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Sqlite: Code Of Conduct (sqlite.org)
338 points by kragniz on Oct 22, 2018 | hide | past | favorite | 281 comments

Discussion on the sqlite-users mailing list:


From Richard:

"Yes. Clients were encouraging me to have a code of conduct. (Having a CoC seems to be a trendy thing nowadays.) So I looked around and came up with what you found, submitted the idea to the whole staff, and everybody approved."

Leaving aside the religious aspect of the CoC which are probably going to be controversial the other rules are actually fairly common sense. A few that caught my eye:

> Do not give way to anger.

> Do not nurse a grudge.

> Do not entertain deceit in your heart.

> Do not give a false peace.

> Do not swear, for fear of perjuring yourself.

> Utter only truth from heart and mouth.

> Do not return evil for evil.

> Be not a grumbler.

> Be not a detractor.

> Hate no one.

> Be not jealous, nor harbor envy.

> Do not love quarreling.

> Shun arrogance.

> Respect your seniors.

> Love your juniors.

> Make peace with your adversary before the sun sets.

Good rules to live by IMO.

A very tall order, but if you could meet all of those rules you would certainly be the exact kind of person I would hope to run into when contributing to an open-source community <3

I completely agree. Especially with this:

> This rule is strict, and none are able to comply perfectly. Grace is readily granted for minor transgressions.

I'm an atheist. And yet, despite the explicit religious tone, I think this is one of the best codes of conduct I've ever seen. I'd love to see someone write the equivalent document using something less religious, like Aurelius's Meditations as the base.

As a devout Christian (who really does like this Code of Conduct) I would also enjoy seeing a code of conduct based on Meditations.

I applaud your good taste in literature.

The handbook of Epictetus might fit that bill:


Although it's not as compact as Sqlite's CoC.

> Respect your seniors

How about just "respect people".

I've literally seen how "respect your seniors" plays out in reality: any idea from new/junior team members is effectively ignored, because they're not 'senior' enough.

Seriously? The next point is “love your juniors” so what you are saying shouldn’t happen. But then again... I think loving your juniors usually ends up with HR.

Ah, but the original Latin has iuniores diligere, that's means "esteem highly", "regard with affection" & so on. Instead you have these age and gender silos in American society, and the silly sex jokes and the Pence Rule, it's worrisome for anyone who has to navigate through it.

What on earth are you talking about? Can you rephrase in a way that a reasonable person can follow?

Iuniores diligere can mean 'love the juniors' but I suspect St. Benedict used the verb 'diligo' in one of its other meanings:

diligo: love, distinguish by choosing, regard above others, esteem highly, value, prize. Romantic love is 'amo' in latin (and Italian), St. Benedict is not telling you to get into problems with HR when loving anyone.

Iuniores means just what it says, 'the younger' so 'iuniores diligere' does mean 'love the younger' and as such fits perfectly in whatever 'age silo' doctrine you want Americans to accuse of professing. There is no mention of gender at all, nor do Pence or sex jokes come into play here.

love !== respect.

love == respect

I love my brother, but I don't respect him (most of the time), since he's a bit of dork. I still love him, because of our relationship, the shared experiences and the knowledge he'd be here when I need him.

I respect my boss, because she's my senior, she is a good leader and a competent dev in her own right. But I don't love her.

I love peanut butter.

Ah, but it doesn't state you should love those of equal age or standing - depending on how you interpret 'junior' and 'senior' so there is still some room for complaints here.

Not serious, of course, if any 'CoC' is needed I'd say "just behave" or "do not do unto others what you wouldn't have done upon yourself" should suffice. Rule #9 in the Rule of St. Benedict already states something similar, now just get rid of the rest and you're done.

While you are correct that “respect people” is a better general purpose rule, you are throwing out the baby with the bath water: experience is valuable.

I didn't say ignore senior opinions. I said don't ignore juniors.

Did you miss the rule about loving your juniors?

Love !== respect.

Yes it does; you have a fundamental misunderstanding of one, the other, or both

Pretty much any dictionary on the planet will disagree with you.

But then, so does basic logic. But I mean, we're debating an open source project that has adopted a Code of Conduct, with point one demanding that contributors believe in a superstitious all powerful being.

We're way past fucking logic here aren't we.

If there is value in this semantic quibbling you have failed to illustrate it.

The technology industry is rife with ageism. There isn't nearly as much outrage about it as there should be.

I agree. Giving someone undue respect just because they're old is ageism. Some old people never really grew up and are still jerks (I plan on being one of them; getting my grumpy on).

Respect everyone.

Senior in this context probably means superiors. Someone has to look the original Latin version up.

yes, good rules, but as a CoC it’s a bit much, and very preachy. The phrase, “And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?” springs readily to mind. I hope the author is a saint.

> I hope the author is a saint.

Saint Benedict is a saint, last I checked.

The author or the COC, come on, that was clear in the context of my post.

On 19 Oct 2018, at 6:26pm


> Yeah, that's gonna magically appear on Hacker News within the month. For those curious ...

Someone should also point him here:


I don't care much for CoCs but the tone of the README makes me think that the author is the type of people CoCs are written for (or against). A page long strawman rant.

If you don't care about CoC then don't have one. Don't use this passive aggressive "let me write a thousand word essay to let you know how much I don't care about or have time to deal with CoCs".

>However, if someone tells you you are stupid, or wrong. Stop. Think. Does this have anything to do with your race, region, religion, or anything else not related to this project? This is a tricky one. Have you considered, that they are either having a bad day, are a bad listener, or possibly, you are wrong? If you feel you're not wrong, please, by all means, reply.

If I call somebody stupid in the context of a technical contribution to a project then I'm being unprofessional and out of line. Doesn't mean that I should automatically be executed publicly but I don't see why it should be the person being insulted who should introspect to figure out what I meant exactly.

Oh and if I contribute to your project and you call me stupid I can assure you that I won't reply, I'll get out of here as fast as I can and never return.

Best CoC I have ever seen! I do not think that it is joke. From sqlite's source code:

The author disclaims copyright to this source code. In place of a legal notice, here is a blessing: May you do good and not evil. May you find forgiveness for yourself and forgive others. May you share freely, never taking more than you give.

Was it sqlite that had a special clause allowing redhat users to use it for evil purposes?

Douglas Crockford gave a license to IBM to use JSLint for evil https://www.cnet.com/news/dont-be-evil-google-spurns-no-evil...

I am surprised at how dismissive and intolerant the comments here are of this code of conduct. And I say this as an atheist that still harbors a lot of resentment against my family's religion.

Do you have so little empathy that you can't possibly image someone adopting The Rule of St. Benedict in good faith (no pun intended)?

I don't think that the problem is adopting in bad or good faith; personally I am saddened because the CoCs are meant to be there to protect people that are usually in a weaker position and in our development communities that usually identifies with a few categories: women, LGBT+, disabled people etc.

Now if you look at it from this point of view I think that you can at least see the irony of using a religious text in this context; to be more clear, quoting their webpage:

> This code of conduct has proven its mettle in thousands of diverse communities for over 1,500 years

Those "thousands of diverse communities" include the ones who were using their religion as a pretext to burn heretics/witches, torture homosexuals and in general oppress the weak and the diverse as well as the ones that today are still trying to infuse young people with their toxic shame when they are non-conforming.

This is what really grinds my gears: some people would do anything to NOT take responsibility and hide themselves behind nice words with little to no real content.

> Those "thousands of diverse communities" include the ones who were using their religion as a pretext to burn heretics/witches, torture homosexuals and in general oppress the weak and the diverse as well as the ones that today are still trying to infuse young people with their toxic shame when they are non-conforming.

Wow, those Benedictine monks have really been up to some heavy shit.

They owned actual slave plantations, too: https://www.jstor.org/stable/981267

We don't often talk about the thousands of years of human rights abuses by monastic orders, but they are pretty horrific. Even in America in living memory, it includes the torture and murder of children and the coverup of those crimes: https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/christinekenneally/orph...

That last read was truly grim.

However, to reject the Rule of St Benedict because some Benedictines lived in egregious violation of it is like rejecting the United States Bill of Rights because the United States has often acted in direct violation of it.

The Rule is, on the whole, a wonderful document, and there are today and have been through history a great many good people who live it day in and day out fairly faithfully. I'm privileged to call some such people my friends.

Here the discussion was a bit broader and the point was about the religious context rather than the Benedictine themselves.

To be fair the Benedictine order wasn't one of the worst orders with respct to whole witch/heresy craze but that kinda furthers the irony of the whole situation: watching to the other side while someone is being persecuted (or bullied) puts you closer to the oppressor than to the oppresed.

> watching to the other side while someone is being persecuted (or bullied) puts you closer to the oppressor than to the oppresed.

This would then dismiss every CoC-related effort, because most enforcers do little regarding humans being persecuted in other countries...

This is a bit of a logical fallacy: the fact that you are not able (maybe even because of your own limited self) to do good in every possible context it doesn't mean that you shouldn't do good in the contexts whee you can!

It is, and that's what I tried to highlight with my comment.

Apply your comment to the monks then.

I'm pretty sure that many monks individuals did the best they could with what they were given. That is very different from it being true for the whole order of the Benedictine.

At the same time I do believe that the spirit of Christianity, Islam and most other religions is inherently good, positive and inclusive and there are definitely people that use that as a guide to improve themselves and their lives.

BUT, even if the spirit is good, the actual history says that these organisation shouldn't be held on a moral high ground for anything because they don't deserve it.

Moreover, even today, chances are that if you are a non-conforming individual in a very religious community you are subject to isolation, bullying and shaming.

And that's why I find it of very bad taste to use this as a CoC that should guide integration: if I have been bullied from my ultra-religious community, for example because I am bisexual, then I'll not find that a very welcoming sign.

Traditionaly, burning heretics was a State matter, guilt was decided by a special group, the Inquisition. Heretics were burned (or had other punishment against them, like fines, emprisonment, prayers or house arrests) because it was a state matter, following the principle of Religion of the King = Religion of the People.

I see what you did there!

Religion and Church are not to be blame, since as soon as there is any blame going around, the State, and not religion / church, is responsible!


Yes, I see what I'm doing here.

> who were using their religion as a pretext to burn heretics/witches, torture homosexuals and in general oppress the weak and the diverse as well as the ones that today are still trying to infuse young people with their toxic shame when they are non-conforming.

While I cannot and will not defend everything that has been done in the name of my religion it's kind of disingenuous to discuss this without simultaneously acknowledging that more people have been murdered and tortured with a pretext of reason and lack of religion.

> CoCs are meant to

Stop right there. You have no authority over what a person chooses to adopt as a "code of conduct". They can be for whatever purpose they choose. It is up to others to accept them or not.

> Those "thousands of diverse communities" include the ones who were using their religion as a pretext to burn heretics/witches, torture homosexuals and in general oppress the weak and the diverse as well as the ones that today are still trying to infuse young people with their toxic shame when they are non-conforming.

Citation needed. When did the OSB do any of this?

> so little empathy that you can't possibly image someone adopting The Rule of St. Benedict in good faith

I think it's more that the wording suggests the author pushing his own faith onto others.

That's what every CoC does.

I've never heard of a CoC demanding belief in a specific deity before.

If you don't believe in (or criticise) the faith of Intersectionality, then you are subject to persecution and expulsion. There's a very disturbing parallel with the beliefs and aims of militant SJWs and the some of the worst aspects of religious intolerance. CoCs such as the "contributor covenant" are a way of enforcing these beliefs as some kind of religious document, in effect. This makes the SQLite CoC a humourous parody of this type of CoC, being an actual religious document; this is one reason for the "outrage": religion doesn't like fun being poked at it.

Most Codes of Conduct prescribe to ideas of patriarchy or intersectionality - if you don't believe in these, then you are generally reeducated or expelled.

I have seen equal evidence for the existence of a God as I have the existence of a Patriarchy.

I think he can't possibly do that as SQLite doesn't accept contributions. There are literally zero people impacted by this CoC that weren't in on it from the beginning.

Who are those others, precisely?

Suppose the authors fancied themselves a modern monastic order, is this necessarily bad?

Agnostic here.

Sure, why not? Group codes of conduct are a form of mutually-enforced morality. Why not pick up a template that seems to have worked in the past and reuse parts of it?

It all won't fit, of course, but why re-invent the wheel? I'm really much more interested in the track record of how various of these items worked out (or not) than I am in impeaching the source. Who cares about that stuff?

Can I imagine it? Sure. Can i accept it? Hell no.

I can imagine someone adopting in good faith a code of conduct that says “no colored people.” That doesn’t mean I’ll be happy about it.

What rules in St. Benedict are comparable to "no coloreds" in your mind? Or do you find them unacceptable due to the context, i.e. that they are part of a larger religious text?

The very first rule is comparable. We generally consider religious discrimination to be on the same level as racial discrimination.

Do you truly _believe_ that? Would you say that is one of some number of truths you take on _faith_?

Yes, I believe that. I don’t take it on faith, I take the “we” part from the fact that religious and racial discrimination tend to be found in the same lists in the laws that outlaw discrimination against certain classes.

This says more of "we're lazy and don't actually care to do this seriously" more than it says anything in good faith.

Yes, it's meant as a joking stab at those who seemingly cannot live without having a CoC everywhere. Especially in projects they do not actually participate in. Now watch as this gets blown out of proportion, because this will make some people really, really angry. Id be very surprised if this stays up actually.

I don't think so. The CoC prohibits joking in clause 54.

It's not a joke. Dr. Hipp is a genuinely religious person, and he means this seriously.

As an atheist, how could this possibly make someone mad?

Because if you take it as a satirization of the adoption of CoC's, it's saying "we don't think CoC's address real problems and we'll do it with a general set of ideals that do nothing to solve problems".

Which ignores the very real problem of harassment in tech.

According to others, the creator is actually a highly religious person. Why are you assuming that it's satire?

Given the context, I don't think they are mutually exclusive. It could be both a religious text and satirising other CoCs which are essentially religious in their own right.

Because half the comments in this thread are saying it's satire?

This does not seem like satire in the least. The rules seem more like common sense than anything humorous.

Unless there's enforcement, it's useless as a code of conduct.

Why? Why are people so concerned with "enforcement", which is basically "punishment"?

A code of conduct should be nothing more than a set of guidelines which contributors should aspire to meet. It's not a legal text, and it's not a religious text. We are free participants in projects, not unwilling subjects to be disciplined.

We've gone from projects where one was expected to behave properly, and if not would be politely admonished, and maybe kicked out if this continued over a long period, to this, where the CoC is to be used as a blunt instrument to punish transgressors. It's not an improvement, and I dislike the assumptions of bad faith and requirement for punishment. It's unnecessary, and sets the wrong tone.

I have a non-enforceable CoC for you:

"To participate in this community, you need to kill three people by Sunday"

Simple. Also, I hope you have nothing against it, since it is not enforceable.

Seems like all the contributors are on board. What more enforcement do you need?

People who hold religious beliefs that people following this code spent hundreds of years trying to stamp out with violence probably have a different context that people to whom it is merely irrelevant.

The CoC does not require religious belief in the least. They are secular rules.

By this same logic, we should reject all scientific research that predates nation state funding.

You might have missed these:

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

> Deny oneself in order to follow Christ.

> Prefer nothing more than the love of Christ.

> Put your hope in God.

> Attribute to God, and not to self, whatever good you see in yourself.

> Fear the Day of Judgment.

> Be in dread of hell.

> Know for certain that God sees you everywhere.

> When wrongful thoughts come into your heart, dash them against Christ immediately.

> Devote yourself frequently to prayer.

> Daily in your prayers, with tears and sighs, confess your past sins to God, and amend them for the future.

> Obey in all things the commands of those whom God has placed in authority over you even though they (which God forbid) should act otherwise, mindful of the Lord's precept, "Do what they say, but not what they do." (!!!)

> Do not wish to be called holy before one is holy; but first to be holy, that you may be truly so called.

> Fulfill God's commandments daily in your deeds.

> Pray for your enemies in the love of Christ.

> Never despair of God's mercy.

Religious discrimination isn’t ok and being annoyed by it isn’t blowing things out of proportion.

I see the religious part of this CoC as purely incidental to the source material (it being 15 centuries old and aimed at christian monks). It's clearly not meat to be taken serious, even though I'd agree with a lot of the common sense points listed. Now, being a bit annoyed at the religious implications is not being really angry and blowing things out of proportion. Being annoyed still leaves room for discussion. What I meant is the major poop flinging through major publications that will undoubtedly follow over the next few days, activating large swaths of those people I mentioned. Those who thrive on nonconstructive anger. In general I'd agree with you, just leave religion out of it, even when it's (or especially?) in a joking manner. Edit: Typo

I see the religious part as being the entire point, since it comes from a religious order. The very first rule is about loving a particular deity. If we were to go back in time and find these people, what do you think would offend them more, “I hold grudges” or “there is no god”?

I daresay that a difference in opinion like that would probably not trigger most people back in that age in the same manner it seems to do so now (on both sides - I'm not picking on one side here).

People went to war over not believing in the same particular flavour of god.

While there have been people who have done things like this in all ages (and also over believing there is NO God, as opposed to just the wrong one), your statement is not as accurate as it could be in most cases if you take into account the context of those wars.

That said, Benedictine monks would not be at or near the top of my list for people who would get all triggered, angry, and go to war over you disagreeing that God exists.

Yes, people fiercely defend what they love and believe. But it's possible to do so graciously and firmly without being angry or freaking out that someone disagrees with you (I am not referring to you specifically, but you, myself, our readers, mankind, etc).

Given that the lead of the SQLite project's personal website has references to an organisation that translates religious Scripture, I'm not sure it really is a "joking stab".

> this will make some people really, really angry

Suggesting that a text written by Christians is a good basis for an OSS project's CoC, when Christianity has a pretty fucking horrific track record when it comes to most of the people who, without Codes of Conduct are pushed out of or never welcome in OSS projects, and you're surprised that people might be angry?

Right in the first section, people:

"However, those who wish to participate in the SQLite community, either by commenting on the public mailing lists or by contributing patches or suggestions or in any other way, are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that honors the overarching spirit of the rule, even if they disagree with specific details. Polite and professional discussion is always welcomed, from anyone."

Edit: I am not religious at all.

If the religious details won't be enforced, there's no reason for them to be in the CoC. This CoC exists in its current form solely because Richard Hipp is very religious.

Did you read the SQLite CoC? All of it?

Hint: there is a clause pointing out that complete adherence is impossible and that the aim is to conduct oneself as much as possible by The Rule.

People seem to be upset about the religious parts of the code of conduct, just read the overview, it's in no way intended to force religion onto people.

If the religious bits was to be deleted, it would be hard for anyone to disagree.

I see it as no less good or bad than any other code of conduct I've seen. Most of them could be used to throw anyone out of any project, if you chose to do so. The code of conducts for a lot of projects are so selectively enforced that is ridiculous.

I don't think any of this is meant to be serious anyway. This is literally a set of rules meant for a order of ascetic monks. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rule_of_Saint_Benedict

Although, religious aspects aside, there are many valuable tenets to be found in there, which will be directly opposed by those who want to get angry about it.

Leaving aside everything else, using the rule of St. Benedict and pointing out its influence on medieval thought seems like poor choice. Benedictine monasteries were often notoriously corrupt. There were frequent attempts at Benedictine reform, but it was almost always that case that in a few decades, the reformers would become more corrupt than those they were initially criticizing.

And, of course, is medieval government actually something to aspire to? Medieval European governments were extremely unstable, collapsed frequently (often due to assassination), rarely went a decade without civil war/armed rebellion, their legal systems were patchy and inconsistent, and almost all of them had laws which separated punishments for commoners and noble-born. The fact that medieval law was influenced by the Benedictine rule seems like a reason to reject it.

Given the selective enforcement of some of these modern day religious texts (CoCs), one could strongly argue that the people with the power to enforce the CoC are already showing corruption far worse than any inappropriate conduct they purport to solve.

Code of conduct still requires enforcement.

I do get a little joy on my monday morning that there are still people out there doing good work who can just tell people in a pig's eye when they are pressured to do stupid things.

An interesting mirroring of the popular CoCs these days. While they enshrine what one could call "San Francisco Democrat" values, this CoC enshrines christian conservative values.

If you think value-based CoCs are fine, you shouldn't have a problem with this.

They're certainly Christian values, but they're not "conservative", at least not by the American definition. I'll point you to these tenets:

* Relieve the poor. * Clothe the naked. * Visit the sick.

... those seem like "liberal values" to me, at least on the American spectrum.

Christ never advocates for the state to do anything. These are individual commands.

Christ does exhort his followers to render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s, and Democrats believe the state acts on behalf of the populace to perform tasks that we individually could not do. So a community can clothe and house the poor better than an individual can.

Clothing and housing are artefacts of this world, not the kingdom of Christ. Ergo rendering unto Caesar what is caesar’s involves providing clothing and housing to those who do not have it, with the state as proxy and effort multiplier.

Yeah, the "render unto Caesar" episode was so much deeper than just "pay your taxes."

Also, whatever the state does, it accomplishes through the threat of violence to collect taxes. For a Christian, the ends are as important as the means.

I think they can be both - the liberal vs conservative part is merely the means by which you do so - do you vote small parts of other people's property to the task or do you donate your own property voluntarily to the task.

And lest this seem like a conservative jab - it is not intended in any such manner - I willingly admit that in those times the system worked completely different than it does now in ways that would create a great deal of consternation in both modern liberals AND conservatives.

Not to get into a huge political philosophy discussion here, but conservative people are on average some of the biggest donators to charitable groups who focus on tenets such as these. The "liberals" don't have a corner on wanting to help people, although people disagree how that help should be organised.

Isn't homelessness the worst in California?

You are explicitly associating virtuous characteristics with "liberals" and suggesting that "conservatives" don't have those virtues.

Very divisive and unfounded IMHO.

If you are equivocating this CoC to Republican conservative values, you are laughably wrong.

I did not say Republican. Nor did I mean Republican.

Because I'm not a complete moral relativist, I think there is a difference between good values and bad values

That's almost a tautology. Everyone find their own values good, and other people's values less good (if not downright bad).

In any case, you might have gained some understanding of why other people get upset, when _your_ values are imposed on them.

And those people are wrong. It's OK, and necessary, for human beings to make ethical judgments. The correct position is one that minimizes suffering, not one that absolves itself of the responsibility to make difficult choices, in deference to some arbitrary, inhumane objectivity.

'Rule of Saint Francisco' :D

Of course value-based CoCs are fine. The problem with this isn't the content, it's the fact that they're using the content because they fundamentally disagree with codes of conduct.

So you would be fine if projects started adoping CoCs like these, if they did so seriously?

Their house, their rules. I can choose to not participate.

What values are you referring to?

By "San Francisco Democrat"? I mean the values held by the average Democrat-voting San Franciscan.


So what is the game here? Put a random noun between "…" and "?"?

Let me try:


Are you trying to communicate or be a dick? The only universal value I am aware of in san francisco is capitalism.

I would ask the same thing of you. Are you playing dumb or are you really not aware that SF is kinda out there on the U.S. left wing?

If I, a european who've only visited the U.S. a handful of times, know more of U.S. politics than you do, I really don't know what to say.

It’s only left wing in a very meaningless definition of left wing. I live there :) San Francisco hasn’t deserved the reputation for decades at this point. It’s the stronghold of Pelosi, a neoliberal and a staunch centrist. Ditto with Feinstein.

It sounds like you have no clue what "left wing" means when you refer to capitalists as "left wing". Because generally, it refers to anti-capitalists (socialists, anarchists etc).

By "San Francisco Democrat" do you mean "gay people exist and are fine"? Or "women are an equal part of society"? I'm having trouble unraveling your dogwhistle here.

You're basically saying that putting "SF Dem" in front of anything makes it less evil. Brainwashed.

Maybe it would go better if you just took my words at face value instead of trying to find some way to misinterpret them.

I don't understand the purpose of this. I hope it's an elaborate joke, but it is surprisingly unprofessional.

A few years ago I spent some time in their dev mailing list and proposed a patch. I doubt I'd still do this in this context. This code of conduct that requires members to honor th Christ, even as a joke, would make me reluctant to interact with SQLite.

> This code of conduct that requires members to honor Christ

Does it? It says that it requires developers to conduct themselves in a manner that honors the overarching spirit of the rule.

The overarching spirit of the rule is worship of a particular deity. “First of all, love the Lord God with your whole heart, your whole soul, and your whole strength.”

Only if you are looking for it. I imagine most adults can translate through time and culture without much issue. Literalists tend to be evangelical christians, who probably wouldn’t mind.

It hammers you on the head with it at the very beginning. There’s no need to “look for it,” it’s right there.

It strikes me as really weird that’s all you can see, especially as a grown adult, but to each their own.

It’s not all I can see. It’s all I’m commenting on, because the rest is unremarkable.

Well, it mentions Christ 4 times ...

Other CoCs mention other idealizations lots of times.

Sure. My comment was in reply to a comment which said that this:

> This code of conduct that requires members to honor Christ

was not true.

Yes, but when did professionalism become a requirement for open source software?

When people started having both standards and options. I can choose between a college frathouse and a productive guild hall: why would I live in a frathouse?

Indeed. Choose away. Of course in the end you choose the one with functioning plumbing.

It was a disqualification once upon a time, or at least a severe black mark to atone for.

> Yes, but when did professionalism become a requirement for open source software?

About the point where a third developer joined a project.

One person can slag himself all day long and it's just crazy muttering.

Two people can slag each other all day long and it's he said/she said or some combination thereof.

Three people ... dammit, there's a witness.

Poe's Law in action.

requires members to honor the Christ

The text does not permit this interpretation.

strictly, the text does not permit any interpretation, since:

> conduct themselves in a manner that honors the overarching spirit of the rule

which is hot air.

Having a code of conduct isn't about creating rules, it's about making a public commitment to enforce them.

Now that they've shown us that they clearly don't care about a code of conduct, I wouldn't trust them to ever handle any actual conduct issues in a reasonable way. Maybe they'd just send me a joke instead.

> Speak no useless words or words that move to laughter.

Aww here goes my entire social coping strategy.

That being said: this is a stab at Linux CoC? I can see the humour in it but... Seems unprofessonal for a project as SQLite?

Didn't we all encounter bosses who would call endless meetings and who would laugh at points that they could not understand? This one is important, even if the fellow from the Name of the Rose had a strange take on it.

Upvoted for the reference. If only we had a copy of the Second Book of Poetics...

Why was this comment downvoted?

It was added in Feb 2018. So, no.

Where did you find this info?

The Wayback machine got a snapshot from mid March 2018 at least : https://web.archive.org/web/20180315125217/https://sqlite.or...

Git commit date

It's older than the Linux Code of Conduct, since it was introduced in February of this year.

> 39. Be not a grumbler.

Oh dear. That's basically all of us.

There goes my day job.

Awesome. It's the first CoC for a FOSS project which sets the plank for good behaviour high enough!

Great! I can't wait for another project adopting an Islamic CoC (not to be enforced!), and read the comments.

What would be wrong with that?

Nothing (not worse than this CoC at least).

But the comments would be waaay different.

First, I never knew SQLLite was quite so religious,

Second 69. Love your juniors. Really? Won't HR get involved?

Well you also shall not commit adultery so marry them first.

For the second point, see https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=18278892, which give details on that rule.

Remember you can love your juniors you just can’t lurve your juniors.

I will also remind you of three important words: Filos, Eros and Agape.

Just to call the police.

Fascinating! Some folks really need a reminder of what "inclusiveness" means.

Are there any studies proving the effectiveness of CoCs ? Like, more active contributors, or a bigger market share, on projects after they adopted their CoC?

The ultimate CoC to put an end to this silly practice.

I don't think it will put an end to this as many people are simply too afraid to refuse (heck, even Linus gave in!), but if other projects react in a similar way, it will be a breath of fresh air and make it more difficult to enforce SoC for all open source projects.

I had to read this as an elaborate joke around such codes. It'd be certainly amusing to see people trying to be in compliance.

Why? Seems to me more likely a sincere attempt to communicate the author's own code of conduct, and the spirit in which he has offered sqlite to his neighbors.

What makes you think people being respectful to each other would be amusing?

The religious ones, in special, are hard to follow for an Atheist like me. I suppose members of non-Christian religions will find it difficult too. This shortcoming is so salient it's hard to imagine it never came up in discussions.

This reminds me of that joke about which life choice a vegan Crossfitter will bring up first :D

@dang Why was this flagged?

Isn't the flagging process automated, which would mean enough commenters flagged it? If there was a manual review of the flags, it would be nice to have at least a short comment from mods as to why they took action.

Ahh, entirely possible.

I'd also like to know this. It may have been due to the ensuing flame-war in the discussion.

Ha. Needs some tweaks here and there but it’s a good start!

I think it needs to be more specific, which God? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_deities_by_classificat...

Well, a Christ is mentioned in 4 different rules. I feel like it's probably jesus

the best and strongest one ofc

For me, rule 11 conflicts with rules 59 and 63. There is a merge conflict.

Rule of St.Benedict is good, although much of it is not applicable to computer software development, some of it is only meaningful to Christians (I don't mean that it is bad or unwelcoming to non-Christians, but rather that it is meaningless), and some of it is less suitable outside of monastic orders. However, the preface corrects these problems (as many others have mentioned too), to make it suitable.

I have no problem with the people if they are Christian or Jewish or Wiccan or atheist or whatever (although this is independent from if you are good at this computer programming; Knuth is Christian and he is one of the best of the computer programmers in my opinion). Also, I have no problem to use SQLite regardless of the CoC; I still think it is a good software.


We've adopted the Saint Benedict rule too: http://dailyprog.org/rule/

We will adopt similar codes from different traditions of the world.

I can't wait to see people get reported for merely being slightly afraid of hell rather than in actual dread of hell.

Of course, since there's no enforcement mechanism this seems to be just an attempt to get credit with customers without actually caring about the question they were really asking.

Interesting to see so many people defending this, either on the basis of “it’s satire” or “it says you don’t have to follow every single rule.”

Would you be saying the same thing if it said “Allah” instead of “God”? What if it said you had to love Osama bin Laden? What if rule 1 was “love white people”?

Religious discrimination is poor fodder for satire and is not something we should just selectively ignore.

Edit: wonder what the downvotes are about. Don’t like seeing Yahweh compared to ObL, maybe? Well, my point exactly.

As an atheist, I love this CoC. Because these comments like yours are illuminating the non-inclusive, intolerant, authoritarian ideology taking over the CoC-wielding open source community these days. So yes, I'd be fine with "Allah."

And this is why I don’t like this CoC. It reinforces the idea that religious people get to do what they want and the rest of us should just be quiet about it.

How exactly is it “intolerant” to object to a CoC that can only be followed by adherents of a particular religion?

Same. I am a lifelong atheist and I think the CoC is great.

Although I vehemently disagree with the beliefs of Muslims, I have always had a great deal of respect for the fact that they are unapologetic about them.

I, for one, appreciate this whole thing.

If I were required to love Osama bin Laden, well, my Lord Himself requires us to 'love our enemies', and 'pray for those who persecute you'.

There is no religious discrimination here. It appears that some seem to believe that if religion is mentioned, that is discrimination. But that word does not mean that.

You’re breaking the rules if you’re not Christian. How is that not discrimination?

> In the future, should someone wish to become a core developer of SQLite and is in every way qualified except that he or she does not feel comfortable with some details of this rule (for example, the overtly religious elements), then appropriate adjustments can be made at that point. The objective of the rule is not to impose a particular religious creed, but rather to use time-tested behavioral guidelines to promote a productive and peaceful community.

I think the downvotes attest to the facetiousness of your comments.

I would fully expect references to Allah to be treated in the same way by the people who commented positively about this work.

I’m not being facetious at all. Maybe Allah would be treated the same way, although I doubt it. I’m really sure my other examples wouldn’t.

I’m not sure your other examples are fair

Osama was a convicted war criminal, and “white people” are demonstrably different from deities

What’s unfair about it? Yahweh’s kill count is way higher, if the Bible is to be believed.

Why not try out your theory by attributing the CoC for your ridiculously successful opensource project to allah?

"This code of conduct has proven its mettle in thousands of diverse communities for over 1,500 years" LOL

Joke or not, dick move either way.

Why do you think that?

"Having a CoC seems to be a trendy thing nowadays."

Here, then, is an example of how society falls. Never has any good come out of such things, and for as long as one seeks to dominate, oppress and limit another in any such way, no matter how sweet the words, their meaning will forever remain imprisonment of another.

Besides enforcing religious beliefs with history of multiple genocides, this is bad CoC.

It is toothless. What are procedures when someone in community breaks rules? There is no board to decide, no email to report, no process to take place. Do I pray to the Lord?

This is pure trolling without merit.

I don't think it's trolling, but I agree that it's missing an email adress to report and what the process would be.

Am I the only person who was angered because I assumed they were doing a piss-take on a serious subject?

Fuck's sake, people - learn how to explain yourselves in the context of your known readership.

This is now the dumbest CoC I've seen today, and the RMS one set quite the low bar. Any actual enforceable CoC that may get adopted loses any credibility with this move.

I think everyone should try to do the best to get along with others. That said, I wouldn't even cry if that would be that case.

No COC will improve anything. It just might divide contributors without any benefit.

Any actual critique or are you just gonna scream at the moon?

Well this is surely extraordinary among codes of conduct, with its direct mention of God. It's bound to ruffle a lot of feathers, and act as a beacon for culture war.

Hyperbolic bullshit solves everything, right?

How immature. If you disagree with having a code of conduct, then not having one seems preferable to making it an insult to those asking for one.

Be not a grumbler

Edit: in all seriousness (in accordance with The Rule), I think open mockery from a serious project is extrodinarily important

What part if it is the insult?

How do you figure?

Be not addicted to wine. Be not a great eater. Be not drowsy. Be not lazy. Be not a grumbler.

Guess I can't use SQLite anymore…

The CoC explicitly says that it only applies to Sqlite devs, not users.


This rule applies to SQLite developers, not to users of the SQLite code. 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.

Is this an elaborate joke or something?!

Seems more like them telling people to stop bothering them with divisive CoC bullshit. In a similar vein to NCoC


This is 100% absurd.

If the code of conduct angers you, stop and think -- how did you feel one minute before you read the CoC? Is the problem really the CoC, or is it your collection of beliefs that is causing the problem? Furthermore, are you even affected? Do you contribute bug reports or patches? Follow the SQLite mailing list? Is anything here designed to prevent you from continuing to do so?

SQLite's author is a spiritual guy. There's nothing wrong with him borrowing from spiritual sources to describe his ideal for how he wants the SQLite community to conduct itself.

#1 on the list is: First of all, love the Lord God with your whole heart, your whole soul, and your whole strength.

I'm an atheist - I am unable and unwilling to comply with this CoC. So yes, I would say that I am affected.

Other well known religious folk in the foss world, such as Larry Wall, do not insist on this kind of exclusion.

Good news, the CoC is inclusive for you, with the following:

"those who wish to participate" ... "are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that honors the overarching spirit of the rule, even if they disagree with specific details. Polite and professional discussion is always welcomed, from anyone."

In other words, calm down.

It's weird, though, right? I mean, flip the logic.

What if someone had a code of conduct that was clearly about people treating each other well...but started it with "First, you must acknowledge that there is no God." Or "First you must acknowledge that Mohammad is God's messenger." Or "First you must accept the mitzvot as binding." Or "Brahman is Truth and Reality."

None of these is promoting inclusion.

That said: I'm an observer here. I haven't chosen to participate or not participate in the SQLite community because of this. I simply think it's a strange place to promote one's religion, and it doesn't surprise me that non-Christians might find it unwelcoming.

I reject this premise that every CoC must "promote inclusion" i.e. be approved in full by some social marxist Politburo notionally intended to protect everyone's "feelings" by expunging and banning everything that might be considered "offensive". If you want that for your own project, fine, but you have no right to force it onto others.

In any case, western civ has deep roots in the christian tradition and I don't know any atheists that are so extremely fragile or sensitive that they are "offended" by simply seeing people repeating 1500+ year old fragments of it. Especially when they use the disclaimers that were used here.

I'm not trying to force anyone to do anything, and I'm not sure where you came up with the idea that I am. If someone wants their OSS project to be appealing to the 1/6th of the people in the world who consider themselves to be Christians, that's fine.

If they want to try to be appealing to, say, 7/7ths of the developers out there, they might want to do something different.

> appealing to the 1/6th of the people in the world who consider themselves to be Christians

I don’t consider myself Christians but I like CoC a lot. It even made me think why I only used sqlite when I had to.

To me the CoC doesn’t say I’m excluded. It says a couple of other things however, that author’s not ashamed of who he is, he’s sincere, and he knows about 1st amendment. I think all of these things are good.

Well i love Sqlite and also don't consider myself Christian and i am quite baffled by this. I mean this is some strange place to promote Christianity. It is suprising considering how tech tries to always paint itself as apolitical.

Seriously i can't imagine the uproar and hate if he was a Muslim. Imagine how many tech leads would immediately start figuring out how to completely change their stack and replace sqlite with leveldb.

If he were a muslim and added some Sufi-inspired rules I don't think there would have been more complaints than the Rule of St. Benedict gave rise to. If he cited those parts of islamic scripture which call for conquest by the sword there would - hopefully - have been uproar as those espouse an exclusive and oppressive ideology, just like there would have been more of an uproar if the sqlite project cited the more vile parts of, say, Deuteronomium.

I see this 'code of conduct' as a literary form of pro-biotics [1], there to protect against invasion by harmful non-transcendental religions like intersectionality which have the capacity to sow discord and tear communities apart into warring factions. Even though I do not believe in transcendental gods I have no problems accepting the Rule as I see it for what it is, an abstraction of monastic life written to the benefit of medieval monks. I am under no vow of obedience or poverty and I am rarely in a situation where I have to bury the dead so I know I can skip those parts which are not applicable. In truth, I realise I can skip just about everything except the bit which tells me to treat others as I'd like to be treated myself.

[1] a mixture of safe bacteria which is supposed to colonise the gut to keep the bad ones out

Um, that isn't flipping the logic at all.

It says 'love God'. It doesn't say 'acknowlege God exists'. The latter may be a prerequisite of the former, but the explicit rules are distinct, and have different flavors.

Ok then, imagine if rule 1 were “hate God with every fiber of your being.”

Your logic is at fault, at least regarding atheists: atheists are expected to be tolerant of religious beliefs, but no religious person is expected to be tolerant of atheist (non-) beliefs.

Expected by whom? There were and are "warlike" atheists, who actively fight, mock and even eradicate religious objects and people, and there are, thankfully, a lot of religious people, who tolerate atheists' non-beliefs.

Aside from the fact that the SQLite CoC does not use the language "you must", none of those statements bother me.

I think the SQLite's author is just trying to make a statement of "hey, there's us Christians out here, and this is actually what we believe in[1]".

1. Let's just avoid the reality that there are many people who call themselves Christians who don't follow those rules, and do many horrible things. Those people exist in virtually every demographic.

If the religious requirements of the CoC aren't going to be enforced, there's no reason for them. They exist because Richard Hipp is religious.

They exist because this is a bad faith effort of creating a CoC that only exists to mock the idea of CoCs

The overarching spirit of The Rule of St. Benedict is service to Christ.

So? What's wrong with that? Your service to humankind may as well be a service to Christ.

And you are the one to decide what server the Christ.

>Your service to humankind may as well be a service to Christ.

You cannot say this and believe that this CoC is inclusive then.

I suppose it isn't inclusive to the spiteful, but oh well.

Why? Can you give an example of someone that would be excluded?

In other words, hot air.

Something written, without the explicit goal of being enforced, or expected, whatsoever.

He could have equally written: "We expect those participating in the SQLite project to murder at least three people by Sunday - but if you don't do it, it is fine too"

> disagree with specific details

Ah yes, "is there a god or not" is a specific detail, especially when it's in the context of a whole series of religiously motivated directives. /s

I hardly think that a repudiation of a set of CoC terms that I find directly exclusionary to me counts as warranting "calm down". I won't, thanks!

That's as much inclusiveness as "stop hitting yourself" is your friend's good advice.

If the CoC started with "First of all, purge any God from your heart" you wouldn't have thought twice about condemning it.

But no, the atheists should just suck it up.

Leftist Atheist here... I have no problem with this Code of Conduct. This isn't like "In god we trust" on our currency or the 10 Commandments in our courthouses. I could contribute to this project with a clear conscience because a lot of what I believe is very much in line with Christ's (if he even actually existed) actual teachings. Take care of the poor. Don't judge people who have differing lifestyles than you do. Love your neighbor. Do unto others. Etc.

I think the Golden Rule is a wonderful Code of Conduct and it's how I try to live my life. If only more people followed that rule.

Sure, I follow the categorical imperative myself.

The author had a chance to make his CoC the golden rule. But instead he made a deeply religious statement. He has full right to do what he wants, but to also claim that this is somehow inclusive because you can close your eyes to things incompatible with you is nonsense, sorry.

All religions teach largely the same good things, but you generally won't see their devotees agreeing to any document that proclaims their love for a different God.

And yet atheists are expected to swallow that. No thanks.

Swallow how though? Feel dirty when submitting a patch? I really don't understand the west's fascination with these codes and statements. Why not just do your work and avoid drama?

By standing up for/against things like CoC as opposed to actual incidents, nothing is really achieved except - I believe the term is bike shedding?

Open source exists so that everyone can contribute their talents to something that benefits everybody. If Joseph Stalin or bin Laden wrote a great patch, I'd want it. We'd all be better for it. We can fight his ideas in a different arena. It doesn't have to be the SQLite mailing list. It is not a sensible place to have these other types of ideological battles.

Here in the third world life is hard. Business ethics are non existent, workplaces are dominated by obsession with job security. If you have to make a life for yourself, you have to do your work. I find perhaps the greatest "white privilege" as it seems to be called in the west, is having the luxury of debating CoCs instead of supporting yourself and your family.

> I really don't understand the west's fascination with these codes and statements. Why not just do your work and avoid drama?

And you will never understand it if you look at "the west" as a single organism. Its millions of people with different opinions. They don't have to be consistent with each other.

CoCs exist to promote desired (usually understood as "professional") communication and collaboration standards in open source projects. People who want to bring their political or religious agenda into those CoCs are indeed largely undesired even in "the west", that's why this particular CoC riled up so much attention.

> Why not just do your work and avoid drama?

I'd love that, and I'm doing that. But I'm not a "turn the other cheek" kind of person, and I'll call out bullshit when I see it. This here is bullshit.

> If Joseph Stalin or bin Laden wrote a great patch, I'd want it. We'd all be better for it.

That theoretical programmer-Bin-Laden would never contribute a patch to a project with SQLite's new CoC because it is incompatible with his faith. You said we would be better off if he did, so by your own logic such a religious CoC is detrimental to us, which is why it is a problem.

> It doesn't have to be the SQLite mailing list. It is not a sensible place to have these other types of ideological battles.

Indeed, it is not a sensible place because SQLite itself is not a sensible place for religion. But its author made it a place for religion, with very predictable consequences.

> Here in the third world life is hard.

> I find perhaps the greatest "white privilege" [...], is having the luxury of debating CoCs instead of supporting yourself and your family.

That's perhaps a bit of an overstatement, and definitely a false dichotomy. Moreover, here you are enjoying the same white privilege in the third world. A bit hypocritical to accuse others of something you yourself are engaging in, don't you think?

> And you will never understand it if you look at "the west" as a single organism. Its millions of people with different opinions. They don't have to be consistent with each other.

It isn't a single organism, this attitude is a very popular one in the west, that's all.

> That theoretical programmer-Bin-Laden would never contribute a patch to a project with SQLite's new CoC because it is incompatible with his faith. You said we would be better off if he did, so by your own logic such a religious CoC is detrimental to us, which is why it is a problem.

Is why I had Stalin in there too. I guess I can add David Duke as well, I'll add as many examples as required for the point to be made, which you have avoided.

> Indeed, it is not a sensible place because SQLite itself is not a sensible place for religion. But its author made it a place for religion, with very predictable consequences.

Many of these sacred cows like diversity, tolerance, political correctness, etc. are all religious ideas. By using religion, the author makes an excellent point, one that is sadly lost on many though.

As for me, I am stating my apathy towards CoCs and the communities behind whichever open source project I need, so no, I am not debating CoCs. Like I said, I would gladly use Joseph Stalin's library for my projects.

I don't know why you picked Stalin. He wasn't exactly tolerant of religion, and would never agree to auch a CoC.


David Duke on the other hand would happily contribute to this project. He would never contribute to a project that had a muslim CoC though.

...You demonstrated yet again that religious CoC are not inclusive, which is my point. I feel like you're just trolling at this point.

Anyone familiar with Christian tradition will understand the reference to the Gospel: Jesus says that "love God" and "love your neighbour" (# 2 on the list) are the chief commandments and equally important. That's fine. Even if atheists think nothing of God anyone can think the best of the next man.

But how am I to understand the requirement in the Ada Initiative-derived FreeBSD code of conduct? In all seriousness, it demands that contributors do not selectively quote from private communication to give a false impression! Is there a special spirituality behind it, a context that I'm not aware of, or are they just stating the obvious? And who needs to be told the rudiments of human interaction in this form? Best, let's stay away from this morass. If the FreeBSD crowd needs to be told that to function, that's a bad sign.

> I'm an atheist

Don't worry! You can still use SQLite as God is infinite in his grace.

From the preface:

"The entire rule is good and wholesome, and yet we make no enforcement of the more introspective aspects."

So your issue isn't with the Code of Conduct, its with the people badgering them to implement one.

The maintainers (and only contributors) implemented a Code of Conduct in line with their community.

You wanna know how to tell if someone is an atheist?

> I'm an atheist

Oh wait, it doesn't matter -- they'll be sure to tell you.

When it's in relation to a post asking, "who's really excluded", I think it's appropriate.

No one is excluded.

I'm pretty sure, if you are offended by the word God, you can substitute another word, such as "Ayn Rand" or "the human intellect". Nobodys insisting that you have to do...anything really.

I am not offended by someone's personally held religious beliefs. I am, however, deliberately excluded if participating means adhering to a code of conduct that targets my beliefs.

Read the CoC more carefully. Adherence is not mandatory.

A general problem with this genre of claims is that they're pure confirmation bias: you don't notice the people who don't tell you, because they don't tell you.

I'm pretty sure they were just trying to be funny.

Ugh, wall of text. Can I get a tl;dr?

>> 38. Be not lazy.

No heresy

Fear hell and pray lots because you suck but God is cool.

tl;dr is "Do not do to another what you would not have done to yourself.".

"Don't be a dick", in modern parlance.

Hail Satan!

Please don't do this here.

USA != Rest of the World. Most problems are not issues, only for US devs as tech tend to be very US centric.

I'm all for being civil online, but against everyone behaving defined by a template.

People being far too literal here about the "Love the Lord God". Your God is whatever you worship, and yes even the Atheist worships something. The commandment is two parts: (a) Jehovah (The Lord) should be your God and (b) your God should be the priority in your life. If you're Atheist or another faith then replace A by identifying "your God" and make it your priority. Live with purpose!

> yes even the Atheist worships something

Actually, no. It's the absence of it. It's like saying not smoking is a habit. It makes no sense.

> Your God is whatever you worship, and yes even the Atheist worships something.

You're just making up your own meanings for words.

Yes, it can be said that a person can worship god or worship a person. But they're different concepts, and because the text is so specific about using the term "God", capital G, it's a reference to a specific named thing.

This isn't like a kid saying he wants KFC and you pan fry some chicken.

Stop pretending you know anything about atheists or anti-theists - the text is written by christians, and (like pretty much all monotheistic religions) they get pretty iffy when you try to dispute "one true god".

> identifying "your God" and make it your priority. Live with purpose

having purpose is almost the exact opposite of believing in a sky fairy to absolve yourself of guilt or blame.

Regardless if this is a joke or not, this is not acceptable, you can't put religious things in the code of conduct. Even if it is a joke, it is still awful and I wish that it gets removed quickly.

> you can't put religious things in the code of conduct.

Why not? Isn't the whole point of a code-of-conduct to describe the ethical values of a community? And isn't all ethics a kind of religion, even if it does not always make explicit mention of deity? From that point of view, every code-of-conduct is a credo, by definition.

Suppose I were to go in and edit St. Benedict's rules to omit all reference to "God" and "Christ", leaving behind such things as "do not steal", "do not nurse a grudge", "do not return evil for evil", and so forth. Would the document be acceptable to you then? If not, then what exactly are the ground rules for codes of conduct? And who makes those rules? Is there a code-of-conduct for codes of conduct?

If you answer "Yes" to the previous, then are you suggesting that you and/or I are somehow wiser than Benedict of Nursia, such that we are able to edit and improve upon his work?

well yes you could if you put it like that, my main point is that in that case you would have to make sure the community as a whole (all the main devs) share that point of view.

Not OP, but 1500 years of hindsight can give knowledge that could make up for any deficiency in wisdom. Furthermore the rules were written for those who were already professing belief in the christian deity.

Which code of conduct was that rule in? :)

The one about not being a dick to other people.

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