[kde-community] Official KDE mirror on github

Jos van den Oever jos at vandenoever.info
Tue Aug 18 07:20:27 UTC 2015

On Monday 17 August 2015 22:53:13 Valentin Rusu wrote:
> * Jos van den Oever <jos at vandenoever.info> [2015-08-17 09:51:02 +0200]:
> > On Monday 17 August 2015 09:43:04 Boudewijn Rempt wrote:
> > > People even get pissed that we're not on github, github is, after all
> > > the,
> > > Official Git Place. They don't trust a git repo that's not on github...
> > 
> > In real life, I very often have to correct people who conflate git and
> > github. Github was very successful in hijacking git. That's a big
> > achievement, but having one big player is not healthy for the ecosystem
> > and its inhabitants.
> > 
> > The network effect is the big enabler here. GitHub, just like Facebook,
> > Windows, and more recently WhatsApp, grew because people felt they could
> > not avoid it. (I left out political examples ;-)
> Just my 2cents. Github is not in the same game as Windows from a
> political standpoint. Like the other apps/systems you mentioned, Github
> shares the simplicity, the ease of use. It's very easy to have a Github
> account, then simply fork that repo if something bothers you. You fix it
> for you, then eventually make the pull request. No fancy workflows or
> overengineered processes here. That's key to public adoption. That's the
> opposite of politics ;-)

The nice features you describe are true of Git. Git is a free software 
distributed system and GitHub makes this feature available as a closed hosted 

Windows and GitHub are both closed products that cannot be changed by the 
user. The user can choose to use GitHub or not use GitHub. When many people 
use GitHub, the network effect is strong and many more people will feel forced 
to use GitHub. If KDE uses GitHub instead of its own infrastructure, KDE 
forces people into an unfree system. Windows and Facebook are the same 
problem: because so many people use it, others feel forced to join these bad 
systems. GitHub might be pretty nice now, but there is no way to be sure it 
will stay like this.

The proposal by Martin is to only mirror KDE code on GitHub. That is not 
nearly as harmful. Anyone can put KDE code on GitHub legally. So it's better 
that KDE does it themselves, but we should be clear that the code is only a 
mirror. Each respository should have a text at the top of README.md that 
explains how people can join KDE [1]. It's a bit like throwing leaflets about 
the good life into hostile territory. ;-)


[1] https://mail.kde.org/pipermail/kde-community/2015q3/001533.html

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