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BDSM and Drupal : feelings of upset within the community

BDSM and Drupal : feelings of upset within the community

Open Source : A polemic for unusual shakes the community of contributors to the Drupal CMS. The organs of governance of the project have discarded one of the main contributors of the project, blaming him for his taste for the culture Goréenne, a niche of BDSM considered contrary to the ethics of the project.

This is the kind of controversy that rule generally in all discretion, but the contributors of the Drupal CMS have apparently decided to wash their dirty linen in the family and the community following since few days now the controversy which erupted around Larry Garfield, an important contributor to the open-source project.

The novels of John Norman describe a machista society which are inspired by some followers of the bdsm practices.

The story is not very simple to summarize, and we will have to settle statements of each for the moment. Larry Garfield was an important contributor to the Drupal project and worked for more than ten years of development, through the contributions of many. But in private, Larry Garfield was a follower of the BDSM and more specifically the culture Goréene, a niche of BDSM-inspired science fiction novels written by John Norman. These novels describe a society as deeply patriarchal and women are for the most part enslaved. The followers of the philosophy Goréenne, like Larry Garfield, reproduce the patterns and the designations described in the books of John Norman, for sexual purposes.

Larry, do me wrong

As explained by Garfield in a note to the blog, his inclinations were not known in the Drupal community, but it had these on several sites and social networks closed and reserved for fetishists of all kind. A stranger fell on his account, and has undertaken to report several of his statements and posts to the governing bodies of the Drupal project. This information has apparently aroused the indignation of several members of the project, who requested that Larry Garfield be purely and simply removed from the project and future conventions Drupal, or he was supposed to give a technical conference.

In his post, Larry Garfield protested against this measure as it equates to harassment on the part of the community. He reminds us that there is no direct complaint against her behavior, and that he takes care not to talk about her lifestyle and sexual preference within the community. Larry Garfield explains in detail his points of view and recalls its commitment to the inclusive ethos that is carried by the Drupal project. He explains to be reduced to expose themselves in order to put an end to the rumors that have been flying for several weeks around its case.

In the Face of this controversy, Dries Butayer, lead developer of the Drupal project, has also split from a blog post. He says he has thought long and hard on the attitude to adopt with regard to Larry Garfield, but also specifies that the post of the developer omits certain information brought to his knowledge, which led him to take his decision and to depart from the governance of the project. In a second article published at the end of march, the director of the association Drupal Megan Sanicki and lead developer Dries Butayer summarize the case and explain in detail their reasoning in this case.

Inclusive, but don’t push it ?

Drupal is a free CMS the most popular today.

Following this case, more than 80 contributors to the project were published at the address Drupalconfessions.org a forum inviting Dries Butayer to go back on its decision. According to them, Larry Garfield has nothing concrete to blame, and has not broken the rules laid down by the code of conduct of Drupal. According to the signatories of this call, these are his opinions that today are worth to be kept away. “In reaching this decision, a member of the Drupal community went to retrieve information on spaces having nothing to do with the community, exfiltrant the passage of information from private sites (which violates their TOS.) With the endorsement of the Community Working Group, several members have then had to resort to campaigns of harassment, defamation and rumor to remove Larry from the Drupal community for facts having nothing to do with it, ” summarize the authors of the tribune.

The situation poses a particularly interesting question for the development of open source projects such as Drupal. For the governance of the project, it is vital to maintain an inclusive and welcoming community to allow the renewal of the contributors and volunteers involved in the project. The image of this community is therefore a precious asset that must be preserved.

But at the same time, this setting aside of a significant contributor on the grounds that his opinions on relationships between men and women offended some members don’t stick really with the commitment of Drupal not to discriminate. On his blog Larry Garfield made several times the parallel between his views and several religions, recalling that it would be unthinkable to remove a contributor for their religious beliefs. Dries Butayer, however, reminds that some of the elements that led to his decision have not been revealed publicly. So we can wish good luck to the Drupal community to reach a solution satisfactory to everyone.

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