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Chaos follows Linux dev community’s new code of conduct

On Sunday, Linus Torvalds – the chief programmer of Linux Kernel – sent out a letter in which he apologized for his hostile behavior towards others in the community that maintains the project.

He added that he will be taking some time off:

I am going to take time off and get some assistance on how to understand people’s emotions and respond appropriately.

Torvalds is referring to what he described as “My flippant attacks in emails” which he believes were “both unprofessional and uncalled for. Especially at times when I made it personal.”

Following the letter, the Linux community announced that for the first time it will adopt a ‘Code of Conduct’ which is outlined as follows:

In the interest of fostering an open and welcoming environment, we as contributors and maintainers pledge to making participation in our project and our community a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of age, body size, disability, ethnicity, sex characteristics, gender identity and expression, level of experience, education, socio-economic status, nationality, personal appearance, race, religion, or sexual identity and orientation.

The conduct encourages positive language, being respectful to different views and accepting constructive criticism while discouraging trolling, harassment and unwanted sexual advances.  It replaced the murky and clearly ineffective ‘Code of Conflict’ which was previously in place. But now, the new guidelines have stirred up a storm of discontent within the community, which raises a few points of concern.

A lot of people in the community are angry and afraid that now the development will be ‘SJW driven’. Many comments on platforms like Twitter, GitHub, and Reddit suggest that some contributors are not happy with this development.