Leaving Github

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Yes, as the title says, I am going to leave Github.

The story started in July 2015. After I finished ECOOP, tired, I logged into github to see what’s new (during conference, I did not check it, I was busy getting from one talk to another and sleep in between). What I saw was very disgusting. Lots of sites (bitbucket, github, medium) changed their themes and icons to contain the lgbt rainbow flag.

Then I found out, US passed gay marriage in Supreme Court, and wept.

Weeping aside, I got extremely angry at github (and medium and others) that they themed my repos / articles / whatever using theirs political propaganda. If you think SCOTUS decision was right, do. But do not impose the celebration of something I see as inherent evil on my creations.

I left Medium and deleted my bitbucket account (I still have one for access to work repos, but using it only for that; I would be happy not to have one at all).

I wanted to leave Github that time, too. But Github already achieved status of open-source monopoly. Yes, there are some minor players out there, but virtually anything is in Github. You want to report an issue, you must have a Github account. Not to mention, I was maintainer of one of the (medium-sized) projects there: Amber Smalltalk.

There may be other issues than mine, but for one reason or another, monopoly is not good thing. In my case, however despicable that issue may look for leftists out there, I have gone through the sensation of what monopoly is – how I am forced into two options only. Either obey the rules, even if they may be wrong, and have the access to service (and people, and community, and feedback, and visibility), or go by your conscience, but in that case you are (de facto) cut off. Call it a developer Benedict option.

I ended up having the account and hating myself.

The second act started at the end of 2015. I stumbled upon Milo Yiannopoulos (@Nero) on Twitter. The guy is heaven-sent, as he’s one of the few who is battling seizure of the public (university campuses, open source, public policies) by the “social justice”, “intersectional feminism”, “safe spaces” and other signs of cultural surrender of the West. I found a lot from his tweets and articles in Breitbart News, along with ones of his colleagues.

Thing began to get interesting. First, Twitter though police removed Milo’s “verified” check mark. Read more here: http://www.breitbart.com/tech/2016/01/09/twitter-declares-war-on-conservative-media-unverifies-breitbart-tech-editor/.

Then, intersectional feminist and trans person going currently by the name Coraline Ada Ehmke, continued its holy war to install Contributor Convenant, a “nice thing” on the first look, but, when analysed, in fact a clear piece of political war, on more projects, some of them being cornerstones of IT as we know it. As written in http://paul-m-jones.com/archives/6214, “Whether or not this description of open source is accurate, it is true that Ehmke thinks of open source as a political arena. As such, one must read the Contributor Covenant as a political document, with political means and political ends. Specifically, it is a tool for Social Justice.” I happened to know Elia Schito (@elia), core opalrb developer, and the “OpalGate” where Ehmke pushed hard to get this core developer banned because of his personal opinions (as a Catholic he is, understandably, not a trans-ally) and install Contributor Covenant as the thought policing law into opalrb. Elia stayed, but the document was installed.

After getting the document installed on lots of smaller projects, Ehmke tried to gain much vaster territory: now shifting from libraries and frameworks themselves to programming languages: In the beginning of 2016, the strong push started on PHP and Ruby forums to adopt Contributor Covenant as the rules for community.

Thank God, PHP refused pretty fast. Ruby was much more dramatic case (I could include the link with the issue where Contributor Covenant was tried to be snaked in, but I won't – it’s hard and depressing read. And long. Very long). After long debate, Matz told he heard both sides, he prefers much less policing piece of text, and he will decide. After some time, he decided and installed Ruby Community Conduct Guideline. The piece of text is antithesis to Contributor Covenant – no attack, no judging, no policing, no looking for an enemy to crush.

Huge win for Ruby, huge win for Open Source.

The positive cherry on top was, opalrb dissed the Contributor Covenant and adopted Ruby Community Conduct Guideline.

The third act bring the limelight back to Github. In February, Ehmke’s twitter included an announcement reading “I’m thrilled to announce that I will be joining the team at @github next month to work on community management and anti-harassment tools.” More of harrasment tools, as I see it.

I don’t want to twist my consience any more. I know I will not be able to fill issues on lots of the libraries and modules that reside on Github. That may make me less usable in the developer market.

But I want to do things which I believe are good (and hopefully, God also thinks they are good). Every big tech company (Apple, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, now Github) is trying to appease to “social justice” as much as possible. I have felt it even as a global pressure to leave this industry completely – your bases are belong to us. You join us, or leave. We kill you.

Maybe it ends up that way. Maybe not. I am presently still a software developer (I’d like to think a pretty decent one), but I conscietly decided I will not have account on Github. Because soul matters more.

Other social git cloud providers (bitbucket, gitlab, assembla) are all in the same camp. There wasn’t any public alternative. Therefore, I set up self-hosting solution on https://lolg.it/ and all my open source (and maybe commercial as well) work is there. The platform is open for other refugees, though it is not massively scaled (runs on one server at my friend’s place).

So long, and thanks for all the commits.


P.S.: Maybe someone can ask “Would you return to Github if it would change and purge social justice warriors?” For that, my long answer is: Even if that process would occur, it would take long time. As can be seen by steady decline of Twitter stock price since Jack Dorsey was reinstated as CEO and thought-policing like Milo's unverifying started, things tend to decay and rot. I firmly believe Github did a few steps (not just coopting Ehmke, Github did a few culture shifts lately, all in wrong direction) which set the direction to end up slowly in oblivion, myspace-like or twitter-like. So even if the purifying would happen, it would take too long for Github to be important any more. I firmly believe fall of Github is on the way, and we will live on post-Github world in a few years.