Recently, there was a lot of discussion of the `funding` package, which shows ads during npm install. I found this recap very insightful and helpful:

Linode, one of the sponsors, pulled out with a "we'll be more careful with experiments in the future".

This is a result of online discussion being rant-based instead of respectful. A "Whelp, this experiment didn't work out" would've been *so much better* than "we'll be more careful about experimenting in the future".

Experiments are important. They need respectful discourse.


I wish linode offered to support open source, like they said they did, even after the experiment by making donations and not expecting ads/developer mental space in return.
I guess they made their intentions quite clear by their actions; no sympathy might be owed to linode.
#funding didn’t have to go, the ads did.

@prasoon Wouldn't telling them be more useful compared with telling me?

Certainly. I was just trying to participate in the discussion. Sorry to bother you.

@juh Sorry, I must be missing something: What are you trying to tell me?

@rixx It seemed a bit condescending to me, to be honest. There was quite a "If you are not a contributor, you get to sit in your corner and shut up" vibe to parts of it.

I'm certainly going to avoid software that throws ads at me. Always have, always will. No matter if it's closed or open source. So yes, I'll go sit in my corner, *with somebody else's code*.

@BioHackerBI Alright then, fair enough.

I notice that you are very much against one proposed experiment, not even a supposed solution. I'd be curious what your solution would be instead. Or maybe it's fine that open source maintainers make no income while large companies and startups do, off their work? In that case, rock on – I'll be sitting in the other corner on that one.

@rixx It sucks, I know.

My two greatest problems with this experiment are simple: A log is for relevant data, not for ads, and the installerearned about the ad when they saw it.

Label the thing "Contains ads" and have it pop up a separate terminal with the ad after install, and I'm orders of magnitude more okay with it.

@rixx @BioHackerBI "and the installer learned"

I cannot into typing today.

@BioHackerBI Ah, right. As long as nobody has to see the ads, it's fine? This is explicitly addressed in the article.

"Pop up a new terminal" is utterly impractical. I think as long as the ads appear in stdout and not in stderr (which really needs to go to logs, everything else is your tooling choice), "a log is for data" is a copout.

@rixx Then consider me copping out. I like my logs full of important, maybe even critical information, not "Please support the devs".

I'll happily kick a few bucks down the road, I've done so before and will again, but logs are a no go.

@BioHackerBI I guess "starve and hope for friendly individuals" it is.

@rixx That actually reminds me: I use more than enough, and I don't remember giving you guys anything. You got a donation bank account/patreon/paypal/crypto wallet/coordinates of your carrier pigeon loft? ;)

And nobody is forcing unpaid FOSS devs to dev. Shit, I don't get paid for doing various public benefit things*, but I'm not stopping.

*technically, I'm allowed free entry at the local Freibad, because firefighting.

@rixx I am very depressed that obviously nobody knows about the most famous sentence of Adorno: "Es gibt kein richtiges Leben im falschen". (There is no right life in the wrong one.)

There is no right open source in capitalism.

@juh Oh how convenient! Just by quoting a quip, and stating that there is no perfect solution, we can all stop looking for solutions that at least help a bit!

@rixx It was not meant as a quip, sorry. If we drop back behind some crucial theoretical insights of critical thinkers of the past we won't help open source developers or, for example, people running a Mastodon instance for others. I found some hints to this in the text, you shared. If we want to change the situation there is a lot of collective work ahead of us.

re: recap of the "funding" experiment 

@garbados I don't see how unionizing would solve this particular problems. Other problems in tech and software development? Absolutely, sign me up. Open source funding for intermediary libraries? … Could you expand on that, please?

re: why should devs unionize? 

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@rixx Interesting to see Mastodon on one of the graphs...

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