Should the aux community have an offtopic?

A thought triggered by The Register article about Aux.

Sorry if this is getting too off topic

What good is an offtopic section actually?

I feel like it’s part of the reason the nixos community is (in my opinion) so toxic. It allows divisive topics that have nothing to do with the project to sow discord and gives too much rope for people to hang themselves with. It’s not all bad of course, but IMO a good place for offtopic discussion is everywhere else but the aux forums. There are enough offtopic outlets for the community (the fediverse, blog posts, reddit, facebook, …).

Does it need to be brought here?

Just look at the topic about the register linked above. I made a negative comment and so did others. We aren’t dogpiling, doxxing, or aggressive, but negative nonetheless. Are these the kind of vibes we want to allow to exist?

The offtopic place just seems like powderkeg where the WANCAIN (we are nice cause aux is nice) attitude can be abandoned to let out some negativity until it sparks.


I think the rest of the off topic category has been very positive, and I’m not sure where many of those posts could go. They seem largely like typical “icebreaker” things, which is nice, but probably doesn’t fit in general.

I wonder if we could rename the category rather than removing it entirely? I completely agree that NixOS’ offtopic channels can be rather poor, and would like to avoid that here.


I think it’s worth keeping. My “too off topic” comment was about that specific thread, not the entire section. If we try to restrict posts like these, we risk falling into toxic positivity where no criticism is allowed.

To Other’s point, nothing egregious or harmful came out of it. If it does get to that point, I’ve got no problem reporting those posts :hammer:


I dont think so. Like the introductions or the thread about mech keyboards.

Maybe a policy against circle-jerk stuff would be helpful, but Communities are best when members know each other as multidimensional humans and not just a faceless avatar that talks about coding issues. So I don’t think we should close the door on expressing positive stuff unrelated to aux.


I don’t really see the point in an off-topic. If its for casual discussion I think that’s probably better for something like the Matrix, rather than immortalized in a forum.


I agree whole-heartedly with all my humanness. I believe the more of our human aspects we accept, the more likely the place will feel nice.

Stuff being “Off-Topic” from technology IMO does not mean one can act in their worst way though. Kindness should be as mandatory as in all the other conversations.


I do feel some bit of agreement and also some disagreement. I’ll probably have to think about it more. Its nice to catch up on conversations people had, but also nice to not have personal stuff search-engine-indexed. (Disclaimer: I don’t like discord as a platform and dont think we should use it but) in discord communities, I do feel it has the right balance of being able to catch up on old stuff (even months old) while its not as-public as discourse.

In contrast, even if matrix has a lot of the same features, I feel like its often just treated as a “stream of consciousness” and stuff isnt organized in a way that can be browsed months later. When it doesnt require an account to browse either it feels a lot more public. Either I’m online near the same time as others, or the information is lost. At least thats been my general matrix experience.


Sure, but not everyone wants to use Matrix. Some people might only interact with the community over the forums, and it’s nice to have a catch-all board for things that don’t fit everywhere else


Actually I liked the thread here about the article. I got the Article in the Linuxgram channel and was so extremely confused about it, and also about how rude the Introduction of Aux and the Open Letter was in it. It was good to see that I am not alone with this feeling.
I did not perceive most negative comments as such, because they were still talking about very real parts in the article.


It was nice to read other people’s thought on the topic. Ultimately it’ll be up to the community, mods, and admins in the long run. At the moment, I feel like the consensus is to keep the offtopic category :slightly_smiling_face:


I don’t think there’s a reason to remove it at the moment, it catches some threads that are relevant to the community but wouldn’t have a good place for them otherwise. Perhaps it can stick around with a sort of “No Bummers” rule.

“No bummers” was introduced in MBMBAM early on. The brothers asked people to submit questions that avoided topics they considered “bummers,” such as politics or relationship advice. They didn’t deny the importance of such topics, but considering the diversity of individuals present at their shows, they did not want anyone to be alienated. So, they said “no bummers” — a concept captured in the podcast that has gotten the most vocal fanbase and media presence for these three, The Adventure Zone (TAZ).


Calling it the “no bummers offtopic” actually sounds really good to me!

I did also contemplate “Trivia”!