @BentleySystems, @expensify, @business were consulted on this move."

> "This is the as*le: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/D._Richard_Hipp … (thanks @weigandtLabs for finding that out). He _is_ the main SQLite dev. And that's the community he's building. So SQLite is now dead -- or, at least, it should be."

Pathetic. I am not a user of twitter precisely because I have no interest in reading those sort of reactions. But I am strangely fascinated by this continuous stream of 1st degree, knee jerk reactions, it's kind of like watching shit flowing out of a bull's ass...

47. Keep death daily before your eyes.

Oh, don't worry SQLite, I do.

I fucking hope it's satire. Even so, this page should be nuked from orbit. It's shocking that SQLite would allow such a page on their domain.

If you're curious - this practice is so you don't squander your life. Reminders of death are uncomfortable so we tend to avoid them - but they can properly spur us to life with vigor in the time we have.

When I was an athiest, I thought it was good advice at the time.

what does anyone have to do with anything?

pure awesomeness

I agree. I'm enjoying so much the reaction...

That's a joke, right? Right?

Bad bad man. Goofy documents shall only get the benefit of the doubt if they're brought in by postmodernists.

WTF? Please tell this isn't for real.

``` This rule is strict, and none are able to comply perfectly. Grace is readily granted for minor transgressions. All are encouraged to follow this rule closely, as in so doing they may expect to live happier, healthier, and more productive lives. The entire rule is good and wholesome, and yet we make no enforcement of the more introspective aspects.

Everyone is free to use the SQLite source code, object code, and/or documentation regardless of their opinion of and adherence to this rule. SQLite has been and continues to be completely free to everyone, without precondition.```

Do I have to go for confession before every pull request now?

You would have never made a pull request for SQLite anyway, since anyone in a position to do that would know they don't use GitHub.

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