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You can find someone who’ll complain about anything. You have to evaluate whether they’re actually complaining about something valid or just reacting to change.

In the example cited, notice how insubstantial the complaints are? That’s a dead giveaway for someone who is reacting rather than thinking rationally about the goals and benefits. An important distinction to remember here is that we’re talking about something which is safe, fully automatic, and easily integrated into most editors, so the effort to follow it is a few seconds the first time you set it up.

I’ve generally found three classes of reaction to standardizing formatting, linting, and similar style checks: most people just roll with it, some people work through the initial “this is different!” reaction and realize how much easier consistency makes things (it’s been months since code review wasted time on formatting!), and a much group never get over it. I’ve only seen that a couple of times in a couple of decades and those were people who were net losses overall because this was just a symptom of a larger unwillingness to work well with others. The same guys refused to test their code, committed syntax errors or failed merges, wasted time reporting problems due to incredibly hacked up local build environments, etc. The important thing to remember is that those are a vanishingly small part of the community and I would make policy around them only to the extent of figuring out how to keep them from dragging your project down.




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