Three Monkeys, Three Typewriters, Two Days

February 10, 2003

Whence come all the entitled whiners?

I can't tell whether this is a failing of open source software users, people who file Mozilla bugs, or American society in general, but I'm running into more and more people who think that everyone owes them someting:

Scenario 1: Someone files a feature request on an area of code that has so many issues that it needs a total rewrite or close to it instead of new features (helper apps come to mind, as do some parts of layout and anything dealing with view-source). The bug gets five votes from people who think this is the best feature idea since the <img> tag. This is interpreted as a mandate from "The People" that someone should drop everything and fix that bug right now.

Scenario 2: Someone files a bug. 36 hours later they complain about the bug not having gotten looked at. Nevermind that during those 36 hours there were 250 bugs reported (most of them duplicates, just like the bug in question). Clearly the bug should be looked at yesterday.

Scenario 3: Someone files yet another duplicate of a "bug" that has been marked INVALID. This is seen as indication that the bug should obviously be reopened and fixed right this instant.

These examples demonstrate what is, in my mind, the biggest danger to the Mozilla project—the explosion of abusive and bratty bug reporters. This is the major contributor to my current attempts to reduce the amount of time I spend on Mozilla. It's just not worth my time to be threatened and cursed at every time I read my mail.

I haven't had to deal with such continuous displays of childishness since my brothers passed the age of 2 and it became possible to actually explain something to them and for them to understand that they are not the only people in the world who matter.

Posted by bzbarsky at February 10, 2003 5:01 PM