Before I explain my problem I must say that I love your modules APK and AF. I believe they have much potential as you progress them through D6, which I read in your forum asking for suggestions and what will encourage people to use them.

The main problem with the modules is the fact that I've read almost every post you have written, only to find them condensending, and discouraging. We all understand that Drupal is free, and maintainers are working for free, but they knew this coming in. Most people build modules for Drupal because they enjoy contributing to the community, but also understand that many NEW Drupalers will need assistance. Just because a new Drupaler don't understand all the .tpl, PHP, css, or anything much of anything else, doesn't make them stupid, nor should they be made to feel that way in this friendly community. Many just need a point in the right direction and all is well, just as most maintainer Kindly do. Please remember when you first started Drupaling, much to do, but no clear path how to get there, until you progressed as you learned.

Many of us only (wishlist) wish we were as talented as you, with your understanding of the coding process and the likes, and someday we may be. I, as many were told, that no question is a dumb question, it's just a question on a different level. I personally refuse to ask you a question because I feel you will respond with a snide remark or comment. I'm not saying you should hold anyones hand trying to use your modules, I'm saying that after more than 3yrs, there are things you still don't know (per your post), and need assistance. This is not a bad thing, this is how we learn and grow together.

So on my wishlist for your D6 modules, I wish you would be a little more understanding, and a little more kind to Drulalers trying to use your modules.

Thank You Kindly


jwuk’s picture

Hi Red, your posting has had a good effect: I've learned of a couple of modules that I hope I'll eventually use:


Thank you. I don't know Michelle, her site looks interesting and some of its content will help me.

If your comments are true, I imagine such a person isn't the kind that would be receptive to such criticism.

If Michelle isn't like that, I guess
* she'll find those comments very very hurtful, and/or
* she'll feel less inclined to continue contributing so generously to the Drupal community.

I think you must have a really bad toothache today. I hope it'll clear up soon.

Morbus Iff’s picture

Suffice to say, Michelle isn't like that, and someone who registers solely to post something like this is bordering on troll territory. Locking.

BioALIEN’s picture

In the case of Michelle, her records speak volumes. A busy mother, yet still finds time to educate kids around here too. A real soldier to the cause.

If you don't understand anything, why pester the author? Just open a node and let others chip in, its the core foundation Drupal was build upon.

@Michelle, keep doing what you do best.

webchick’s picture

Member for
9 hours 17 min

Nice of you to sign up for a fake account just to personally attack one of our most prolific contributors. Speaks a lot about your character.

On a more serious note, jwuk is right. Posts like this tend to have the effect of hurting feelings and discouraging further contributions. Which, let's face it, is probably the original poster's intent.

So yes. Michelle, please read this because from here on, this thread is now the HOW AWESOME IS MICHELLE? thread!! :D

I'll start!

Michelle is awesome because:

  • She spends so much of her time helping people. In her issue queues, on the forums, on IRC, etc.
  • She is a very conscientious coder, who always endeavours to find the best way of doing things.
  • Unlike most people, who lament the state of Drupal forum support, she actually does something about it.
  • She works closely with other module developers to test early development releases and help them find and fix bugs. We all benefit.
flk’s picture

I love Michelle for the mere fact, I have seen her countless times go out of her way to help others (with anything an everything) not because she gains anything out of it but because she can at the expense of her own work/family.

Gurpartap Singh’s picture

  ✪ She's right now in #drupal-support helping someone with Advanced Forum queries! :D

Greeting card for you, Red Wing:
☠ ☠ ☠

Susan MacPhee’s picture

If webchick thinks so highly about her, than I must too. Webchick knows all.

sirkitree’s picture

I've never heard Michelle be condescending or much anything less than helpful. Even when we're on the verge of arguing in a discussion, lol. I don't know what kind of posts you've been reading, but it usually takes a lot (from what I've seen) to get a snide remark. Strong opinions, sometimes, but you have to have those in order to get anything done around here ;)

+1 Michelle

~Professional: Lullabot

BryanSD’s picture

I too have never observed Michelle to be condescending. The closest I've ever seen her is frustrated. Frustrated when she spends quality support time with people only to find them unwilling to see new perspectives. After spending considerable time in a worn out thread in late 2007 she justifiably once replied back and said:

I took the time explain exactly what happened in civil tones and you respond by being an ass.

Whenever I have one of those bad days at work where I don't feel appreciated, I think of Michelle's line and smile. I then politely move onto a new IT project or support issue where my work is appreciated. Because of Michelle I rarely lost my cool in 2008 and my coworkers thank her.


emmajane’s picture

Michelle is awesome because she ...
* takes the time to answer questions in IRC and is never condescending and always uses language that encourages newbies to get excited about Drupal;
* tries really hard to make her modules WAI-friendly with clean code and appropriate markup;
* is friendly even when her life is crazy and busy;
* puts the community use of her modules ahead of a personal gain of only earning money from their customization (PS Michelle, you need to do less of that because I want you to get paid for your *amazing* work too!);
* understands that Drupal is based on a meritocracy and contributes more into the pool than she takes out with her own questions;
* writes amazing tutorials on her Web site which have really helped me understand the nuances of theming user profiles;
* contributes the code she writes for a community Web site back to Drupal; and,
* wants to make Drupal the best it can be.

Thanks Michelle, you ROCK!!

Damien Tournoud’s picture

Thanks for your hard work on Advanced forum, and your dedication in helping mostly everyone on the IRC, Michelle ;)

EclipseGc’s picture

"She works closely with other module developers to test early development releases and help them find and fix bugs. We all benefit."

And this is SO TRUE. As someone who's worked with Michelle on a number of occasions, she's always been very helpful in testing early releases of modules and giving great feedback. She manages to contribute significantly to Drupal while being a wife AND a mother, and sneaks in support help between her children's naps. She's an amazing contributor and someone whose example is worth following.


Technical Specialist

JuliaKM’s picture

Michelle was one of the first people to help me in IRC and she has been amazingly helpful with Advanced Forum. She can always be counted on to respond when someone has a question, which is amazing considering how many of us rely on her advice.

ghankstef’s picture

I am very grateful for her work and I'm glad to have helped her test her module on one occasion. I hope I can help her more.

sun’s picture

Drupal would not be as awesome as it is without Michelle. Period.

Daniel 'sun' Kudwien

lyricnz’s picture

Michelle rocks because she proves that a stay-at-home parent can still kickass at Drupal. Now all I need is enough work to stay-at-home :)

timmillwood’s picture

When I was busy creating a community site in Drupal Michelle was a great help. I sat on IRC for a few days in a row asking Michelle questions on her modules.

We need more people like this.

stella’s picture

Michelle is just awesome, end of story.

I think we should all aspire to be like Michelle. Personally I don't know how she does it and where she finds the time to do it all - please let me in on the secret!! She's always on IRC assisting people with their queries, has contributed some wonderful modules, and is always very friendly and helpful. Michelle, you rock!

Sophia’s picture

Michelle is so awesome, that because of her contribution, I have already successfully converted and implemented a former Joomla/phpBB site/forum (200 happy members) and am now seriously working on converting Invision Power Board to Drupal. This is all the more special because we payed a lot of money for the licence, yet Drupal (with her modules I may add) is just BETTER.

'nuff said, Michelle, we love you :D

Michelle’s picture

Awww, thanks. :)


merlinofchaos’s picture

Red Wing:

Drupal is a meritocracy. Michelle has spent the last four years proving her merit by contributing. So far you have contributed only a flame. Michelle has contributed code and help and has done a lot of great work. You have absolutely no right to post this kind of garbage, even if Michelle has been short with people in the forums in the past.

You need to walk a mile in Michelle's shoes before you have the right to criticize her.

-- Merlin

[Read my writing:]
[Read my Coding blog: Angry Donuts]

rjleigh’s picture

...Unless mod maintainers write code specifically for their needs. It's obvious that these are well maintained modules, with recent commits and releases.

tizzo’s picture

Michelle has answered even my most beginner questions about Drupal development. She's exceptionally helpful if she has the time and very polite if she doesn't.

Thanks for all your AWESOME contributions Michelle, and keep up the GREAT work!!!!!!!

sdboyer’s picture

Completely and patently ridiculous and wrong. Michelle was the first person I EVER directly spoke to in the community, about a year ago now. She was the one I singled out to talk to first primarily BECAUSE I had read through many of her posts and drew the conclusion she'd be receptive. And, um. I was right. You're not. Not only is she a skilled developer, but she's one of the most honest, even self-effacing people that I've met in the community when it comes to those skills and her knowledge base. On those occasions when she does respond in a less than polite way, my experience has been because someone has violated a cardinal rule of respect for devs in the issue queue. For me, those are:

- Assuming/implying the dev you're writing to is stupid.
- Not bothering to search for duplicate issues/posts/whatever.
- Kicking off a new thread with an accusatory tone. Just be respectful. Even a simple "I'm sorry, I'm sure this is somewhere else but I couldn't find it" is all it takes to earn pleasantries and patience from me, often even if the other two principles have been violated.

I have never once seen a post where Michelle has been anything but polite and patient up to the point where one of the above was violated. She's certainly better than I am about it.

DamienMcKenna’s picture

Another thumbs up for Michelle for all the hard work she's put in over the years to making Drupal a better CMS.

Damien McKenna | Mediacurrent

patchak’s picture

Michelle helped me several times to understand basic drupal principles and more advanced stuff as well. She was always really patient with my questions and very "available" in general to have a discussion about drupal, etc.

I really like and respect you Michelle! Don't take the original poster's comments too hard on yourself!!!!


Jacine’s picture

These kinds of posts never cease to amaze me.

If you want the Drupal community as a whole to be "more understanding, and a little more kind" writing a post flaming one of the nicest and most helpful people in the community isn't exactly the best way to go about it.

- Michelle learned Drupal on her own time
- Michelle contributed her modules on her own time
- Michelle spends hours on end helping new and existing Drupal users in IRC and in her issue queue on her own time.

I could go on... But the point is that just because you may not have gotten the answer you wanted, or you are frustrated with your own grasp on Drupal ATM, that doesn't give you cause to write a post like this.

For one minute, if you could put yourself in any maintainers shoes, I'll bet you wouldn't like the constant attacks and demands some people endure for sharing their work with the community, especially when you spend so much of your personal time supporting the community in the issue queue.

For the record, "No question is a dumb question," unless the answer to it is clearly already sitting in the issue queue, the Read Me file, or even better on the project's page, and the person asking the question just refuses to read it, or search the issue queue in an attempt to find the answer themselves. Expecting a maintainer to do this, with a smile, is the definition of hand-holding as far as I'm concerned. So please keep that in mind before flaming someone you may actually need help from in the future.

siliconmeadow’s picture

Before the stats, I'd like to say this:
I'm a sporadic IRC user and have got some great ideas from this site called over the past 2-3 years since starting with Drupal. I finally made the connection that michelle on IRC is the owner of This posting from Red Wing doesn't seem to match my experience, and seems completely out of character from my single-numpty-drupal anecdotal perspective.

Therefore, I'm not convinced it would be worth anyone's time to go through (here come the stats):

  1. Over 3800 postings of docs pages/comments, issues/issue responses, forum postings/responses;
  2. nearly 3600 commits to three projects

to find that Michelle's general demeanour is condescending and downright discouraging to this community.

I've not always found things were immediately apparent when working with Drupal, but I've found the same thing with every other web technology I've worked with over the past 14 years. You reap what you sow, Red Wing. If I were you, I'd suggest asking the question for the problem you are having, instead of anticipating any of us are going to hurt your feelings. If someone says something snide to you assume it's THEIR problem, not yours. You simply needed something explained to you. Ask again.

It's so much more efficient than attacking someone before you've ever even given them the chance to help!

lut4rp’s picture

Apart from the very obvious comments above, I'd like to add another.

The amount of contribution she's done to the community is *really* priceless considering the fact that she is also a mother! We all totally realize what one hell of a tiring job it is being a parent. If this is what she can do being a mum, I shudder to think what would have happened if she wasn't one. Competition to Dries, perhaps =P

PS - /me hopes his mum isn't reading this.

ksenzee’s picture

Michelle is one of the pillars of the Drupal community. The forums are a much better, more useful, and yes, kinder and friendlier place because of her contributions. And as a fellow mom, I know how precious her free time must be. I personally am very glad she's chosen to spend some of that time making Drupal a better place.

~ Katherine

brenda003’s picture

Wow. Michelle has been a great contributor to the community and despite her frazzled schedule puts a ton of time into building and maintaining some very popular modules, helping out with d.o webmaster things, providing support and quite possibly a whole lot more than I'm not even aware of.

It's people like her that really bring the Drupal community forward with their contributions.

einsteinsboi’s picture

I don't know Michelle very well, since I am relatively new to the Drupal community, but I'm trying to get involved as quickly and POSITIVELY as I can, which I feel is the best and only way to join a community. I won't reiterate what everyone here has said, except one thing... you created an account just to say something negative??? WTF???

Like I said, I don't know Michelle, but going from what everyone here has said about her, it sounds like you're way off mark, or maybe just very sensitive.

Even if she's everything you say she is, I think you have to learn to separate personality from content, and realize that we're all wired differently, and what sounds condescending and belittling to you may be an earnest attempt to deal with the barrage of help requests that I'm sure these wonderful contributors and module developers are attacked with everyday. The internet can be a very impersonal space, and attributing attitudes when you can't read someone's body language and facial expression to form the whole picture is just going to alienate you real fast from the community. I've been called a moron in the most loving way and enjoyed it only because I could read the other person's facial expression and body language and knew she meant it not to demean but because she was exasperated by something I did. In other words, you can't form context on the internet enough to make such a snap negative judgment of someone.

Chill out! Relax. This is a community, and it's what we, yes WE, including you, make it. Shrug off any slights and focus on learning and sharing. Don't make it personal, at least not in this way.

Michelle, Rock ON!! You are obviously much appreciated in the Drupal Community. Don't let Red Wing's comments discourage you from giving help, I'm sure that is not Red's intention at all.

Right Red Wing?

Junro’s picture

How dare you say things like this!
Michelle helps people as many times as she can!
Develloppers can't help every body.
We're so lucky that developpers helping us directly with Drupal.

You're such a coward to not using your real name...

It's with guys like you that developpers quit Drupal! It's such hard work and responsability for them. AND most of them work for free!!

Michelle has always give me some support.

Without her (and others of course), I will be in the big shit!

It's a shame that people like you don't understand that! Just because she didn't answer you to your issue... not yet....

@ Michelle: Thanks for all your fabulous work!

hyrcan’s picture

I don't really know Michelle, I dont' know if I every asked them or got an answer from them... but this post make me wish I could tag it as: *lame* because this smacks of someone not getting their question answered they wanted it to be, so now they post something that tries to make them look bad or is a pitiful attempt to hurt the other person's feeling in a public forum.

Hmm... maybe not a *lame* tag... it should have an option to tag as *will not fix - author is a troll*

Tyler Vann’s picture

Michelle Is The Cat's Meow!
And I don't even like cats all that much!

I see her in #drupal-support with me, helping people out.
And there have been times she helped me out as well.

justageek’s picture

Another reason Michelle is awesome is because she's a mom that writes code.

'nuff said.

kyle_mathews’s picture

Funny visual analogies come to my mind sometimes.

I heard about this on twitter from Webchick a bit ago and reading through these posts it felt like Red Wing was an bacteria attacking the Drupal organism and Webchick was the chief white blood cell calling other white blood cells to swarm and defend the body -- and swarm they did :)

So to add my two cents -- boo to flamers and yeah to helpful people like Michelle.

BTW, to Red Wing (whoever you are) we Drupal people cheerfully forgive reformed flamers so please do come back whenever you've gotten off your angry high horse.

Michelle’s picture

I am just in awe of the support on this thread! I love the Drupal community!

I've been feeling very burnt out lately. I've got support requests coming at me from all different directions: issue queues, irc, email, even posts on my websites. Many of them are along the lines of "I want to do something totally custom with your module, tell me how to do it". I felt awful turning off my contact tab the other day but I feel even worse ignoring the never ending emails and I just don't have time to help everyone. I wish I could, but I can't. I'm a full time mom with limited computer time and I spend so much of it helping other people with their sites that my own sits neglected. And then a post like this comes along and I was just in shock that someone would create an account just to hurt me. But then you all piled on the love and made me feel so much better. So maybe I should thank Red Wing for making me realize how much the community really does care.

I won't claim to always be as perky as folks like Webchick and Addison who amaze me with their never tiring cheerfulness but I do remember what it was like to be new and there's plenty I still need help with. I strive to write my documentation clearly so that everyone can understand it, even new folks. But when people don't bother to read what I wrote or take any time of their own to try and figure things out, yeah, I get a bit snippy. Drupal is not easy. Maybe some day you'll be able to push a button and get the site of your dreams but, for now, it takes real work. If you can't be bothered to even read what is clearly stated on the project page, you can expect a terse (though I at least try for polite) response. I only have so much time. I can't hold everyone's hand every step of the way.

Thanks again to everyone who responded. You are an awesome community!


justageek’s picture

Is there a central place where module maintainers can post "I need help with this", when and if they want to ask for help in a formal, ongoing support type role?

I'd like to help out but not sure how to best do so, I dont' have a patch in mind, but I'd be happy to help man questions about specific modules.

Michelle’s picture

I think probably most people out there would be tickled to have someone help out in the queue. I try to keep on top of mine but I can get behind and it's always nice to get there and find out someone else has already answered the question. Very rare, though. LOL! So that's a place you could help out anyone. Read the global tracker and see if there's any questions you can answer, no matter who's queue it's in.


webchick’s picture

I've written up some (very) basic instructions on how to help with issue queues at Other people, feel free to edit as you see fit. This is one of the very best ways to help out in the Drupal community.

Another great way to help is by writing up / correcting documentation for a module. This is particularly nice to do when you're still learning because mistakes and omissions are more obvious to you.

sun’s picture

Nice one. Could we link to that page from somewhere obvious? For example, display a message that links to that page when a user creates a feature or support request in any issue queue?

I often have the feeling that users do not know how they could contribute when "requesting something", or that they even think that "Drupal" is some kind of a "vendor" that does each and everything without having to get involved. :(

Daniel 'sun' Kudwien

silverwing’s picture

That YOU and YOUR FAMILY always come first. Don't ever feel bad about putting Drupal stuff on the back burner to take care of what's most important to you. (And, really, we all need a mental holiday every once in a while.)

~silverwing - MIchelle fan

Michelle’s picture

But it's hard. I was horribly sick for most last week and barely touched the computer. When I did, there I was in my queues. LOL! I hope my answers weren't too nonsensical then. It's hard to put something on the back burner when you know there are thousands of people waiting on what you're working on.


laura s’s picture

Everyone else said it, but I wanted to sound off as well. Michelle is tops.

That doesn't mean certain people are above reproach, but anonymous attacks from brand spanking new accounts have no credibility.

_____ ____ ___ __ _ _
Laura Scott :: design » blog » tweet

VM’s picture


These types of users, like red wing, always tend to single out one individual at any given time. There was a time it was MerlinofChaos, then I recall when I first came to this community it was Sepeck, then it was me, now it's michele. I'm sure there were others weaved in before, during and some will certainly come after.

I'm always bewildered by the users who post these passive aggressive type posts pointing the finger at someone else when the reality is the writer is usually the one who needs thicker skin.

seutje’s picture

awesome is an understatement when talking about Michelle

I'm at least twice as "short tempered" as she is, but she's helped me countless times so I try to take some weight off her shoulders, even though I suck at it :(

go Michelle! and remember: stock up on them cans of chicken soup!!

sarah_p’s picture

Even though Michelle has never helped me personally in IRC, just knowing that it is possible to be a mom and do Drupal helped me make the transition. Her enthusiasm for her kids and Drupal and how she balances all of that out was inspirational to me partnering with mikey_p on Shomeya, as well as pursuing my other creative endeavors. Thanks Michelle!

mikejoconnor’s picture

I remember how much I struggled when I first started learning Drupal. Michelle was one of the people who was always there, and willing to help. Without Michelle, I would not have made it over the Drupal learning curve.


Thank you Michelle, for all your hard work, dedication to the community, and helping me learn Drupal.

kiamlaluno’s picture

My sense of time must be broken; I thought it was still February, but it seems it's already April Fool's Day.
If that is the case, I missed so many things.

I guess they are right to be worried of Earth's pollution: we can all see the effect on the people. :-)

Kiam la luno renkontas la sunon

einsteinsboi’s picture

I think this has to qualify as the best reply on here... gotta go check the calendar, it MIGHT just be April 1!

kiamlaluno’s picture

If they didn't change date, Fool's Day should be April 1 (like einsteinsboi correctly reported).

Kiam la luno renkontas la sunon

mikl’s picture

I'd also like to thank you, Michelle, for your hard work to create some of the most complex and useful Drupal modules. I wish Drupal had more people like you :)

WorldFallz’s picture

holy smokes-- i'm away from the forums for one day and this gets past me!

I know its been said over and over in this thread, but I simply can't not say it myself:

Michelle Rocks!!!

@Red Wing: you really must be new to make such a post and have no clue what you were stepping into. Whatever pissed you off-- get over it. And next time you have something to say, have the courage to say it with your real account or don't say it all.

MacRonin’s picture

OK, I've taken a quick look at all the posts, and I think I'm safe in declaring that the Drupal community thinks "Michelle is an awesome friendly kind individual!!"

quicksketch’s picture

I'm late to this party, but it's never too late to say: Michelle is most definitely awesome. One of the most helpful members of the whole community. Thanks Michelle and rock on!

silvesterd’s picture

Read this before: being a german, i am not able to read between english lines. Please think about this whilst trying to understand my comment.

At my first visit in Planet Drupal i've read some of Michelle's text about someone who seems to be dumb enough to register just to attack her, and some explanations about feelings and anger and hurt and so on. I never want to be unkind, but i got the impression of soap opera.
Then i got to the post of Red Wing, who is considered guilty. He let out his slight frustration about (some, most? what is the count?) Michelles replies to questions from "normal" users. Some good part in the text is about the good quality of her coded modules, and i can find friendly words, he tried to be kind.

Read: "Before I explain my problem I must say that I love your modules APK and AF. I believe they have much potential as you progress them through D6, which I read in your forum asking for suggestions and what will encourage people to use them."
And:"Thank You Kindly"

So this is my opinion:

1. i am not sure, if this forum is the right place to get personal and talk about talking. May be. I do not know.
2. The post of Red Wing was not meant to be hurting, in my understanding. Please tell me, where my text-understanding could get better.
so i can hardly understand why Michelle should see this text as "very, very hurting". Where is the line between "critics" (allowed?) and "attack", is there any on planet drupal?
3. Only by reading this off off off topic thread (or is planet drupal meant for this? then: sorry), i got to know Michelle's Modules, as mentioned in the second post. They are interesting, with good documentation and seem very well mantained. Thanks for that aspect.
3. Why this flood of Michelle-praising and get Red Wing stoned? Sure, he registered just to be able to write this opinion, and maybe he didn't understand everything right, misbehaved on one edge, but now you kicked him far away. Is that an open community?
And Michelle, you don't need that, right? The people here love you, that's fine, enjoy it. But i wonder about the context.

At least let me tell you a secret. i wrote some angry posts about my frustration, trying to get e.g. Gallery2 working. I didn't think about the fact, that someone coded them for free, and that my problems need solution, not more. No one kicked me, and i understand more of the drupal-community with every visit.

On the other hand, there should be room for sentences like: "some of the drupal modules are a waste of time, people should cooperate more, instead of demonstrating her power of coding modules, useful or not, day and night." Possible or not?
Get this clearly: i do not mention here any module written by Michelle.
I am not writing here to fight at someone's side. I hope, no one does that.

And now i think: isn't this post a big waste of time? Tell me ;-)


webchick’s picture

If the person had e-mailed Michelle privately (or private messaged on IRC or whatever), and said, "Hey, you really hurt my feelings when you said $blah in $this_post," we wouldn't have a problem. In fact, Michelle probably would've been horrified to have done so and would've apologized to this person. This is how a reasonable person would normally deal with situations like this.

Instead, this person registered a fake account, posted to a public forum for the world to see, and then (oh, the irony) proceeded to give her a lecture on how to properly behave. This is not constructive. This is trolling.

Public criticism is fine if it is toward a general problem. "Gallery2 module is really frustrating to configure and install." Cool (though much better if these complaints are accompanied by bug reports in the issue so they can be fixed). "It's really hard to find Drupal modules that meet my needs because there are so many duplicates." Also cool (though better if these complaints are accompanied by a detailed description of what you tried to find and couldn't). But when public criticism turns toward an individual, then it just becomes spiteful and hurtful and not constructive at all.

Posts like this can destroy a person. Michelle said as much herself at her post about it. They can lead people to to believe that all of their effort is for nothing; that no one cares about the blood, sweat, and tears they pour into something they're really passionate about; that their presence in the community does more harm than good, both to themselves and others.

It was therefore critically important to show Michelle that Red Wing's words were *not* typical of what the vast majority of the Drupal community feels. And where better to do that than on a public forum? :)

Hope that helps explain.

WorldFallz’s picture

zuerst, willkommen Deutscher! ;-)

And Michelle, you don't need that, right? The people here love you, that's fine, enjoy it. But i wonder about the context.

I'm confused by your post-- You wonder about the context of the posts that came out supporting Michelle but you don't wonder about the context of someone registering an account just to attack an individual who contributes thousands of hours of effort for free?

2. The post of Red Wing was not meant to be hurting, in my understanding. Please tell me, where my text-understanding could get better.

You don't need language skills to discern this-- it's obvious from the behavior of the op. Had the post not been hurtful or unacceptable in some way, why the need to register a new account? Why not just respond in the thread that spurred the supposed need to make this post (using your real account)? It happens quite frequently. Misunderstandings get cleared up, people apologize or not, and life goes on. By posting 'anonymously' the OP prevents anyone from checking their participation history-- checking their tracker and trying to find the origins of the argument.

My guess would be the op is one of those drupal users that never help anyone else, expend little to no effort to help themselves, including reading documentation (which Michelle provides a great deal of, more than most), and get irritated when contributors prefer to allocate their precious time contributing rather than solving their problem for them for free (and immediately of course).

Moreover-- there are very few absolutes in this world. Particularly with open source and in forum communication. Aside from the backhanded anonymity of the post, my troll alarm always goes off whenever I see someone posting something like "almost every post you have written". Almost every? not likely.

Nope, sorry silversterd, this was cowardly, useless, hurtful, and trolling-- pure and simple. The positive responses were not only in context-- they were necessary.

sepeck’s picture

I stopped contributing for several months because of posts that were direct personal attacks. The initial post is an anonymous personal attack that is unnecessary and hurtful. Having been the recipient of several such attacks, after a time, you just stop contributing.

That is not the action of a person who wishes to participate in a community (which has agreements/disagreements, likes and dislikes) but someone who wishes to hide and throw rocks at people and still benefit for free from the work of others.

If this person truly follows this

I personally refuse to ask you a question

then good. They should have stopped there or had an offline discussion. They have no track record of contributions and they start with a personal attack. They could have used a different module or project, but no, they felt the need to register and issue a direct personal attack. This action is strongly discouraged because all it does is drive away people who contribute.

-Steven Peck
Test site, always start with a test site.
Drupal Best Practices Guide

jwuk’s picture

Hi Frank,

2. The post of Red Wing was not meant to be hurting, in my understanding. Please tell me, where my text-understanding could get better. so i can hardly understand why Michelle should see this text as "very, very hurting".

I agree that's it's possible that Red Wing may not have intended to be hurtful. I saw his post as thoughtless and inconsiderate, rather than deliberately cruel. I also think it's unproductive of people to call him a troll (i.e. deliberately creating havoc and harm) -- for someone to post as he did that person is himself hurting in some way, either physical or mental. That's why I (half-)jokingly said I hope his toothache will get better -- I meant it as an allegory.

You can't understand why Michelle might see it as very hurtful? Is she a robot then? Few of us have such self-confidence that we can take strong criticism lightly. Actually, introspecting, personally I find it easier to accept criticism when it's justified and I can do something to improve as a result. Whereas unjustified criticism tends to send me down the path of "How could you possibly think that of me, I'm horrified you could see me in such a way, blah blah blah, grrrrrrr!".

There's no need to knock RedWing for his actions, he'll probably never post again under that alias. He's probably been to the dentist today, is feeling much better and will reregister as LighterShadeOfPinkWing! :)

Whereas Michelle is high profile and has no such option. And clearly she doesn't need such an option... "We Heart Michelle!" bumper stickers will be on sale in the foyer shortly! :) Brilliant! :)

WorldFallz’s picture

I respectfully disagree-- the very act of registering for a new account to post 'anonymously' demonstrates that the op knew ahead of time that the post was going to be hurtful and/or unsavory in some way-- otherwise why not just post in your own name in whatever thread it was that spawned these feelings?

There's no need to knock RedWing for his actions, he'll probably never post again under that alias.

You're not the first to post this sentiment so i'm not directing my response solely to you-- but i'm absolutely stumped by this thought.

No need to knock red wing? Someone who registers a new account to cowardly and anonymously criticize someone else? The responses are inappropriate but the original post is ok? Sorry, I just don't get where this is coming from. At the very least, anonymous or not, if you criticize someone you have to be prepared to be criticized back. Doing it anonymously is even more unfair-- Michelle's tracker is here for everyone to examine-- 'red wing's is not.

let's hope s/he doesn't post again-- no one needs this kind of 'contribution'.

jwuk’s picture

It's not productive, let's keep the glass half full, not half empty.

Where did I (or anybody) say the original post is ok? But gathering a lynch mob wouldn't be useful, it's playing the same game that RedWing started. If he doesn't already wish time travel could let him roll back his action, then beating him to a pulp isn't going to help.

I've just read Michelle's blog. If this thread hasn't shown RedWing anything, perhaps that blog will be an eyeopener.

Time to go read an issue queue or something.

wmostrey’s picture

Michelle is the one that introduced me to customizing Drupal with the first incarnation of her famous Advanced Profile tutorial many years ago. Her help on irc on the subject helped me get past the "I suck" threshold. She's one of people that inspire and thrive me (and probably doesn't know it).

Michelle, you absolutely rock.

toemaz’s picture

I've only had some short conversations with Michelle. Still they were long enough to understand how passionate Michelle is about Drupal and willing to support the Drupal community in places where nobody else does. I'll be glad to meet her at DrupalCon and tell her in person how much her efforts are appreciated.

Thanks Michelle and see you soon ;-)

Robert Castelo’s picture

Odds are that if you make enough posts, no matter how friendly and helpful they are intended to be, someone somewhere will always misinterpret and take exception to at least one of them.

With the incredible amount of help you've given people I'm surprised you've had so few detractors, must be the quality of the posts.

Hope this doesn't get you down for too long, keep being amazing!

Drupal Specialists: Consulting, Development & Training

Robert Castelo, CTO
Code Positive
London, United Kingdom

JohnForsythe’s picture

I've known Michelle to be kind, helpful, fair-handed, and thoughtful. She's one of the good guys :)

Michelle’s picture

This post has been amazing and has really made me feel so much better but I want to point out that I'm not the only one that helps out around here. There are thousands of volunteers giving their time every day. Some aren't as visible, some are more so. But everyone that takes a few minutes to help someone else, whether answering a question, writing a bit of code, updating a handbook page, or any other of the many ways to contribute is valuable to the community. So all of you out there, help yourself to a big scoopful of the love in this post. Without the community, Drupal would just be some code. With the community, we can do amazing things.

And to you new folks, just starting out, keep at it. Drupal can be intimidating. There's lots to learn and at times it may seem overwhelming. It took me over two years before I tried to write a module. But I kept at it. If I didn't know how to do something, I kept digging at it until I figured it out. And you will, too. And, as you do, don't forget about those a step behind you. You may not think you know much but you know more than them. Everyone can help someone that knows less than them. If I helped you, the best thanks is to help someone else. Keep passing it along.


einsteinsboi’s picture

Right on!!

VM’s picture

^5 the above is Michelle in a nutchelle. (typo intended)


echoman74’s picture

That you are truly a respectable woman.
I personally never really spoke with you maybe a few times to ask about what i should use to create a social network and you replied with very few words that had opened my eyes and have explored beyond...Though as a newbie to Drupal, it can be extremely stressful and brainstorming at times to figure where something goes how it's used and what to do with it.
For example getid3 took me nearly 4 -6 hours to get it right because the developer of that module gave very few details to instruct even the newest of newbies to understand. Not everyone knows what a root folder is or php.ini etc.
Not everyone is a coder nor do they know php or sql etc. I thank you for giving the effort in fair instructions. Because i feel you care about you modules and those who use them.I have noticed many people in threads that show utter rudeness and even have a had a few myself as you may see some of my post. This is not preschool and people really need to learn respect for each other.

We are aiming for the same goals in creating a website we all have our fashions, style and creative imagination. But sometimes have a great big deal of understanding things.Which as i said can be very frustrating.So now i say this as a community we should help one another for even the newest of members and not jump on the bandwagon of insults. Better instructions with most of the easiest of things, a little more detail to where something is located and more helpful.There are 2 sides to every coin
and i think people can not see that one side and try to understand both sides.

Please excuse me if i went a bit off topic i do that sometimes,lol. But this is a thank you for Michelle in being a nice respectable woman and wish you greatness.

thank you.

VM’s picture

There in lies part of the problem.

After that 4 - 6 hours did you write a doc up for the handbook? or for the developer or maintainer to add to the readme.txt file?

It's been said numerous times that developers have a hard time assuming what a newcomer needs to know. More often than not developers who've gone out of their way to produce a tremendous amount of documentation are told " the docs are too hard " I just want to know how to do X.

New users can/should help with documentation, the door is open for those users to do so. YOU are in the best postion as a new user to write documentation for new users because you made it thorugh the difficulties and are in a better position to refine them for new users who may have trouble because point A wasn't clear enough and so on.

New users have expectations of developers and developers have expectations of users whether they are new or not. Demanding those expectations be fulfilled is where the line can be crossed and patience gets lost.

Is it so wrong of a developer to expect some help from users of the modules ?
If a module has 1000 users, and each user took the time to write one sentence by way of a tutorial, that would help the documentation grow and stay current. The community is lucky to have 1 or 2 of those thousand and even then? It's said it isn't enough.

Drupal has come a long way with the philosophy of "if you have an itch scratch it". This is what keeps drupal moving along. This same philosophy is what can keep the documentation area growing, if most would employ it.

echoman74’s picture

Well if you show me a bit on how to write a document, I 'd be more than happy to. Where do i go? I didn't actually mean to put the getid3 module maintainer down, I was making an example. But i wouldn't mind helping new Drupalers, i feel it be fair to help out aswell. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

To be honest, I was going to write it i just had no idea as to where to go..

VM’s picture

click on the create content link in your navigation menu.
create a book page

your next question may be: Where do I put the document?

navigate with the drop down (you'll understand what drop down when you start to create a handbook page) to the contrib modules area and make your page a child of the getid3 module page. If there is no already create parent page make yours the parent. You do so by making it a child of the parent contributed modules.

If you need more help, contact me using the contact form in my profile.

I did not think, nor was my response to you because I felt you were putting any one down. I just wanted to point out that as new users, new comers, noobies, whatever title you want to take on, it's NEVER too early to contribute. ESPECIALLY when it comes to instructions directed at the new users. The experience you have as a new user is being new.

echoman74’s picture

Wow,Took about 2 hours to write that:) Yeah figured that's what you meant. I sent an email to you.
Very Misunderstood , I want to make sure i have it right before i click save:)

VM’s picture

I read your email and have to check into something with the documentation team. Hold on to your document and I will contact you by way of email tomorrow. I believe there is an issue floating around since the upgrade of to D6 that may have borked the book.module in some way. If so I will get a suggestion on where best to place your new documentation.

For the time being and so you don't lose the work you've done for the community. Create an issue in the webmasters issue queue. Link this comment to the end of your documentation in that queue so that other maintainers who will see your issue know what is going on and that I gave you this direction. I will look into the issue with the handbooks and get back to that issue.

use my contact form and send me a link to that issue you create, that has your new documentation, which will act as a reminder for me please as I likely won't get to it until tomorrow my time, EST.

our discussion here is taking away from the reversed intention of this thread. Let's keep the dialogue continuing through email and not continue to take away from the purity of this thread.

webchick’s picture

That's *awesome*! :D Hope to see many more documentation contributions from you, echoman! :D

echoman74’s picture

No problem,
As a musician I find it funny that i would help in media since music is my life.
Speak about karma,lol. I've tested the audio module which uses getid3(). Works beautifully I'd be happy to show a sample but my site is a current mess. For the meantime, I have a few minutes online because of my mother, who just had knee replacement surgery."Gotta help the mom's" as soon as i can get back to everyone i will. This might open doors for those who want to add media to their sites.

tsvenson’s picture

Thanks for all your hard work Michelle. Reading this thread, and especially your comments, has inspired me to "bite the bullet" and start giving more back to this wonderful community.

You may not think you know much but you know more than them. Everyone can help someone that knows less than them. If I helped you, the best thanks is to help someone else.

I have been contemplating how I could help out, but thought I was too new and didn't knew enough. That quote however got me to realise that I will be able to help out in some small part as there are people who are even newer than me that I actually will be able to help out.

So, thanks for giving me the kick in the behind to start helping out.

Michelle’s picture

Yep, every little bit helps. If you answer a simple question, that frees up a support person to answer a more complicated one, and that may free up a maintainer to code a bit more. We all need to work together, from the newest newbie to the salty old farts. :)


tsvenson’s picture

Well, it took a lot more time than I thought, but now my first contributed documentation page have been created, HowTo: Updating Drupal 6.x to newer minor version.

It took some time to read through all the guides about documentation and such, but they where easy to follow and hopefully my HowTo is up to scratch.

WorldFallz’s picture

Nice Job Edde42! Way to go... thanks for the great contribution. This is exactly the type of new user docs we need more of. Keep it up!

jwuk’s picture

Salty old farting newbie here! :) What a wonderful thread this has become! Many many thanks to Michelle and many others in d.o. like her.

Someone wrote:
"New users can/should help with documentation, the door is open for those users to do so..."

That's a good sentiment, it's often said, but I feel it oversimplifies. Sometimes, as Echoman has shown, it's possible. But all too often (for nobody's fault) it's like visiting a nuclear physics lab:

Good morning, I'm Dr. Brainy Scientist, welcome to our laboratory!

"Hi, I'd like to learn about nuclear physics"

"That's grand, ask me any question you want.

Er, I don't even know enough to phrase a question. :(

Yes, I agree we newbies can identify where we're having trouble. But piecing together better docs to fix that may be far beyond us. And there's another risk...

In the effort to explain things that are not obvious on day 1, a document may grow and grow until it becomes uselessly large. Writing with clarity AND brevity is a rare skill. That's why in the commercial world tech authors are needed.

All that said, I don't want to discourage any new user from trying. I just want to point out that more experienced users shouldn't feel we're failing to pull what weight we can. Personally I try to contribute in very small ways, doing tedious tasks that would be a timewaste for others, such as fixing spelling and grammar. Kind of the equivalent of cleaning the toilets, but somebody has to do it.

WorldFallz’s picture

I just want to point out that more experienced users shouldn't feel we're failing to pull what weight we can.

I would say that's probably true for a number of users. However, I spend a significant amount of time providing support in the forums and it's my experience that these type of narcissistic, judgmental, self-serving, woe-as-me, proselytizing, complaining posts invariably come from users who's tracker demonstrates a complete lack of any effort whatsoever contributing-- even to the point of not answering a single question for someone else. Going to the trouble of registering a fake account merely serves to reinforce that suspicion since there will be no tracker to review.

tsvenson’s picture

What I think is common among newbies is that it takes time to get over the threshold. Until then our focus is to find answers to our own questions and problems. Taking time to also browse forums and issues to see if there is anything we can help someone else with is like finding the needle in the haystack. We simply aren't experienced enough to find much we can help with so we will spend most of the time in search of nothing.

What I do though is that if I find a solution to a problem I have posted about I at least add a comment about it so others can benefit from it as well. So far I know this has helped a few others, even some with much more experience than me.

Another thing is that it takes quite a bit of time to just get used to the structure of, including learning where to look to find what I need.

I am starting to close in on that threshold now and thus able to give back more and more.

Personally I am really looking forward to when the redesign of is done. I have looked over the mockup and it will make life easier for everyone, especially new Drupal users.

VM’s picture

Writing with clarity AND brevity is a rare skill

I agree 100%. On that same note, just because someone can code with php and knows enough about drupal's apis to build those modules, doesn't inherently make them a skillful writer of words. Or able to cover every possible step by step by step by step, that new users would benefit from. It's difficult to step outside of ones experience level and write documentation in any arena. Add to that the flexibility of drupal and the ability to do the same thing in multiple ways, it can be a bit overwhelming trying to work into documentation every possibility.

I direct your attention to the drupal cookbook. There was a time when NancyDru was a new user, who, like many, thought the documentation was lacking in areas. She took it upon herself as a new user to write the drupal cookbook which is a pretty extensive resource. It was a large undertaking for one person but she did it.

My point, which may not have come across clearly enough, is to take the initiative and try to make it better. Note I said try .... Many of us who support the forums on d.o. are happy to answer any questions any user has. Including those questions that are based on how to create better documentation for the entire community. Even if new users were to take the time to explain, in detail, where things are vauge so they can be cleaned up or written with more clarity. Often I'll read something and completely understand the document while someone else may not. It could be a single sentence that either there or not there that could make all the difference in the world to someone where documentation is concerned.

I certainly wasn't trying to put new users down. Merely stating that they too, can help. I believe there is quite a bit of energy with new users that if harnessed correctly can produce documents that are new user friendly and without assumptions typically made during the documentation writing by more experienced users because something is solidified in their processes that isn't in new comers.

David Naian’s picture

Even I'm new to this, I can just praise all the hard work, contribution and support @Michelle deliver during a long time to the Drupal Community.
Mr. Red Wing should take a deeper look at his personal frustrations and disabiliy to find what he is looking for. Please don't take my statement personally. There are many other deeper and hidden reasons because it's some how difficolt to understand and find the right and clear documentation for module implementation and installation on, surely not because of @Michelle.


dddave’s picture

From my personal experience I can only say that Michelle is super. Her modules helped me a lot and her work in her issue queues is more than special.
If you take into account her personal situation it is outstanding.
I am a fan!

rpfilomeno’s picture

First of all this is my first post in d.o forum -- I think so, since its been a while I was away.

Now for my 2 cents worth:

I haven't heard about Michelle until now so I tried to read about her and thought... She's the person I wanted to be but I'm not, she became my instant role model.

I have been using Drupal for 5 years on and off work and saved me and my company a lot of times but I admit I hardly contributed back directly to the community enough. I tried to contribute modules before but its available outside the d.o's repository. I find it very hard to find free time between work and family so I can contribute something back -- but here is Michelle who is probably a lot busier than I am and she was able to do all this things. Wow.

Last year I decided its really time to put my best effort to give something back so I joined SoC as a mentor. For the first time I felt I partly paid my debt of gratitude to d.o. I always recommends Drupal to client's and friends and not one said regretted using it. This year I'm joining SoC again and will do so for the rest of my life. I owe it to Drupal, to people like Michelle, to you guys.

If Michelle did ever made an offensive remark I have not found one on the archive as I'm reading her past post now. I also asked myself if I was on her position answering some of the queries then I would have bashed out RTFM right away -- not really my one of my strong points that's why I really admire her dedication helping others.

To Red Wing: I'm actually like you, even worst. I'm a person who would bash on people and companies online when I stumble upon them while waking on the wrong side of the bed and detect the slightest hint of stupidity or arrogance (just check out my posts outside d.o). However with d.o -- I'm all hands down. You see, because this post is in d.o. I won't even bash you (not here) -- that's how much I respect this community.

More power to d.o. and Michelle!

rpfilomeno’s picture

Have you even wrote the maintainer thank you after downloading the module he/she contributed? Or only when you encountered a problem then you have to post one in the issue tracker?

Not only for module contributors but also those who helped a lot of us make our first step into Drupal. For people like Michelle who answered our newbie questions, those who contributed in d.o. handbook that saved day when you just can't figure out how to do things.

While working in an open source, its sometimes easy to forget to say thank you. We think that the usage statistics is enough to say that. That's why some maintainers might feel under appreciated. When a friend treats us free beers we say thank you, Open source is "free as a beer" so when we use them its like the maintainer just offered you a free beer and its just nice to say thanks -- even if its just for a day.

Michelle’s picture

I'm guilty of forgetting to say thanks as well. I use over 100 modules and I've only thanked a handful of maintainers. I need to make a point of doing that more.


jimmyg164’s picture

Got to add my two cents

Over the last two years i have been playing with Drupal, and the work you have done has helped a great deal

You are cool and helpful in my book,

There are always those who throw stones but they are a minority

Lots of love and hugs to you and your family

MGParisi’s picture

I had this big written response to this post...
But I realized that it was all pointless, and that it all comes down to is this...

Forget about the original poster... Without you, I probably would not be using Drupal! (I would be using Joomla... /me shudders at the idea)
Michelle, you are one of the best (if not THE best) person to work with in Drupal's community.
I consider you as a good friend.
Contact me anytime you need help with anything. I will always do my best and go way out of my way to help you...

3duardo’s picture

I've asked Michelle an inane newbie question or two and never felt that I was talked down to!

Her modules have been rockin' my website since 2 Feb 2009

Michelle, ma belle, these are words that go together well, my Michelle


seutje’s picture

When I started out with drupal, I used to sit around in IRC, not asking anything, not saying anything, but just reading other people's problem and then reading the answers they were given and I must say I learned a lot from Michelle this way. Most of the problems and solutions I saw passing by will probably never be of use to me in an actual project, but it wasn't long until I started getting the feeling of "hey... I know the answer to this, Michelle explained it a week or 2 ago..."

So basically, my point is: while helping other people on IRC, know that there's sneaky newbies lurking in the dark and absorbing all the information being tossed around, and before you know it, they'll be (trying) to answer questions as well :)

Vako’s picture

Red Wing, I have to thank you for introducing me to a great person - Michelle!
I haven't met anyone getting so many praises by so many people in such a short time! Her husband and child must be very lucky to have her and the Drupal community is also fortunate to have someone like Michelle as a helping hand.

I have to admit I had tears in my eyes reading some of the posts in this thread praising Michelle and let us realize what a great person she is.

Read her response to this thread at:

...and thank you Michelle for being such a great help to this community and most probably to others as well. Kudos to you, keep-up the good work!

Michelle’s picture

All these praises are nice but I'm getting very self conscious. I'm not one who normally likes to be in the spotlight... Seriously, I appreciate it all, I really do, but there's no need to keep heaping on. :) There's plenty of people around here that do far more than I do. Go tell them how great they are. Spread the love around. :)


Vako’s picture

Believe me, as 'silently' as you were appreciated, all the others are also noticed, appreciated and praised perhaps privately.
Although we have to make a habit of showing our appreciation each time we get an individuals dedicate their time to help us either if there is a solution outcome or not.

Thank you

to all the Drupal developers, maintainers, project managers, support, contributors, community, users and all...

VM’s picture

cmon now, you know you want a national holiday and a street named after you : )

Michele Boulevard sounds good no? : )

Michelle’s picture

There are some crazy holidays out there. As long as it's a "Drupal" day and not a "Michelle" day. ;) I wouldn't be surprised if there's a street named after a Michelle somewhere. But not me. :P


leetamus’s picture

Everyone is slagging this guy for posting this, but in my opinion the poster was trying hard to be sensitive while saying it how they see it. You guys mock him for using a new account.. I wonder why he did that when clearly everyone would be fine with him afterwards if he had used his actual account.

I've spent literally thousands of hours helping people with action script on Flashkit and I will openly admit that I have off days where I might be short with the noobs and I don't think there's a thing wrong with a noob calling me on it. Why so sensitive Drupal? Sometimes the truth hurts a bit, but in the end it's in the best interest of the person bing criticized. I certainly don't want to stop providing my time to flashkit because someone calls me on my bad day!

Ironically I found this thread by clicking Michelle's name after reading a couple uptight responses and wondering who this person was.

IMO the only fault of the poster is that he didn't just message her rather than putting it out there for goofs like myself who feel the need to put in their two bits :)

Michelle’s picture

I've never claimed to be a saint. I have off days like everyone else. Though I tend to be terse due to lack of time more than outright rude due to intent. And if he'd sent me a private message complaining that I was too hard on him when he asked about something I would have apologized. But, by his own admission, he's never asked me anything. He's chosen to create an anonymous account to publically announce that almost every post I've written has been "condensending, and discouraging".

I think the posts here make it pretty clear that's not the case. :P

Anyway, I think this thread has gone on long enough. I really appreciate all those who have stood up for me. But we really don't need to keep bumping this up. I don't want people getting the idea that I'm some sort of "attention whore" because I certainly did not set out to get everyone heaping praise on me. LOL! I'd really love to step out of the spotlight now. As I said, there are a ton of people in this project that do far more than me. Feel free to go shower some love on them.

Thank you all for your support. You really made me feel better when I was feeling low and I'll never forget it.


David Naian’s picture

I agree fully with what you mind and what you feel.

I would suggest You and of course if the other Site Maintainers agree to close or block posting here.

I do suppose that with the new Redesign (I do not know when it's scheduled yet) a way to have a section where can be praised, aknowledged would be cool.

I think that we all want to acknowledge many Members of that contribute as coder, supporter, editors etc. and surely there are many.

tsvenson’s picture

What about a Drupal Hall of Fame?

Michelle’s picture

I'm not so sure a hall of fame is a good idea. The problem with putting certain people on a pedastal is that all the other people have the potential to feel left out. I'm already worried about that with this post. I hate to think of all the people out there who work just as hard or harder than me on Drupal wondering why I'm getting all this attention. :( That's why I keep trying to redirect it to make sure everyone gets the thanks they deserve. And I think that's what it comes down to. We don't need to single people out. We need to make a conscious effort to thank people for their contributions. That's something I need to work on as well. I know I haven't thanked the maintainers of the 100+ contributed modules I use.

How about a "thanking wall" or something. I hate to clutter up peoples' queues just to say thanks. But if there were a dedicated place where we could go and say "I just used module X and it really helped me out" that would be cool. It wouldn't need to be fancy... Maybe even just set up a thanking forum so there's no coding involved.


tsvenson’s picture

I know, I was sort of thinking in the same direction but decided to throw out the idea to see the reaction to it. On the other hand I think almost everyone in the community is mature enough not to be put down just because they where not "singled out".

Another way of doing it to create a set of Drupal Award categories and have an award ceremony at DrupalCon.

I believe doing this will have a lot more benefits than negatives, not only within the community, but also as a marketing tool and creating awareness for aspects of the community that otherwise is not so visible. There are a lot of people who do great things for us silently or do the things behind the scenes that for a majority never even realise is done.

If done right I think this could be a great thing.

Michelle’s picture

I don't think it has anything to do with maturity. How you handle the feeling is a mark of maturity, of course, but feeling put out because you are toiling away at something in obscurity and someone else is getting recognized for it is a natural reaction, I think. Anything that is going to put the spotlight on some people needs to take that into account lest we lose people over it.

So, yes, it could be a great thing if done right. But it definitely needs to be done right.


Vako’s picture

All good ideas!
How does Red Wing Award sound? ;) just kiddin'

seriously, the Thanking Wall is a great idea, people should be able to choose the name/module from a drop-down list and vote for it.
or in each module there should be a voting-link that will show-up in the Thanking Wall.

OK, now who will volunteer to this task? - Michelle perhaps?

VM’s picture

I'd venture a guess that anything of this nature would probably have to wait until after the redesign.

However, an issue for it can be created to truy and generate a focused recorded discussion.

Michelle’s picture

I'm already stretched too thin as it is. :( That's why I suggested simply making a forum for it to keep it simple with no custom coding needed. This is unlikely to happen if you need to find someone to code it. Everyone is already swamped.


David Naian’s picture


Drupal Wings Awards

Sound much better ;-)

edit: sorry typo mistake!

lastlion’s picture

I just want to pass on my thanks to Michelle for taking on some difficult development challenges, and creating some really wonderful modules. Reading through any of her posts\comments around forum module development for the last few years, that led to advanced forums module will show you someone who has dedicated tremendous amounts of time to admins of many skill levels. Her leadership on organizing improvements to the forum usability is something that needs applauded. I have been at drupal now for 3 years and consider myself a slightly below average admin with minimal development skills. I do it as a hobby and not as a job. I am thrilled and thankful for the help and guidance Michelle's posts, documentation, issue responses, and comments have provided me. I am even more thrilled that she donates her development time to provide to all Drupal users some wonderful modules at no cost.


Michelle’s picture

Drupal is a hobby for me as well. Let's hear it for the hobbyists. :)

Thanks for the kind words.


bcobin’s picture

I would like to add my voice to the choir singing Michelle's praises. She has been extraordinarily helpful to me and most generous with her time, not to mention her considerable coding talents.

Two words: Michelle ROCKS!

Michelle’s picture

Ok, folks, really I appreciate it but we don't need to keep bumping this up. :) You're gonna give me a swelled head. :P


zooki’s picture

It was Michelle's Modules that actually made me choose Drupal.. and it is sad that people can not have patience with her and her busy schedule.

In every community, there are going to be people with different levels of patience and some might not appreciate what people do, whilst others will.

I can say that on the whole, the vast majority of us really do appreciate all the hard work that goes into making these modules, and perhaps those who complain, are new comers, not really much into "drupal".

Thanks 1000,000x Michelle -

i hope you can come out of your "rest" :D re-energised and with the enthusiasm you had from before, to help and carry on the great stuff you have been doing. I also hope, we can help you in anyway we can.. We wont give up either. :)

Michelle’s picture

You're welcome. :)