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The Next Generation of Open Source Contributors (are not on IRC) [V2]

The Next Generation of Open Source Contributors (are not on IRC) [V2]

There is an entirely new generation of contributors, and they're not joining IRC. Why is that? And where are they going? And what should I do about it?

Here's some data, some insight into a different open source path, and some strong opinions on how to invite the next generation to your space.

Matthew (Brender) Broberg

September 10, 2020
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  1. The next
    generation of
    contributors
    is not on IRC.
    https://speakerdeck.com/mbbroberg
    Matt Broberg
    @mbbroberg

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  2. Hi, I’m Matt
    Technical Editor for Opensource.com
    at Red Hat
    Member of OSI, PSF
    Contributor to Kubernetes, CHAOSS
    Graduate of OSI-approved Brandeis
    course on the Business of Open Source
    @mbbroberg

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  3. @mbbroberg
    Where were you
    When you first chat with
    an open source community?

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  4. < empty space >
    < empty space >
    < empty space >
    < empty space >
    @mbbroberg
    IRC
    (circa 1990)

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  5. Yahoo
    (18 million in 2005)
    < empty space >
    @mbbroberg
    MSN Messenger
    (115 million in 2004)
    IRC
    (240k in 2005)
    ICQ
    (20 million in 2004)

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  6. < empty space >
    @mbbroberg
    IRC
    ICQ
    MSN
    Yahoo
    < empty space >
    < empty space >

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  7. Slack
    (44 million)
    Element (Riot.im)
    (18 million)
    @mbbroberg
    IRC
    Gitter
    (100k)

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  8. Telegram
    (400 million)
    Twitter
    (326 million)
    Reddit
    (430 million)
    Slack
    (44m)
    G
    Discord
    (100 million)
    GitHub
    (44m)
    @mbbroberg
    Element
    (18m)
    irc

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  9. *
    Twitter
    (126 million)
    Slack
    (12m)
    Telegram
    (200 million)
    Goo
    g
    Discord
    (250 million)
    GitHub
    (40 m)
    @mbbroberg
    MSFT
    (13m)
    Riot
    (13m)
    Facebook / WhatsApp
    (2.6 billion)

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  10. @mbbroberg
    Where were you
    When you first chat with
    an open source community?

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  11. My impression
    You
    @mbbroberg

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  12. My impression
    You Me
    @mbbroberg

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  13. My impression
    You
    1) Seasoned open source participant
    2) Can recite the OSD from heart
    3) Contributed before git was cool
    4) Are still active on IRC
    5) Care about this community
    GitHub generation of open source
    Recently learned FSF & OSI are different
    See git as the lingua franca of tech
    Just joined IRC via Element
    Care about this community
    Me
    @mbbroberg

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  14. New users and IRC
    What’s with the wizard-like syntax?
    Where is my chat history?
    Why does NAMESERV hate me?
    What clients consistently work?
    Why can’t I @ anyone?
    @mbbroberg

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  15. The bar is higher than ever
    Modern sign up experience
    Mobile access by default
    In-app onboarding and guide
    Advanced moderation options
    Shared discussion history
    Multi-media support
    Notifications options
    IRC | Slack | Element (Riot.im)
    @mbbroberg

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  16. IRC continues to shrink
    from +400,000 in 2004
    to < 100,000 in 2020
    At a time when open
    source is more popular
    than ever

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  17. But IRC has principles!
    Point
    License is (at least) open source
    Decentralized (Federated)
    End-to-end encryption

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  18. But IRC has principles!
    Point
    License is (at least) open source
    Decentralized (Federated)
    End-to-end encryption

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  19. The bar is higher than ever
    Modern sign up experience
    Mobile access by default
    In-app onboarding and guide
    Advanced moderation options
    Shared discussion history
    Multi-media support
    Notifications options
    IRC | Rocket | Element (Riot.im)
    @mbbroberg

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  20. IRC is not the
    right tool
    @mbbroberg

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  21. Choosing community channels
    @mbbroberg

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  22. Sync
    For casual, high throughput discussion
    Async
    For a definitive, recorded answer
    News
    To stay informed and empowered
    F2F
    To build a formidable bond
    @mbbroberg

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  23. Sync
    For casual, high throughput discussion
    Async
    For a definitive, recorded answer
    News
    To stay informed and empowered
    F2F
    To build a formidable bond
    @mbbroberg

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  24. Async
    Sync
    F2F News
    User groups &
    Conferences
    @mbbroberg

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  25. Don’t default to synchronous
    Synchronous chat is rarely the right
    place for your community (at first)
    @mbbroberg

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  26. Don’t default to synchronous
    1. Requires always-on participation
    2. Difficult to follow multiple discussions
    3. Sets expectation of immediacy in response
    4. Divides participation by time zone
    5. No continuation of knowledge
    @mbbroberg

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  27. Don’t default to synchronous
    If synchronous is the right place for
    your community...
    @mbbroberg

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  28. Advanced Sync Setup
    @mbbroberg
    #where-you-prefer-to-be

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  29. Advanced Sync Setup
    @mbbroberg
    Community
    #contributors
    #where-you-prefer-to-be
    Bridges
    (Element)
    #maintainers

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  30. Advanced Sync Setup
    @mbbroberg
    Community
    #contributors
    #where-you-prefer-to-be
    #announcements (rename #general)
    #contributors
    #maintainers
    Bridges
    (Element)
    #maintainers
    #announcements
    Bots
    #social

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  31. Advanced Sync Setup
    @mbbroberg
    Community
    #contributors
    #where-you-prefer-to-be
    #announcements (rename #general)
    #contributors
    #maintainers
    Bridges
    (Element)
    #maintainers
    #announcements
    Bots
    #social
    Be where future
    contributors are

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  32. Because community is not always open
    ● Proprietary hardware community
    ● Proprietary virtualization community
    ● Joining a proprietary code sharing site
    ● Open source on a proprietary OS
    ● Open core startups
    ● Growing communities on GitHub
    ● Open source communities
    ● Opensource.com
    ● A maturing obsession with licenses
    ● Maintainer and contributor
    @mbbroberg

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  33. Communication
    channels matter
    They imply who is welcome and who
    needs to “try harder” to be welcome.
    @mbbroberg

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  34. Advanced Sync Setup
    @mbbroberg
    Community
    #contributors
    #where-you-prefer-to-be
    #announcements (rename #general)
    #contributors
    #maintainers
    Bridges
    (Element)
    #maintainers
    #announcements
    Bots
    (Slack)
    #social
    Be multichannel

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  35. Be inclusive first,
    educate on open values
    along the way
    @mbbroberg

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  36. Don’t love these types of problems?
    Recruit contributors that do.
    @mbbroberg

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  37. All communities that
    contribute to open source are
    open source communities
    @mbbroberg

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  38. Thank you
    And thanks:
    ◂ To Open Source Initiative! This is such an honor.
    ◂ To the Mozilla team for inspiring research on this topic.
    ◂ To the Opensource.com team for their support. If you’re interested
    in sharing your open source story there, I’m mbbroberg online.
    ◂ Presentation template by Slidesgo, icons by Flaticon.
    @mbbroberg

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  39. 1. Daily publication with over 3 million articles read a month
    2. Publishing articles on anything with a strong open source story
    3. Staff available to coach authors on telling great stories
    4. Top articles in Linux, Python, Rust, Kubernetes, and open source news
    5. An ever-evolving community of active participants
    Interested in writing with us? Go to Opensource.com/writers
    (or at me! @mbbroberg)

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  40. * Your current users/contributors
    Potential contributors
    @mbbroberg

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  41. *
    Potential contributors
    @mbbroberg
    Maintainers
    Your current users/contributors

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  42. Async
    Sync
    F2F News
    MozFest
    @mbbroberg
    Mozilla
    The Mozilla Blog

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  43. Async
    Sync
    F2F News
    GopherCon
    & Go Meetups
    @mbbroberg
    Go
    The Go Blog

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  44. Async
    Sync
    F2F News
    KubeCon & Cloud
    Native Meetups
    @mbbroberg
    Kubernetes
    The Kubernetes Blog
    ++

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  45. Async
    Sync
    F2F News
    & Add-on events
    @mbbroberg
    Defaults
    &

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  46. Async
    Sync
    F2F News
    All Things Open &
    Fosdem
    @mbbroberg
    Open
    Defaults
    &

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  47. Async
    Sync
    F2F News
    All Things Open &
    Fosdem
    @mbbroberg
    Open
    Defaults
    &

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