This blog includes two statements. One from Dries Buytaert, as Drupal Project Lead, and another from Megan Sanicki, as the Executive Director of the Drupal Association and the Drupal Association Board.

We recognize that events and conversations earlier this year surfaced many concerns and needs within the community. One in particular is related to Larry Garfield’s role within Drupal. After several conversations with Larry, and careful consideration, we can now provide an update to this situation, our decisions, and Larry’s role moving forward.

We thank you for your patience while we spent many hours meeting with Larry and outside experts to resolve this matter. We recognize that actions were taken quickly before, which resulted in poor communication, and we wanted to avoid this happening again. We made sure to provide the proper time and attention these conversations needed before releasing this follow-up post.

We know our poor communication in the past led to frustration with us and pain for others. For that, we are sorry. We want to learn from this and improve. We listened to the community’s request to provide more streamlined, clear, and easy-to-follow communication. So, this post includes a statement from Dries Buytaert, as Project Lead, followed by a statement from Megan Sanicki, Executive Director of the Drupal Association.

Statement from Dries Buytaert, as Drupal Project Lead

I know there are many people out there still uneasy about where things were left off with regards to Larry's status and uncertainty around why he was asked to leave. I would like to personally clear up these things.

The actions that led me to ask Larry to resign involve a woman who attended Drupal community events with Larry, and was "allowed" to contribute by him. I originally characterized these actions as 'beliefs,' which was inaccurate on my part. To be clear, potential legal and ethical questions were raised by various people, including the Drupal Association lawyers, that this person could be vulnerable and may have been subject to exploitation, which raised the risk of substantial damage to the project.

Based on the legal and ethical risks to the Drupal project caused by Larry’s actions, both the Drupal Association and I needed to take action.

In balancing these questions and this risk, with Larry’s stated desire for privacy, the most obvious solution at the time was to ask him to resign. This was difficult. Larry has been a longtime contributor and colleague, and given the gravity of this situation, I did not communicate as clearly as I should have. When Larry chose not to resign, I took no immediate action with Larry’s role in the community in order to allow more time to better understand the situation and for mediation to occur.

Instead of continuing a dialogue and working towards a solution, Larry chose to end our discussion and share parts of the information surrounding this situation publicly. I understand why Larry blogged, and I support Larry’s — and every community member’s — right to speak out constructively when they disagree with those of us in leadership roles. However Larry’s blogs led people to think that I, and the Drupal Association, doxxed, bullied, and discriminated against him, which we did not. His blog posts led many to think that people who are into kink are not welcome in our community, which is not true. Larry's posts created material disruption to the project and the Association based on incomplete and inaccurate information. Even though Larry saw the negative impact he further inflamed the situation with additional blog posts.

Our current governance model lays out numerous positions that can be held within the project and who has the ability to appoint or remove people from them. Larry’s various roles and who governs them are listed in the table below. Most of Larry’s leadership roles are associated with the Drupal Association, but as project lead, I am responsible for assigning technical leadership positions within the project. Part of my job is to appoint and replace maintainers, to make sure the team functions well; and to make sure the leadership team is effective setting the technical direction of the project as well as collaborating with other members of the Drupal community to achieve our technical vision.

After talking to Larry and consulting other key contributors, I remain steadfast in my decision that it is best for Drupal that Larry should not continue to hold a technical leadership role. I've therefore decided to remove Larry as a core subsystem maintainer and as the PHP-FIG representative for Drupal. Larry will maintain his individual contributor roles which means he can participate in the development of Drupal as a regular member of the community.

Statement from Megan Sanicki, Executive Director of the Drupal Association and the Drupal Association Board

As the Executive Director of the Drupal Association a key part of my job is to protect the Drupal Association and the project from risk and harm. The Drupal Association is the steward of two critical drivers for Drupal’s longevity: Drupal.org and DrupalCon. And we are charged with caring for those spaces. Should the sustainability of the Drupal Association be impacted, we would no longer be able to maintain Drupal.org, which would have devastating implications for the project.

As Larry stated in his blog post, he was in a relationship with a woman he describes as “acutely autistic” and “mentally handicapped”. They attended Drupal events together where, in Larry’s own words, he “allowed” her to contribute to Drupal. The Drupal Association Board and I learned about this information from other sources as well as from Larry himself before Larry’s blog post was issued.

I was concerned not only about this person’s well-being, but I also had legal concerns about her ability to give informed consent or whether she was being exploited. The Drupal Association recognizes that Larry did not use the accurate medical terms to describe this person and we also recognize that most vulnerable people have the ability to consent. However, in this case, given the information we received about this person, we were concerned that it was possible that she could not consent. I sought input from board members and from professional experts, including legal counsel, who expressed concern that Larry’s action in his leadership roles created possible legal risk to the organization.

I learned about these issues just as the DrupalCon Baltimore sessions were about to be announced, and in order to give myself time to evaluate the risks, I ended Larry’s role as track chair and removed his session for only DrupalCon Baltimore. Making a decision for just one event provided me the time to better understand the situation and how to address the risks and concerns with appropriate counsel and authorities. The Drupal Association can not and should not investigate or adjudicate legal matters. We referred the situation to our legal counsel and followed their advice by removing Larry from leadership roles and we referred the matter to authorities.

Larry's subsequent blog posts harmed the community and had a material impact on the Drupal Association, including membership cancellations from those who believed we doxed, bullied, and discriminated against Larry as well as significant staff disruption. Due to the harm caused, the Drupal Association is removing Larry Garfield from leadership roles that we are responsible for, effective today.

These roles include being a DrupalCon track chair, DrupalCon speaker, member of the Drupal Association Advisory Board, and a member of the Licensing Working Group. Larry will maintain his individual contributor roles that the Drupal Association governs, which includes attending DrupalCon and contributing on Drupal.org using his Drupal.org user profile. It is important to note that Dries recused himself from the Drupal Association board decisions on this matter to avoid as many conflicts of interests as possible.

As long as Larry does not harm or disrupt the project, he will continue to be a member of the community as an individual contributor. However, we reserve the right to remove Larry's individual contributor roles if that is not the case. Also, we recognize that situations can change over time, so the Drupal Association will revisit these decisions in two years.

I recognize that my communication to Larry and with the community did not provide transparency into this situation and I apologize for the pain and confusion that caused. Our advisors told us not to share these details in order to protect all parties pending evaluation from authorities. Also, when Larry shared these details during the appeal process, he asked us to keep them confidential. It is my hope that this statement provides the clarity that many have been requesting. 

What We Have Learned

Dries, Megan, and the Drupal Association Board of Directors hope that the community can stay focused on healing and the needed discussions about ways we can improve our community.

It is clear that we were unprepared for a challenge of this complexity. We struggled to move forward in a careful, timely, and clear fashion. We need to provide the community with clarity and understanding whenever possible. Many ideas are surfacing from the recent community discussions and we are looking at them to identify other ways to be better prepared for future challenges.

Another key take-away from this incident is that everyone in our community needs to be able to understand the answers to these questions:

  • What is expected of me by the community?
  • What can I expect from the community?
  • How is Drupal governed?
  • How can I participate in governance?

The best way for the community to get these answers is by working together to refine our community governance model. We support this work and we are eager to help the community achieve its vision.

We believe this community is a role model for the world on how to be a great open source community. Even at its messiest, we believe this community is strong and has much to share with other projects and communities. We consistently come together to solve hard problems. Even now, we are coming together to redefine our community governance and we are confident Drupal will become stronger because of it.

If you want to be part of creating a stronger and healthier community for the future, we encourage you to get involved in the discussions taking place on Drupal.org. Plus, you can go here to learn about the findings from the recent Community Discussions that were mediated by Whitney Hess along with the next steps that the community wants to take in evolving governance. We hope you will join this effort.

Governance of Roles

As mentioned in Dries' statement, these are Larry's roles and who governs each one.

Larry Garfield’s Role Role Type Who governs this role Status
Technical Leader (Core Maintainer & PHP FIG) Leadership Role Project Lead Removed as of 2017-07-13
DrupalCon Presenter Leadership Role Drupal Association Removed as of 2017-07-13
DrupalCon Program Team / Track Chair Leadership Role Drupal Association Removed as of 2017-07-13
Licensing Working Group Leadership Role Drupal Association Removed as of 2017-07-13
Drupal Association Advisory Board Leadership Role Drupal Association Removed as of 2017-07-13
DrupalCon Attendee Individual Contributor - subject to DrupalCon Code of Conduct Drupal Association Intact as of 2017-07-13
Drupal.org user profile Individual Contributor - subject to Terms of Service Drupal Association Intact as of 2017-07-13

Comments

Ben Finklea’s picture

A huge thank you to Dries, Megan, and the entire board for your work on this issue. I was pulling for you (and praying for you) and the community to "figure it out" so we can move past it. As it turns out, there was a lot of information that we didn't have that your post today makes clear(er). As difficult as it was, you did the right thing by withholding the identity of a potential victim. You got that part right.

Thank you for apologizing. We forgive you. Please forgive us, too, for our impatience, jumping to conclusions, and hateful words.

Let's all do better next time.

--Ben Finklea, CEO
Volacci

techsoldaten’s picture

"If you judge people, you have no time to love them."

Relationships are complex. It's easier to judge actions. 

The fact that Larry was doxxed is clear. The choice to judge Larry based on that action is what many found so problematic.

Having read all of the official correspondence related to his matter, I find this letter dissatisfying. If it takes 6 months to state your case clearly, perhaps you should not be taking such actions in the first place.

mglaman’s picture

If it takes 6 months to state your case clearly, perhaps you should not be taking such actions in the first place.

It states clearly they listened to legal counsel and followed due process available to them. I am not a lawyer, but this was obviously a difficult and sensitive issue. I would follow such counsel to prevent any larger ramifications.

hgurol’s picture

Oh well, they obviously listened to the legal counsel, only.

Didn't Dries say something like; "We are listening to the community" and "You have been heard". Oh really? I can see that the community feedback fell on deaf ears and it's very clear that they only listened to the legal counsel.

mike stewart’s picture

mikl’s picture

Larry's subsequent blog posts harmed the community and had a material impact on the Drupal Association, including membership cancellations from those who believed we doxed, bullied, and discriminated against Larry as well as significant staff disruption. Due to the harm caused, the Drupal Association is removing Larry Garfield from leadership roles that we are responsible for, effective today.

So now the official explanation is that Larry is being punished for defending himself against the actions that was already decided before he posted his first blog posts?

Interesting post hoc justification. I guess there truly was no way out for Larry. If he hadn’t spoken up, then you’d have gotten away with demoting him without having to offer justification. Since he did speak up, then you can use that as justification for demoting him.

Sic transit gloria Drupali.

kappaluppa’s picture

'As long as Larry does not harm or disrupt the project, he will continue to be a member of the community as an individual contributor. "

This sounds like you are saying:
Oops, we wrongly judged and accused him. But then he got too much attention for defending himself after what we said and did and we didn't like it. So now as long as he behaves the way we want him to, and does not make things difficult for us, he can participate.
Sounds so much like what you accused him of.

The two statements sound very alike, almost as if orchestrated to both say the same thing which is nothing new, really. It is painful to watch the cycle repeated each time a statement is put out to appease the community and absolve yourselves. Back to square one. This solves nothing.

(...now wondering when I'm going to get my walking papers...)

cweagans’s picture

This is ridiculous. I'm cancelling my DA membership because you are continuing to handle this situation poorly.

cfbauer’s picture

In balancing these questions and this risk, with Larry’s stated desire for privacy, the most obvious solution at the time was to ask him to resign. 

...

Instead of continuing a dialogue and working towards a solution, Larry chose to end our discussion and share parts of the information surrounding this situation publicly. 

So Dries, in his capacity as leader of the Drupal project, and in his own words has authority for "assigning technical leadership positions" asked Larry to resign. Why would Dries then expect Larry to continue a dialogue "working towards a solution?" If a leader with broad powers in assigning leadership positions "asked" me to step down from a leadership position, I would interpret that not as a request but as a demand. I can certainly understand why Larry would interpret things that way and act accordingly.

The Drupal Association Board and I learned about this information from other sources as well as from Larry himself before Larry’s blog post was issued.

These "other sources" are a major area of concern which, however many months and blog posts by Dries and Megan later, still have (to my knowledge) not been addressed. The only source of information we have is Larry's posts, which, to paraphrase, says that members of the Drupal community illegally investigated Larry's personal life. That information was brought to Dries and the Drupal Association which took action against Larry based on what was brought to them.

This sets a dangerous precedent that any member of the Drupal community can have their personal, non-Drupal life investigated by other members and punished as a result. This is scary, and probably scarier that Drupal leadership doesn't feel the need to explain it.

sinasalek’s picture

As techsoldaten mentioned, this response is still not satisfactory. The problem is that it seems Drupal Assoc nor Dries do not understand communities point of view on this matter, which is very concerning, honestly guys what are you doing?. I still see no action against those that illegally investigated Larry's personal life, what they did is even worse than what Larry may have done, we don't want stalkers or those that violate other's privacy in anyway in our community.

Although i appreciate any effort to resolve this matter and i know that you are in a difficult position, After 6 months! the only thing that satisfies me now is to see some real changes in communities governance specially Drupal Association

I encourage everyone to participate in Drupal Community Governance, hopefully we can fix the partially broken Drupal governance.

sina.salek.ws, Software Manager & Lead developer
Feel freedom with open source softwares

calbasi’s picture

I'm waiting for Dries left his "benevolent dictatorship" and Drupal project rules as a democratic Republic, like Debian project is. 

Please, go ahead with this, as you told some months ago.

www.calbasi.net
Ps: If you can not understand me, it's my poor English skills fault :-p

drunken monkey’s picture

Thanks for posting these statements! I think probably the most damage was done by your hasty communication in the beginning (to the community, but possibly also to Larry), so it's good to see you take time to come up with clear statements and (hopefully) careful decisions this time.

I still would have hoped for a more amicable resolution, and I still feel uncomfortable regarding some of your explanations – however, with just your word against Larry's in some parts (were you don't agree), and you naturally being unwilling or unable to share all details, there's just no way to be sure what really happened. In such cases, I would be really surprised if either you or Larry told the complete truth.

So, in conclusion, I'm probably as satisfied as could be hoped, giving you the benefit of the doubt and hoping that nothing like this will happen again (or it can be handled way better next time). Here's to doing better in the future!

I still see no action against those that illegally investigated Larry's personal life

That was already mentioned in another post a while back: the CWG is/was handling those CoC violations, like they normally would – their decisions are just private, which is the correct thing to do, in my opinion. However, it was also mentioned that they'd already apologized and resigned from their official position(s).

So, I'm pretty sure the DA/CWG did take those violations seriously, too. However, if anything with potential legal consequences was uncovered through such a violation, it's clear that the DA can't just ignore it.

sinasalek’s picture

That was already mentioned in another post a while back: the CWG is/was handling those CoC violations, like they normally would – their decisions are just private, which is the correct thing to do, in my opinion. However, it was also mentioned that they'd already apologized and resigned from their official position(s).

Thanks for the info, According to CWG original statement and followups on this whole incident i think they handled their responsibility far better than DA. I'm certainly pleased to know that proper actions have been taken against those that stalked and violated Larry's privacy but since their action was public and seriously damaged the community (directly and indirectly) and most likely influenced the decision regarding Larry's ban (According to Dries's original statement regarding the matter) , IMHO the details of the decision should have been made public.

here is the link to the CWG statement @drunken-monkey mentioned 

sina.salek.ws, Software Manager & Lead developer
Feel freedom with open source softwares

fgm’s picture

After so much noise around the handling of the initial events, it is hard to see how the two statements above can be published without also including a third statement by the other main interested party, namely Larry, even if it were only to confirm an agreement to disagree.

samniosaki’s picture

All I get from this post is if you bring someone to an event with a disability you're subject to shaming, ridicule and removal.

leesbian’s picture

My understanding from Dries' post was that Larry also allowed her to contribute to the project

As an event organiser (the London Magento Meetup, FWIW), I would expect that ALL would be welcome... so I still don't understand Dries reasoning for his actions (if anything, it makes him - and the association - appear intolerant of people with disability. Congrats to him, if that's what he was aiming to achieve)

Alex Malkov’s picture

I can not agree with this (Statement from Dries Buytaert)

Larry's posts created material disruption to the project and the Association based on incomplete and inaccurate information. Even though Larry saw the negative impact he further inflamed the situation with additional blog posts.

and with this (Statement from Megan Sanicki)

Larry's subsequent blog posts harmed the community and had a material impact on the Drupal Association, including membership cancellations from those who believed we doxed, bullied, and discriminated against Larry as well as significant staff disruption. Due to the harm caused, the Drupal Association is removing Larry Garfield from leadership roles that we are responsible for, effective today.

In my opinion, such statements are too categorical, or in other words - they are wrong.

To my great regret, it seems to me that DA can not cope with the current situation.

I consider myself a part of the community, I respect and remain in it. However, I come to the conclusion that my modest contribution to the community will be bypassing the DA.

robertDouglass’s picture

Dries and Megan, I don't understand why nobody mentions that the original perpetrators of the doxxing had issued ultimatums against you and Larry that were aimed at forcing you (Dries/Megan) to push Larry out or risk having the project "embarrassed" by the publication of the doxxing dossier? And that this same ultimatum, not Larry's vindictive urge to hurt you and the project, are what was behind the timeline of his outing post? I'll remind you it's a post he never wanted to write, and that he felt he had his back against the wall. Why is the behavior of these people who doxxed and issued blackmail ultimatums still not addressed? Instead, you're painting a picture that again blames the victim (of the doxxing and blackmail).

Dave Reid’s picture

Why is the behavior of these people who doxxed and issued blackmail ultimatums still not addressed?

Why does this lie continue to be spread? Because it was handled by the CWG.

See https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Qlc0FvM4UWyn4DpW8JKRcVqnHAIdrj2INOZZ...

We have been working with this individual, who has shown a huge amount of remorse and regret over the way they dealt with this issue. This person understands that they violated the Code of Conduct and fully accepts the consequences of their actions. They have cooperated fully with us throughout this process, even going above and beyond the requests we have made of them. They have agreed to step down from all positions of responsibility and leadership within the community and make personal apologies to those directly impacted by their actions. We are disturbed to find out that this person has received a range of threats in recent weeks and ask that the community provides them with space to heal and to rebuild trust with those who were impacted by their words and actions.

Senior Drupal Developer for Lullabot | www.davereid.net | @davereid

robertDouglass’s picture

Instead of continuing a dialogue and working towards a solution, Larry chose to end our discussion and share parts of the information surrounding this situation publicly.

This sentence should read "Larry and I were blackmailed by someone who issued the ultimatum that either I/we kick Larry out, or they go public with information that would embarrass Drupal and smear Larry". Instead, it makes Larry sound like he outed himself due to some vindictive urge and bad sportsmanship. 

techsoldaten’s picture

Meanwhile, in reality, some of us received those screencaps years before and the people who circulated them are still part of the community.

robertDouglass’s picture

The person who blackmailed Dries and Larry should be permanently banned from the community with possible legal proceedings taken against them. 

jeffsacco’s picture

I am cancelling my association with this organization and platform.  Grow up children.

kahsdfjklhasdj’s picture

The wording of this post is very confusing. It seems to be suggesting that Garfield did nothing wrong with the woman. If that is the case, it would seem to me that what happened was

1) You all thought he did something bad

2) You initiated legal proceedings against him

3) Lol oops he was totes innocent guess we messed up oh nbd right fam

4) While trying to defend himself against your false rape accusations, he said things that caused people to question your ability to lead Drupal

5) So he's fired.

Are you sure that Garfield is the bad guy here?

hurricane66’s picture

I was allowed to effectively cancel my DA membership earlier this spring. Given the official statements from the DA leadership on this issue, my decision to cancel was the right one then, and even more so now. Going forward I certainly keep a good and secure distance between my company, my self and the DA.

jamsilver’s picture

sonyaellenmann’s picture

Are you reversing your position on whether Crell violated the CoC, or do you still support the CWG's finding that he didn't? And why did Dries misrepresent the reason for expelling Crell? Either this is a post-hoc justification, as others have suggested (both publicly and privately), or Dries lied to the community. Take your pick, both would be serious issues... or at least this outsider thinks so.

gdemet’s picture

The members of the Community Working Group addressed your first question in a statement that was released back in April:

While we did not find that Larry had violated the Drupal Code of Conduct, it is important to understand that the information that was shared with us raised concerns about some of his actions in our community, which was one of the reasons that we escalated this matter to Dries and the Drupal Association. While the Code of Conduct communicates our shared ideals as a community, it is not a rulebook, and in this case we felt it important for us to escalate concerns that went beyond the chartered jurisdiction of our group.

With regard to your other concerns, it seems to me that what's being said here is pretty consistent with what you wrote back in March: 

Buytaert and executive director Megan Sanicki both mentioned needing to protect the privacy of a third party....It is possible that the elusive third party is a submissive partner Garfield once brought to a Drupal conference. Insiders have speculated to Inc. that Buytaert et al. may consider this woman a victim.

thatsalie’s picture

> While the Code of Conduct communicates our shared ideals as a community

https://www.drupal.org/governance/community-working-group

CWG members are selected from the Drupal community by Dries Buytaert and/or his designate(s).

AFAIK the Code Of Conduct was never confirmed by a community wide voting. It communicates the shared ideals of some people, that's for sure.

gdemet’s picture

The Community Working Group had no role in the creation of the Drupal Code of Conduct, as it didn't exist yet.  You can read more about where our Code of Conduct came from and the process that led to its adoption here: https://groups.drupal.org/dcoc

I see you're new to the Drupal community, but if you have thoughts about changes you think should be made to the Code of Conduct, you (or anyone else) are welcome to share them in our issue queue: https://www.drupal.org/node/2894381

sunnydeveloper’s picture

You should open an issue to propose the CoC is approved by the community.

That would be of incredible value.

gdemet’s picture

I agree that if any significant changes or revisions to the Code of Conduct are made, there should be a way for the broader community to validate them. If you'd like to make that suggestion, the relevant issue is here: https://www.drupal.org/node/2894381

samuelv’s picture

Based on the legal and ethical risks to the Drupal project caused by Larry’s actions, both the Drupal Association and I needed to take action.

Why? Based on what we know, all you had before you was hearsay, with no credible first hand source of wrong-doing. Is it the Association's official policy to engage in legal manoeuvres based purely on gossip?

Larry's subsequent blog posts harmed the community and had a material impact on the Drupal Association, including membership cancellations from those who believed we doxed, bullied, and discriminated against Larry as well as significant staff disruption.

"Harm" is a mighty vague term to be throwing around. Let's break it down.

The community was harmed when one of its members stalked and attempted to purge another, prompting a witch-finding expedition by the leadership, based on tainted and dubious evidence, in direct violation of stated codes of conduct.

The Drupal Association was harmed by its leadership's inability to convey trust and clarity in a sticky situation, prompting its membership to withdraw financial support. You apologize for this at the start, but you apparently do not take responsibility for the actual consequences.

The project was harmed by the demotion of a valuable contributor in multiple leadership positions and the subsequent bad blood created by alienating a non-trivial amount of other contributors.

Placing the blame for "harm" purely on Larry's series of blog posts makes this a mealy mouthed non-apology, especially considering the power imbalance involved, and the casual disregard for the moral right of a person to defend themselves against their accuser.

I would also imagine recent events elsewhere have shown that having lawyers tell you to "reserve the right to [do otherwise] if [accused does not comply]" is not look a good look either.

Those protesting this state of affairs have furthermore been smeared and slandered on social media using various fashionable progressive epiteths. Now we find the weaponized issue of "the ability to consent" wielded as justification for a parade of missteps and post-hoc justifications.

Just because people disagree with how you conduct yourself, does not mean they disagree with your stated politics or values. It just means they do not believe you are sincere in practicing what you preach. This has been the issue all along for many, and based on this statement, nothing has changed.

dealancer’s picture

I was trying not to post any comments on this topic, but this post is a way too much... Here are few ideas:

1. DA discriminated Larry based on his sexual preferences

This story is similar to the story of the Alan Turing who was convicted by the UK courts for being a gay despite the fact that Turing developed Enigma, which helped the UK to win over nazis.

From what initially appeared on the Internet, it looked like DA made a decision to revoke leadership roles from a Drupal community member because he is different from other people.

2. There was no any evidence of the violation of Code of Conduct by Larry

See https://docs.google.com/document/d/1tcwuuip9qAMtGNir7_aD1zhWubEkisNnkG3n...

3. DA wanted to make Larry silent by revoking his speaker role

I personally don't think that being a speaker at DrupalCon Baltimore is a leadership role. I think revoking it is even more offensive than revoking other roles because to become a speaker you don't need to be a community leader or DA board. That was obviously made to stop any public discussions that may arise at Larry's session.

4. Misinterpretation of Larry's words

"Allowed her to contribute" is taken out of context. In his post, Larry said, "so after she took a free online coding course I allowed her to help me with some small Drupal core patches". After reading Larry's blog he often uses a word "allow" in the meaning of "let" so I don't think it has a negative meaning.

See https://www.garfieldtech.com/blog/tmi-part-2

5. Ethics and moral

From Larry's blog post it looks like he was mentoring this woman a well as he had some kind of relationships with her and providing her a room. Both had a Gorian background, so it may be seen a little bit strange for other people. I don't know anything about Gorean subculture except it is not something illegal in this country. I think  the question that DA had was "Did Larry enslaved this woman?" If yes, that would harm DA reputation and obviously put Larry into jail. However, I don't think that this is something even close to reality. Also, DA does not have the power to handle such issues, because it is the responsibility of courts and judges. Was there a consent or was not is a question that DA could not answer by the information that was published.

6. It looks like DA does not care about that woman

I think DA overreacted to protect themselves in case if anything could go wrong with Larry or if new details will arise, but there was no any evidence that anything could go wrong. Someone said they "protected their asses", which I think makes sense. I don't think it is honest to the community to react in this way because they didn't care about that woman, they cared about DA reputation, which they stated many times. Did they ever speak to this woman at all? According to Larry she is autistic and prefers not to speak to people, so talking to her would probably hard to do, but has a DA ever attempted to do this? Was she against of relationships with Larry? We don't have any evidence of it, so DA's reaction was very protective and irrational based on guesses and prejudices.

7. As a conclusion

After all, this story shows the society we live in. Some of the core values of the Western civilization are absolutized not in favor of the civilization development. Some of the values become dogmas that is actually a burden, rather than a solution towards the development of prosperous future. I see that in order to make other people free and happy, methods that are used are quite repressive and unsuited nowadays.

I don't think that this case will greatly affect Drupal Community and Drupal Association as it is a global tendency. This is the lesson we all should learn and it is not only about kinky people.

Konstantin Komelin’s picture

I don't think that this case will greatly affect Drupal Community and Drupal Association as it is a global tendency. This is the lesson we all should learn and it is not only about kinky people.

Thank you for your deep analysis of the problem but nobody will ever accept and agree with this truth.

As for the Larry's case, hundreds of comments and posts of the community have already missed their target. Nobody listens to them. It's futile.

Just allow those people to wash their dirty hands by such watery statements as this new one.

hurricane66’s picture

Sorry, I somehow didn't get it; what is the lesson to be learned?

Konstantin Komelin’s picture

For me, the main lesson is "Don't judge and you won't be judged".

jamsilver’s picture

A lesson learnt in spite of the DA, rather than embodied by it?

Konstantin Komelin’s picture

"Don't judge and you won't be judged"

This precept is from Orthodox religion, actually.

From my point of view, DA, led by its leader, judged Larry for his sexual preferences and now, when it becomes apparent, they are questioned by the community. If they were tolerant enough and followed the Code of Conduct themselves, it would never happen.

I'm sorry that DA employees - some of them I know in person and respect - are now in such a difficult situation. If they disagree with their leadership, it's actually not so easy to find another job, but I can imagine that the pressure is really high and I would not want to work in such harsh conditions.

As other commenters already suggested, the only solution for the leadership is their resignation. After such long sequence of watery posts, excuses and lie, I don't think anybody will ever believe them again. A strong person can accept their mistakes and take all consequences.

dealancer’s picture

That's obviously a lesson for the Open Source community and the whole humanity on how things should not be done.

matt2000’s picture

Do you or do you not have evidence that Larry mistreated someone? To what civil authorities has the concern been raised? Either he behaved criminally and is dangerous, or you made a bigoted mistake by permanently removing him from his roles. Which is it? You keep writing words, but you still won't answer the basic questions. I will continue to distrust the DA until you and Dries say one of two things:

1.) We removed Larry because we believe he is dangerous and have referred the matter to the SOMEPLACE Police Department who are investigating under Case Number #NUM. Call them at PHONE-NUM if you have testimony or evidence to submit.

or:

2.) We made a mistake. Larry has been fully reinstated and we've made the following restitution to him for the the damage done to his reputation...

snehi’s picture

Dries, Megan

I know it is late, but truth is truth. This blog should be posted few months back.

So that every individual who is in the community can know what are the basic ethics to remain in the community or at the leadership role.

So that in future no one can do things like that. I hope in next 2 year, things will be sorted out and Larry will be back.

Thanks,

Davinder

http://davinder.in

http://openvani.com

hurricane66’s picture

But sure you realise, too, that *dispite* an array of formal (and not so formal) etical rules and guidance and what not, a huge part of this happening is right there; what is the etical base of the project, and who is it for?! In many ways we the community bear a huge responsibility for the current situation as we've allowed ourselfs that deceiving luxury of being managed opposed to manage, and there are real world consequences to that.

memtkmcc’s picture

I don't think that community can handle more of this absurd game of playing and twisting facts, truth and obvious lies from the leadership. Stop this madness!

Dries should resign from leading Drupal project, focus on running his business and let the community decide who is welcome and "allowed" to participate.

Alex Malkov’s picture

Dries should resign from leading Drupal project, focus on running his business and let the community decide who is welcome and "allowed" to participate.

I couldn't agree more. This is a difficult decision for a leader, but it seems to be the best way out of this particular situation.

hurricane66’s picture

Drupal Association, the "plaintiff", the jury, the judge and the executioner all rolled into one. Of course this has to change.

stevepurkiss’s picture

This reminds me of the Little Britain character who thinks he's hypnotising people but he fails miserably at every attempt:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_aZ2bdnG97A

This latest statement is a carefully worded pretext in order to bring in a set of rules of governance of the community according to the Drupal Association - a nonprofit organisation funded mostly by corporations and events where those corporations put on a public display of their products and services. Individual memberships are a very small %age of the funds. Compare this to something like the Free Software Foundation who pride themselves on their high percentage of individual memberships and compare the kind of work they do for Free/Libre Open Source Software, of which Drupal comes under the umbrella of, although many in the Drupal community only refer to it as "Open Source". For those who don't know the difference between Open Source and Free Software please have a read of this:

https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/open-source-misses-the-point.en.html

So as you can see in the post, the roles are set out so we know what positions are classed as leadership (i.e. you have a pronounced influence in the direction of the project within Drupal Association-run events or those covered by it's Code of Conduct) and the couple thrown in at the bottom which come under "contribution", which include going to events (which brings revenue to the Drupal Association) and code contribution (which brings wealth to the project as it relies on code being contributed). This also highlights the fact it has nothing to do with the Diversity and Inclusion issues of people saying they wouldn't go to events if Larry was there, along with the shift of focus from "Larry did something bad" to "Larry did something bad to the DA" which of course only happened after he'd already suffered from whatever went on. There's also been no financial proof of any harm to the DA, in fact all I've seen over the past few weeks is daily tweets from them thanking commercial supporter X or partner company Y, so seems if anything financial support is increasing, which of course is a Good Thing because what little tools we have to collaborate have a chance of staying up a little longer. Of course those tools won't be improving massively very fast because it's not in the commercial interests of most of the supporters of the DA for Drupal to be easy because most companies make money out of Drupal not being easy. I digress.

Meanwhile whilst everyone is discussing the ins-and-outs of whether Larry did this or Dries did that and whether it's morally OK to have sexual persuasion Y, good old George & team are busy drawing up the new set of extended rules which will be implemented in order for something like this situation to "never happen again" which of course it will, because total control (which is what the ones in power always require in order to stay in power) never works, it goes too far and implodes as we are seeing right now before our eyes. How it ends up is different every time - we are already seeing breakaway groups, cooperatively run distributions, and talk of more teaming up in order to bring some sense of normality back into the Drupal world which is after all far far bigger than this small group of power-hungry people sat around a table discussing how they think the world according to them should be.

Now whether the people in these roles actually see this and are deliberately doing it I do not know, I find it hard to believe they don't but having met and spent time with them I know they are all good people who work very hard, far more so than I have seen in any pure corporate environment - what has been built in the Drupal community is truly amazing and everyone involved should be very very proud of themselves and the dedication they have shown, I am in awe of many.

Perhaps it is down to society and the American way with the pure financial view on things. It is true there are many very big projects and clients and partners out there who simply don't want to have the risk of problems arising if they are going to invest millions in a piece of software to run their systems which make them money. They can't afford to have the chx's around complaining about this and that, or the crell's with his crazy ideas of permissive licensing or the purkiss' with his idealistic views of cooperation, they want to know that if they input X they get Y out.

This is why we see rounds of questions being asked to the current community members as to how they want things to progress. You ask your current audience what will please them and you shape your agenda to that. This way you keep as many of those who are willing to submit to your new set of rules and regulations, and you have enough of them that anyone who dares to say different is frowned upon due to the group think, the thought that they may be wrong, the almost incomprehensible though that after all these years and effort they've put in (obvious variations there per individual) that this is in fact all one big game to be able to create wealth by leveraging the value differential between what the creators create and what the capitalists sell.

For many years I've been saying and showing that a cooperative way of scaling the community will result in a better outcome than the top-down command-and-control tactics currently implemented (which come from the military), and I still believe this will be the eventual outcome of this whole episode as we see cooperatives form and grow by those who are disenfranchised with the current setup and just go 'do' as we've become accustomed to in this community of do-ers, I'm just sad that those who are in current places of power don't just be honest and open about the situation and show some support for alternatives. They can't of course because they're already too deep and fear losing control, and a product without a community to support it means they will have trouble selling it to the increasingly bigger companies they need to in order to return the investment they've promised to their investors.

Drupal has shown that amazing things can be built by cooperating, and is a leader in the new way that we work - commons-based peer production as one researcher who used Drupal as his PhD subject enlightened me to. Where it has so far failed is to take this modular web app platform and create the modular business model on top. As commercial elements struggle to find their niches because where they have money they don't have innovation to as much a degree as the whole community put together we will see more fragmentation, more pull to sayings such as "we should focus on one thing well" and meanwhile Drupal will continue to fail to be what it truly could be if only we collaborated at anything like the level we do on the code at the business level too.

The only solution is to build new infrastructure, new supporting organisations which support the vast wide community that is now Drupal but only currently a small percentage actually join in. It is our duty to do this now we have lumbered many governments with it and organisations of all sizes. We still, 13 years after I joined, fail to communicate what Drupal is and why it exists - every day I see posts from new people who've been told to use Drupal but have absolutely no idea of why or what or how and many will go on to develop bad sites because they only see the 0.00001% of what a core download gives them and missed out on things like DrupalVM, simplytest.me, native Drupal CRM, and so on because the 'front page' of the website is dictated by those with the money to do so and community efforts shoved to the geeky backend.

I don't know what the future holds here, it's not looking too great at the moment and if the people doing this do know what they're doing then shame on you, you're destroying the passion, work and lives of many who have done nothing but give you their love. For me, I'm continuing on as usual with my purpose of helping communities to be sustainable and using Drupal to do it. I still stand behind the model the book I've been carrying around the world with me to Drupal events with as a blueprint for how it could be, here's a link and a couple more if anyone's interested in seeing how things could be done differently. Sure, we need governance, but the DA is too intertwined with business to be able to support the community as a whole which I believe is the mission of it:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Networked-Enterprise-Competing-Through-Networks...

https://platform.coop

http://www.fairshares.coop/the-case-for-fairshares/

memtkmcc’s picture

It drills into the deepest core of the situation, so it's both very painful and very true. Hats off to you Steve!

gnuget’s picture

Hi, it was very interesting to know that the biggest part of the money comes from companies and not from the community, i would like to read more about that. 

Can you share your source? Thanks! 

Pages