Please post to mailing lists

Unfortunately, this quick note will most likely not reach the people it needs to, but it needs to be said in any case:

When contacting myself or other people who produce free software, please use the mailing list for the project in question unless you have a really good reason to keep the conversation private.

The reasons:

  • Other people can benefit from, and contribute to the conversation. They might also be more interested than I am in the problem at hand, or at least want to hear about how it’s resolved.

  • It gets archived, and therefore people can find it via search engines in the future. This is critical when you want to be able to point people at archives that led to decisions that affect the project.

  • It creates more sense of ‘community’. Most successful open source projects are not the fruit of only one person’s labor. Perhaps they are initially, but at a certain point, everyone is better off if a community grows up around the project, and keeping conversations public helps that process along.

Please pass this along – hopefully people will start to get the idea.

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