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A Community of Rockstars: comparing Rails and Apache communities. (cubiclemuses.com)
8 points by jaaron 3011 days ago | hide | past | web | 6 comments | favorite

I am not a fan of the superstar mentality either, but this story just seems like a bash-fest. Rails core does this, and rails core does that. It doesn't offer anything to really change the direction, or even food for thought.

If Merb taught us anything, it is showed us that dedicated people can change the direction of this community. I worry less about the core team getting hit by a bus, and more about stability of the framework and for large systems built upon it.

I think if we focused on those issues we may care less about what is happening at the top, for example extending maintenance cycles, stabilizing important plugins, and giving older releases as much face time as the bleeding edge. The edge is critical to expansion of the technology, but the platform will be taken more seriously if it behaves like someone who has a financial stake in its products.


I'm trying to point out that the real issue here isn't sexism, but excessive individualism. This goes beyond the simple philosophy of working on what interests you to an actual disdain to working with or for others. Rails core doesn't care that you need maintenance cycles, stabilizing important plugins, or giving older releases face time.

That mentality will indeed impact these technical points, which is exactly why projects like the ASF repeat ad nauseam the mantras of consensus, respect and community before code.

Another name to this excessive individualism is: 'narcisism'. There are people who defend that way of community organizing: http://perlmonks.org/?node_id=669062 (this is an example from the Perl community - but I hope it will not be taken against Perl - as a part of that community I just know more about it's dark corners - also note how many people in that thread disagreed).

The "rockstar coder" nonsense needs to stop. If someone does excellent work, then say that. If they're an ass, then say that. If they're an arrogant ass who does excellent work, then say that - don't call them a "rockstar," thereby glamorizing their condescension just because they're good at their job.


Matt Aimonetti, the author of the presentation, is not an Apache CouchDB committer. He is a Merb and Rails developer:

- http://merbist.com/about/

This controversy is very much about the Rails community. It's the Rails community leaders who are defending Matt. If this had been an Apache committer you would have seen a clear and swift apology from the ASF and likely a huge mailing list thread about how this behavior isn't helpful.

My fault I only read the presentation and from all the couchDB logos I mistakenly assumed it was done by a couchDB developer.

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