[crossfire] Improving IRC availability with a chat bridge

Nathaniel Kipps nkipps at gmail.com
Sun Feb 3 15:47:43 CST 2019

On Sat, Feb 2, 2019 at 9:21 PM Ruben Safir <ruben at mrbrklyn.com> wrote:
> > > I see great reasons to end web based forums..
> >
> > Can you give some of these reasons? I'd love to hear them.
> They depend on  a browser, they spy on you, they are not quick, they
> don't integrate with my email client, I can't run them from a shell,
> they are a security nightmare, they don't allow for smother
> communications .... etc etc etc.

Let's not be too hasty here. After all, those are perfectly valid
reasons, but they are only reasons why *you* choose not to use those
communication methods, and not reasons to get rid of them entirely. To
follow the same argument, I could say that we should end the IRC
because "it depends on specialized client software, it doesn't let me
smoothly integrate images and video into the chat, I can't run it from
my phone, and it makes it very hard for non-savvy people to
communicate." Remember, the systems that the CF community uses to
communicate are there for the benefit of all community members, and it
is up to the entire community to make reasonable accommodations so
that we exclude as few people as possible. Just because some people do
not wish to use a specific communication channel does not mean that
the project should not endorse it.

And so, the issue we are trying to address here is that there is a
division between the members of the crossfire community. There are
some that prefer and are very familiar with IRC, but have issues with
using other methods of instant chat, and there are those that prefer
more modern systems like Slack and Discord, but have issues with older
chat systems like IRC. As it currently is, it does not entirely make
sense to use IRC only, or to use Slack/Discord only, as we will be
alienating people either way. That is why I am proposing that we have
a way of bridging the two, so as to best serve both types of community
users, and ensure the gap between "IRC people" and "non-IRC people"
does not continue to widen. Of course, a bridge like this will almost
certainly require some kind of sacrifice on both sides of the fence,
the true question is whether the expanded accessibility is worth the
additional sacrifice.

More specifically, the two primary areas that would "sacrifice" are A)
the IRC chat messages would be sent to a third party, and could be
read by and responded to by members that are not on IRC, and B) the
message history in the "other" chat system would most likely be
limited, so users of that system would not be able to easily
scrollback to their heart's content, as they are accustomed to.


(P.S. Ruben, perhaps I should clarify that I'm not trying to attack
your perspective, only point out that it's a personal choice, and I
don't think it should be a guiding principle for the project)

(That being said, I do hope that everyone on this list continues to
respond with their own comments and opinions.)


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