It's broadly accepted among professional writers that the language used should be acceptable and comprehensible to the audience. This seems uncontentious.
Posting a straightforward change representing a relaxation of standards (which were not in any case being enforced) should also be uncontentious.
The commit message used, however, reveals implementation details of the change which are irrelevant to the stated aim, which is making the documentation clear and concise. Use of such language is certainly regrettable, since it carries with it the implication that the Python developer community has somehow been wilfully sanctioning "relics of white supremacy" up until the change was made.
There certainly is a place in tech for politics, as I have argued many times, and I am sure nobody wishes to continue to use language that might be offensive to readers. But I would suggest that the politics can safely be omitted from commit messages, since they can only properly be fully addressed in the conversation about the PR in advance. The wording of the commit message has the appearance (probably specious) of wanting to rub former misdeeds in the face of a largely innocent community, and that is the principal reason I found it distasteful and unnecessary.
Kind regards, Steve
PS: I also think there is still room for the PEP to remind writers that many readers of the documentation who graciously allow us to use English without complaint are using it as their second or even third language, and all writers should be sympathetic to their needs as a matter of professional courtesy.
On Sun, Jun 28, 2020 at 10:18 PM Paul Sokolovsky firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Shouldn't such feedback be also cross-posted to the python-dev mailing list? Also note the original pull request, https://github.com/python/peps/pull/1470, and differences of what was written in the pull request description and what went in the commit message.
On Sun, 28 Jun 2020 22:10:14 +0200 "Giampaolo Rodola'" email@example.com wrote:
Instead of requiring that comments be written in Strunk & White Standard
English, require instead that English-language comments be clear and easily understandable by other English speakers. This accomplishes the same goal without upholding relics of white supremacy. Many native English speakers do not use Standard English as their native dialect, so requiring conformation to Standard English centers whiteness in an inappropriate and unnecessary way, and can alienate and put up barriers for people of color and those whose native dialect of English is not Standard English. This change is a simple way to correct that while maintaining the original intent of the requirement.
This has nothing to do with making the wording "clear and understandable" (I agree on that). It's about, once again, bringing race-based politics into Python, and spreading hate towards a specific group of people: whites. Whether you're aware of it or not, there is a term for this: it's racism. I want to remind everyone that most of us here simply want to contribute code. We do it for free, and don't want to be involved in "this", because frankly it's disgusting. Doing something out of passion and for free, and at the same time seeing these sorts of things happening on a regular basis, looks and feels like an insult, and will only lead to people leaving this place.
On Fri, Jun 26, 2020 at 11:27 PM Keara Berlin firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Hi all, this is a very small change, but I thought I would field it here to see if anyone has suggestions or ideas. Instead of requiring that comments be written in Strunk & White Standard English, PEP-8 should require instead that English-language comments be clear and easily understandable by other English speakers. This accomplishes the same goal without alienating or putting up barriers for people (especially people of color) whose native dialect of English is not Standard English. This change is a simple way to correct that while maintaining the original intent of the requirement. This change may even make the requirement more clear to people who are not familiar with Strunk & White, since for programmers, the main relevant aspect of that standard is "be clear and concise;" simply saying that instead of referencing Strunk & White may communicate this more effectively. Here is the current line in PEP-8: "When writing English, follow Strunk and White." I propose changing this line to "When writing English, ensure that your comments are clear and easily understandable to other English speakers." _______________________________________________ Python-ideas mailing list -- email@example.com To unsubscribe send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org https://mail.python.org/mailman3/lists/python-ideas.python.org/ Message archived at
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