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LKML: Linus Torvalds: Linux 4.19-rc4 released, an apology, and a maintainership note

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The technology industry has an unusual amount of overly aggressive communication and criticism. Flame wars and such got their start somewhere. Linus Torvald’s, the creator of Linux and Git, two of the most important software products of our era is legend for being a complete jerk to people. This about face and apology is significant.

This week people in our community confronted me about my lifetime of not understanding emotions. My flippant attacks in emails have been both unprofessional and uncalled for. Especially at times when I made it personal. In my quest for a better patch, this made sense to me. I know now this was not OK and I am truly sorry.

This is a really big deal as Linus is a role-model for many technologists. If he thinks it is appropriate to tear people apart over their code, maybe that would be a cool thing to do in a code review at the office! Hell no.

I was also pleased to see this commit to adopt a proper Code of Conduct for Linux Kernel development. To give a sense of how deep Linus’ views affect the Linux Kernel team before this Code of Conduct they had a Code of Conflict!

The Code of Conflict is not achieving its implicit goal of fostering civility and the spirit of be excellent to each other’.

Glad to see these changes coming. 👏

Posted on September 17, 2018

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