It’s the user’s responsibility, not ours

I keep hearing statements like this from open source developers:

  • “This is complex software. If you don’t understand it, you shouldn’t be using it.”
  • “Why not use the terminal to do this? If you’re building a website, it’s your responsibility to learn a few shell commands.”
  • “There’s no way we’ll provide automatic updates. That’s the user’s responsibility not ours.”
  • “If you don’t have a large budget and IT staff, you shouldn’t be using this.”

If you ever hear someone talking like this, please throw a banana at them.

These statements show a failure to see beyond the end of our noses.

Every extra responsibility we place on our users is an extra cost, an extra burden we lay on their backs.

You say, “it’s the user’s, responsibility not ours”, what I hear is, “they’re becoming someone else’s users, not yours.”

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