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On 11/21/2011 9:58 AM, Stefan Reich wrote:
You haven't even begun to understand what good really means. A place free from negativity is so, so, so much stronger and better than this place here. It makes all the difference in the world.

How can any list have valid discussion if there are rules against telling someone that their idea isn't a good one? If I've just shared my idea with the list, and someone comes in and tells me that it's a really, really bad idea, that seems like negativity to me. On a technical discussion board you need to be free to say something won't work, or that it's a bad idea.

Also, a place free from negativity would suppress negative emotions.

From the first email:
- absolutely free expression of personal emotion, no matter what kind of emotion it is.

Hmmm... So which is it? No negativity, or free expression of emotions?

I have enough experience experimenting with community building that I can tell you one thing: The urge to create a new community stems from a lack of agreement with the current community's core values and goals. Making rules about negativity and collaboration and such are a distraction from the real problem, which is that you have differing goals than the community at large. The only way to really, completely remove disagreement is to surround yourself with people who agree with you, or at least who share your overall goals.

In some situations, this can be the correct answer. If you want to create a LuaFork designed and implemented in your image, and can get people to sign on to your vision of Lua, then go for it. Be sure to enumerate your values and goals (the Lua-related ones, not the "be nice" ones) completely before you start the list, though, so that you can be sure that everyone who signs up shares your values. Otherwise you'll end up with a new group of people, each with their own set of (still contradictory) values and goals, and the only difference will be that YOU'RE the dictator.

Which, again, could be your actual goal (and it's not an unreasonable goal, though forgive me for not signing on before I see your values and goals), but don't pretend that your list will be any different in that case, aside from the specific list of core (LuaFork) values are that you're trying to uphold, and language goals you want to work toward.

A lot of value of the Lua community comes from its size and breadth of experience, in addition to its strong leadership. There are very, very few successful open source projects that are truly community-driven; a strong leader accounts for a lot. Are there things I would change, if I were a benevolent Lua dictator? Certainly. Are there dozens of other people who would jump on the bandwagon if I listed those items? Yes. Some of those features have even gotten a near consensus in Lua-L discussions, and it's only our benevolent dictators who seem to disagree, and that's tremendously frustrating. But a strong project needs to have strong leadership, and I'm willing to accept the downsides of not getting everything I want in exchange for strong and overall good leaders. The alternative is to use a fork that isn't as well tested and documented, which doesn't fit MY needs as well.

But your needs are yours to decide. Who knows, maybe you'll hit the perfect combination of new Lua features and create a successful fork. Good luck.