Jul 26 – 31, 2023
Europe/Riga timezone

Communication matters: a talk about how to talk online

Jul 26, 2023, 2:50 PM
40 Minute Presentation Community Building and Diversity


Allan Day (Red Hat)


Online communication is hard, and it's something that everyone who participates in open source faces challenges with. Yet, communication is also important, and there is evidence that communication in open source projects has significant consequences, particularly when it comes to attracting and retaining contributors.

The first part of this talk looks at the evidence around communication issues in open source projects, as well as what the impacts are.

The second part addresses how we as GNOME contributors can improve our communications. It draws on communications literature and training resources to provide a summary of recommended communications practice. In doing so, it addresses how to make newcomers welcome, how to avoid discrimination, how to disagree constructively, and how to handle disputes when they happen.

Author(s) Bio

Allan has been involved in the GNOME project for around 15 years, and is a member of the GNOME design team. He has previously served on the GNOME Foundation Board of Directors, and is employed by Red Hat. He lives in Sheffield, UK.

Pronouns He/Him

Primary author

Allan Day (Red Hat)

Presentation materials