Believing Your Own Hype

Bashing competing closed-source products seems to be more widely accepted in the open source world, especially when those products are made by Microsoft. Personally, I deplore this tendency (though again, there’s nothing wrong with straightforward factual comparisons), not merely because it’s rude, but also because it’s dangerous for a project to start believing its own hype and thereby ignore the ways in which the competition may actually be superior.

— Karl Fogel, Producing Open Source Software

3 thoughts on “Believing Your Own Hype

  1. i like that quote..

    taking your (any) ideology too seriously never ends well..

    and firefox is a very good example of core values married with honest pragmatism..

  2. Yes, there are certainly those whose support for open-source is less about being a supporter, and more about being a platform for them to be anti-Microsoft (and more generally, anti-corporate). And so those people tend to be blind – anything that comes out of Microsoft is bad by definition, and not worth even looking at for ideas. Worse, people who do draw inspiration from Microsoft’s work are condemned as collaborators, as traitors to the cause.

    All in all, I much prefer the pragmatists who actually do most of the work.

  3. Yeah, more people in the Mozilla community should read that. The important part is to not believe your own hype and to always see the qualities competing products have and not just convince yourself that yours is unquestionably better. Because there are always going to be things other products do better and useful features other products have.

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