[mythtv-users] "get the sources and fix it yourself"

Peter Schachte schachte at csse.unimelb.edu.au
Fri Sep 28 03:50:28 UTC 2007

Bearcat M. Sandor wrote:

> My problem is that i feel i have to say to my clients "Look, please go to XYZ 
> place for help but be aware that there are assholes out there who will call 
> you stupid and tell you to RTFM, even if you have to say 'i don't remember 
> what the manual is, or "Step off. I just started using Linux yesterday. and i 
> just wanted help rather then search aimlessly through the tangle of google."

This is really an issue of sociology.  Each hacker community evolves its own
social norms and its own standards of hospitality, just like any society.  I
subscribe to mailing lists on which people will take the time to rewrite your
buggy code for you to show you how it should be done, and others where most
questions are answered curtly.  We may wish all forums could be helpful and
polite, but each evolves along its own path, and trying to change it is about as
likely to succeed as trying to change any society's culture.  This, I think, is
the unspoken point behind esr's discussion.  Someone asking for help from open
source developers really has nothing to offer in exchange for help.  In such a
situation, the best a questioner can do is try to maximise the likelihood of a
positive outcome.  And that's what esr's discussion is trying to say how to do.

Peter Schachte              The most heinous and the most cruel crimes of
schachte at cs.mu.OZ.AU        which history has record have been committed
www.cs.mu.oz.au/~schachte/  under the cover of religion or equally noble
Phone: +61 3 8344 1338      motives. -- Mahatma Gandhi

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