[Telepathy] future of Telepathy?

Dominik George nik at naturalnet.de
Thu Apr 28 15:26:11 UTC 2016


>You can. I can. Daniel Pocock can. That's 3 of us.
>Now ask yourself - who are we making this software for? For us 3?
>Or for the masses out there, hoping that maybe they will see value
>in using free/open source?
>Without users, any project is effectively dead. So yes, I will struggle
>even for the sake of having few more users.

maybe stop thinking about Telepathy as a stand-alone tool. I think we should see free communication as a whole. Telepathy should be part of that and bring ideals forward by being a good frontend.

There is no benefit for anyone in pulling users of other messengers over to telepathy:

 - Users will be using a product that will always be worse than the original, because supporting all of the proprietary stuff is close to impossible and undocumented things will keep changing. Things will keep breaking. For Skype, it's even worse. There is no way for supporting Skype except RPCing the original client - why should someone install original Skype, then go and use Telepathy as a frontend? None of this makes any sense, and Telepathy will take damage because people believe it supports something, then find out it's crap. *People leaving after a bad experience is much worse than people not coming in the first place!*

- Developers will have to support stuff they cannot support because there is nothing to rely on. Users will be complaining, and devs will answer „I don't know, something broke in $protocol“ - users will take that as finger-pointing and lose trust in Telepathy and free software in general.

This is not only true for Telepathy. It is true for all projects that strive to be a painless drop-in replacement for everyone. Look at Ubuntu - started out as a user-friendly Linux Desktop for Windows users, now it is an unusable software museum and harder to get running than any recent Debian release.

I see no point in running for market share - if you pay close attention to this discussion, it becomes obvious that the only gain for Telepathy would be market share among chat clients. That somehow contradicts the ideals of an open community. Why do you bother if Pidgin has twice as many users? Who actually cares?

And it is that kind of competitive thinking that keeps free communication and a free network trapped in stone age - if all of us got together and get free-rtc backends, frontends *and* marketing up and running instead of arguing about how to increase client market share, there would indeed be a realistic chance of getting people to use it.

Let's get the message out, bring more clients into good shape for modern XMPP, find a sponsor and advertise it just as TPTB do.

Sounds like some childish dream that won't work out? Sure, I pitty you if a dream is not a good starting point for you anymore. If you don't try, but wave a white flag in front of Facebook Inc. by supporting their stuff as a last resort to gain market share, *then* you will soon be lost in irrelevance.

These were my last words in this discussion because I might soon become a PITA to some readers - thanks for listening 😼!

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