I won’t rehash the details of the recent “EULA Incident”. You can read about it for yourselves in the newsgroups or on various blogs and comments.
I want to talk, instead, about the reaction, response, and behavior of some of the community to the event.
First, I’m well aware that because on the internet no one knows you are a dog, people feel free to behave in ways they never would in person. I have been as guilty as anyone of this over the years, though I daresay that I like to think that I’ve become self-aware about the issue and been a much better online citizen over the past few years. However, being on the internet isn’t an excuse to be rude, offensive, and, well, a jerk.
And frankly, the response to the EULA issue by the Delphi community was shameful. Seriously. It wasn’t a rational discussion, it was a witch hunt. I’ll not weigh in on the issue at all other than to say that I was glad to see Embarcadero respond to the uproar by deciding not to make the change. And when I expressed that sentiment, I was pretty aggressively attacked for apparently not participating in what I called the “public flogging”. And then I was aggressively attacked for calling it a public flogging.
And it was a public flogging. It couldn’t even remotely be described as a professional discussion. I understand that the proposed but never adopted change would have had a rather profound effect on many people. But even so, that is simply not an excuse for meanness and vitriol.
Why am I writing this? Well, because I consider David Intersimone one of the finest men I’ve ever known and a good friend. He is kind, gentle, smart beyond reason, and very, very dedicated to the Delphi community. And for the Delphi community – whom he has served so well for many, many years – to treat him so badly was, well, very, very painful for me to see. DavidI didn’t even remotely deserve the treatment he got, and those of you who were so unpleasant to him should be ashamed of yourselves.
They say “All’s well that ends well”. The Delphi XE3 EULA controversy apparently is ending well.
But the Delphi community’s treatment of its longest and dearest friend did not end well at all.