[llvm-dev] [cfe-dev] Mailing List Status Update

Johannes Doerfert via llvm-dev llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org
Tue Jun 29 11:42:57 PDT 2021

On 6/29/21 11:47 AM, Mehdi AMINI via cfe-dev wrote:
> On Tue, Jun 29, 2021 at 2:55 AM Serge Guelton via cfe-dev <
> cfe-dev at lists.llvm.org> wrote:
>> On Thu, Jun 24, 2021 at 1:19 PM Aaron Ballman via cfe-dev <
>> cfe-dev at lists.llvm.org> wrote:
>>> I think this could be a demonstration that the culture of the
>>> community is being impacted by the fracturing. When people come to
>>> IRC, moderators and other users will point out that discord and the
>>> mailing lists are places where someone can also attempt to get an
>>> answer if they don't find it on IRC. (Telling users to ask on the
>>> mailing lists if no one has an answer on IRC has been the status quo
>>> since I joined the community, so this isn't a new practice.) Users
>>> respond by saying thanks and often following that advice. It sounds
>>> like on Discord, users who don't find an answer to their question
>>> maybe aren't being told about the other options? If so, this is a
>>> demonstration of *why* I'm concerned about further fracturing the
>>> community.
>> I can only second Aaron's opinion. Discord has been a sad move in terms of
>> community fracturing and I'd rather not have that happen again.
> To me the fracturing on the IRC side is that we didn't just close the IRC
> channel and move over the IRC. The fragmentation came from the non-decision
> that led to Discord and IRC co-existing: I don't see immediately how
> migrating the llvm-dev@ to the Discourse forums would repeat this.

I tried Discourse*, it doesn't work for me. I guess that just means
I'm out of luck due to the non-decision to open up a Discourse if this
means we close IRC eventually.

* Whenever I checked a lot of questions (in channels) I usually would
reply to on IRC or the mailing lists were just unanswered. To me
it seemed there were N channels opened without having a community that is
responsive in those areas (similarly inĀ  Discord though). Certainly a
subjective observation so I don't want to make the impression that is a
fact or generally true, just what I felt when I used the two "new" systems.

~ Johannes

P.S. Apologies for continuing this topic change wrt. Discourse.

> On the topic of "fragmentation", I would argue that is to me a great
> advantage to these new tools instead: the mailing list aren't as easily
> discoverable, and they live on their own isolated "islands" (Just like it
> would be on IRC if we had all these different IRC channels).
> Discord/Discourse moves the paradigm from separate IRC channels/mailing
> lists to a single "instance" where topics fit into categories: this
> provides a unified view of all the llvm-project. At the moment any time
> there is a mailing-list cross-post, I get bounced because I'm not
> subscribed to OpenMP, LLDB, ... mailing-lists. Similarly, poking at what's
> happening in one of these other mailing lists requires navigating the
> online list archive, which has quite an impedance mismatch with the
> expected way of interacting with the list (email...). I also can't answer a
> topic on the CFE mailing-list that I would see in the archive if I wasn't
> subscribed to the list in the first place, so in practice I'm unlikely to
> participate in these projects occasionally. You would think that email
> makes it easy to CC me on an existing thread, but not being subscribed, I
> still can't participate in the mailing-list thread.
> This is all another angle on the existing "fragmentation" in the community
> created by the tools (IRC and mailing-list) that aren't designed for
> managing what we have: a community composed of many subcommunities.
> Finally, one last advantage of Discourse/Discord over mailing-lists/IRC is
> the "agility" through evolution: it is trivial to add or reorganize
> categories in face of a change in the community or sub-projects. Any new
> category is directly integrated in the platform and immediately visible (I
> discovered new channels on Discord over the last year as they got added, I
> could easily skim through them and participate as needed, get pinged on
> some specific topics, etc.). theu are suitable to manage the entire
> llvm-project community instead of the existing silos.
> Even the fact that llvm-dev@ is the place to organize the entire project is
> still a historical artifact that mixes the llvm core development with the
> plurality of the projects.
> Best,
> _______________________________________________
> cfe-dev mailing list
> cfe-dev at lists.llvm.org
> https://lists.llvm.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/cfe-dev

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