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PCLinuxOS’s militant leadership

Wednesday, 23 May 2007 linux rant

As a reviewer, I expect people to disagree with points I make. Everybody has their own opinion. But is it okay when the project leader of a maturing Linux distribution calls on his users to "hammer" a site because of its outcome?

It’s a really harsh statement but when the leader of a Linux project tells his users to hammer my site, there’s really no other description for it.

A couple of days ago I published a review on the latest version of PCLinuxOS. The first draft was, admittedly rather skewed because one feature I deemed essential was buried in the help documentation. Once I started getting feedback to the contrary, I immediately looked at things again and adjusted large portions of the review to reflect things more accurately.

I expect fans of an operating system to stand up for it — as they did. I expect some of them to be more reasonable in their responses than others and I got the whole range. What I don’t expect is the leader of the whole project saying:

I suspect this is their [Ubuntu’s] new marketing strategy. Use their Ubuntu bloggers to review and then come to the conclusion that Ubuntu/Kubuntu is the better choice and hope the new sites will pick it up like they do with all their 100’s of howtos that get sent around everyday.

I applaud the PCLinuxOS users who stood up for us. If they want to go this route then lets hammer their blogs with the truth and force them to keep removing our posts until they cry. We aren’t gonna roll over like a whipped dog so you want some bring it on but prepare to get a lot of mud on your distro cuz we can sling it just as good as you.

This thread was moved away or deleted so I can’t link you to it but luckily I tend to leave dozens of tabs open and I still have the text. I’m probably making that all up aren’t I? Surely no leader would say that… Well here’s screenshot and here’s the whole page (1.4megs).

Texstar's reply

I get it. You didn’t like the tone of the review. You wanted “yeah it’s all great” but in terms of feedback what use is that? I mention Ubuntu. How is saying that another distro has certain better aspects a bad thing?

When the strapline of the PCLOS is “Radically Simple” and I see something in another distro that is more simple or I see things in PCLOS that just aren’t simple or logical, I’m going to call you out on it.

As for suggesting that fans should “hammer their blogs with the truth and force them to keep removing our posts until they cry” because I’m some sort of Ubuntu house organ, grow up.

Kickbanned from #pclinuxos

Kickbanned! What for? Just the review. I had a few great chats with people there but I’m almost tempted to edit this sort of official behaviour back into the review. Radically simple community leadership.

I should state that I don’t mind fans of a system attacking me. They’re just expressing their opinion over something they feel and that’s groovy because that’s just what I do. However, leaders of a project should be taking notes when somebody says they don’t like a certain aspect, not joining in with the mob.