Neurodiversities like autism spectrum, ADD/ADHD, etc. can cause difficulties in understanding subtle or nonverbal cues, empathizing with people, interpreting others’ tone, and moderating one’s own tone, among many others.
In my extremely anecdotal experience, the prevalence of ASD and ADD/ADHD are much higher in technology-oriented communities than in the general population, and they’re frequently undiagnosed, especially in successful individuals–anyone who has the time and experience to debate programming language design is hopefully living pretty high up the Maslow pyramid.
I’m not advocating for anyone to be given a pass on bad behaviour, but I would like us all to try to keep in mind that what reads as brusque and slightly aggressive to one audience might have been intended as direct, to-the-point and free of any emotional connotation. And likewise, messages that are friendly but content-light might make many people feel more welcome, but come across as off-topic, irrelevant noise to others.
I’ve been hanging around the Scala community for a long, long time, and have seen a lot of unwelcoming behaviour go not only unpunished but unremarked, whether it was intended that way or not. I’m glad that the community is taking it seriously.
This is a good point. The only way I know to make this actionable, in addition to gently pointing out to people when there are ways to improve, is to encourage a high degree of tolerance. Not because we want malicious actors to get away with a lot, but because we don’t want to paint as malicious everyone who has “imperfect” interactions.
I don’t think hyper tolerance is a good thing. It leads to emotional blows up and can discourage people from other camps.
I think a some sort of balance can be achieved if delegate a bit of moderator’s role to an author of topic.
if an author open a sip, the constructive critique should be welcome. if someone open pre sip it can be too early for critics, there can be welcome some sort of brainstorming.
I personally try to be tolerant when other people are discussing something between each other.
But I don’t like an idea to be tolerant when I ask a help to formalize a question and someone explain me about my XYZ problem. I can be tolerant but I think it is unwelcome for me personally.