Most of my today’s musing was initially written as a reply on Gitter about some small non-technical issue, but after spending more time thinking about it, I thought that discourse would be more appropriate.
The issue is that a user felt that addressing inclusive language mistakes (using “guys” instead of “folks”) was beyond the scope of a channel that should be about programming.
First, I’d like to point out that nobody here was rebutted in any way because of the improper use of “guys”, it was a gentle reminder/hint, and it didn’t get in the way of the “offender” from receiving a technical reply. As a non-native English speaker (like many people in here, I’d wager), I think it’s very easy for a foreigner to learn about it, even for the ones struggling with English; it’s really just one word. And I’ve never seen people trying to correct more complex errors like I do sometimes (e.g. employing “he/him/his” by default). This feels like a proper balance is in place, IMHO.
Also, please note that the inclusive language matter is addressed in the code of conduct which is in the Gitter’s banner (as I understand, its contents might not be visible to every user, depending on how they connect to here). I can’t remember the registration process here so maybe I clicked on a checkbox saying that I agreed to abide by it, or maybe it’s considered as a tacit agreement instead, and could benefit from more visibility. Nonetheless, it exists and is integral part of the project.
I don’t want to go into a more philosophical discussion right now, but I believe there’s no absolute right or wrong in the way we think about what the essence of a project is. It just happens that Hanami is a project that encompasses more things (for lack of a better word) than others, including a community of people sharing certain values, and a willingness to promote them in the scope of the project.
Feel free to leave your thoughts here about how you perceive projects in general, Hanami in particular, and whether or not I’d make a good philosopher (don’t bother about that, actually!).