Michael Haggerty <mhag...@alum.mit.edu> wrote:
> On 08/04/2016 05:58 PM, Johannes Schindelin wrote:
> > [...]
> > Even requiring every contributor to register with GitHub would be too much
> > of a limitation, I would wager.
> > [...]

> * Discussion of pull requests can be done either
>   * via the website (super easy for beginners but powerful for
> experienced users),
>   * by setting up email notifications for your account and replying to
> those emails, or
>   * via an API.
>   Such discussion is all in markdown, which supports light formatting,
> hyperlinks, and @-mentions.


> Disclaimer: I work for GitHub, but in this email I'm speaking for myself.
> Michael
> [1] I concede that people who refuse on ideological grounds to use
> proprietary software will find this step insurmountable. Perhaps we
> could come up with a workaround for such people.

I'm one of those ideological people and I don't see an
acceptable workaround.  GitHub already has misfeatures designed
to lock people in into centralized messaging:

* pull request feature doesn't work for self-hosted repos
  (this disincentivizes people from running and improving

* "noreply" email addresses

* @-mentions you wrote about

* custom email notifications

This is a problem with Gitlab, Redmine, etc, too:
they cannot interoperate with each other.

At least for now, large proprietary mail providers like Gmail
still interoperate with whatever Free Software SMTP software I
run.  I dread the day when that is no longer true.

Some of these problems I hope public-inbox (or something like
it) can fix and turn the tide towards email, again.  In
contrast, public-inbox is designed to push decentralization:

* "reply" links are instructions for "git send-email" which
  encourage reply-to-all (this applies to what Jeff said
  about vger going down, I noticed it, too)

* anybody can clone the code + repo, replicate the
  instances, and tweak it to their needs.

* public-inbox.org/git/$MESSAGE_ID/t.atom allows subscriptions
  to Atom feeds without any registration or user-tracking

* Message-IDs are exposed for proper threading and interop

* low-bandwidth, Tor-friendly design to encourage deployments
  even behind NATs and firewalls.

Anyways, my optimistic side might interpret your advocacy as
GitHub already feeling threatened by public-inbox.  I certainly
wouldn't expect it at this stage, but I certainly hope it will
be the case one day :)

Disclaimer: I've always been willing to risk a lifetime of
unemployment for ideology.
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