[cfe-dev] [llvm-dev] RFC: Moving toward Discord and Discourse for LLVM's discussions

Ryan Taylor via cfe-dev cfe-dev at lists.llvm.org
Mon Nov 18 05:40:33 PST 2019

Are the barriers to newcomers really the tools and not just the community's
general attitude toward newcomers?

On Mon, Nov 18, 2019, 8:11 AM Nico Weber via llvm-dev <
llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org> wrote:

> FWIW I'm a fan of using open-source stuff for open-source projects.
> Discourse looks open source, but Discord doesn't as far as I can tell (?).
> On Mon, Nov 18, 2019 at 3:15 AM Chandler Carruth via cfe-dev <
> cfe-dev at lists.llvm.org> wrote:
>> Hello folks,
>> I sent the message quoted below to llvm-dev@ just now, but it applies to
>> the whole community so sending an FYI here. Probably best to follow up w/
>> discussion on llvm-dev.
>> The archive link for reference is here:
>> http://lists.llvm.org/pipermail/llvm-dev/2019-November/136880.html
>> On Sun, Nov 17, 2019 at 11:48 PM Chandler Carruth <chandlerc at gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>>> Hello everyone,
>>> *Short version:*I've set up an LLVM Discord server for real time chat
>>> (similar to IRC) and an LLVM Discourse server for forums (similar to email
>>> lists):
>>> https://discord.gg/xS7Z362
>>> https://llvm.discourse.group/
>>> Please join and use these new services. They are only partially set up
>>> and still very new, so don't hesitate to improve them and/or reach out to
>>> this thread with any issues you see or things you want to fix. Also, both
>>> services have dedicated feedback channels.
>>> Do feel free to use Discourse for technical discussions, although try
>>> not to create duplicate discussions (any more than you would between the
>>> lists and Bugzilla) and make sure the people you're having the discussion
>>> with are fine using Discourse instead of the email list. In case Discourse
>>> doesn't work out, we'll collect and archive everything so it isn't lost.
>>> *Longer version & more details:*During this year's Women in Compilers
>>> and Tools meeting, folks expressed very clearly that our communication
>>> systems cause a non-trivial amount of friction for new people trying to
>>> find out about, learn, or contribute to LLVM. Both IRC for chatting and
>>> mailing lists for longer-form discussions are unfamiliar, difficult, and
>>> often intimidating for newcomers. While I have long been a fan and
>>> resistant to change in these areas, the feedback from folks at WiCT was
>>> compelling and important for us as a community to address. Even if it means
>>> I have to let go of my precious IRC. ;]
>>> We talked to a bunch of people and looked at the options out there and
>>> the most promising ones were Discord for chatting and Discourse for
>>> longer-form discussions. Meike and I have set up both an initial Discord
>>> and Discourse server. You can find them here:
>>> https://discord.gg/xS7Z362
>>> https://llvm.discourse.group/
>>> There is still a lot of work to be done. Notably, it'd be great for
>>> folks to clean up and improve the summaries for each of the groups in
>>> Discourse, and I'll be asking various people to help moderate on both
>>> Discourse and Discord. If you'd like to help out with a specific set of
>>> improvements to these, don't hesitate to reach out to me or Meike and we
>>> can get you set up. Some specific things we're already working on:
>>>    - Getting Discord verified with a nice URL.
>>>    - Archives of mailing lists on Discourse so you can search in one
>>>    place, etc.
>>>       - See the plan here:
>>>       https://llvm.discourse.group/t/mirroring-and-archiving-llvm-mailing-lists-on-discourse/61
>>>    - Moving Discourse to forums.llvm.org.
>>>    - Documenting the best way to move to Discourse while preserving a
>>>    similarly email-focused workflow.
>>> We're just adding these for now, but I'd like people to seriously try
>>> using them. While IRC has served us fairly well, I think it is one of the
>>> bigger barriers to entry. Our email lists are more effective, but also have
>>> had serious infrastructure challenges over the years: a constant flow of
>>> spam, bouncing for several major email providers, etc. Discourse has very
>>> powerful email-based workflows available and I think we should seriously
>>> consider moving to Discourse long-term instead of the email lists.
>>> I also want to say thanks to all the folks at the WiCT workshop for
>>> giving me and others feedback. I was pretty set in my ways around these
>>> kind of things, but hearing the kinds of challenges this has posed to
>>> people less established in the community was a real eye opener. It takes a
>>> lot to speak up like this, and I really appreciate it. I hope this also
>>> helps start to address these long-standing issues. Also a huge thanks to
>>> Tanya for organizing the WICT workshop and Meike for helping drive this
>>> message home to me and doing a bunch of the work getting these things set
>>> up. I wouldn't have been able to do it without her help, especially around
>>> Discord bots.
>>> -Chandler
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