Communities and Silos Revisited

Joe • May 31, 2017


"You can be a part of multiple communities..."

This is a hot topic for me, and I'm glad to hear Matt's opinion. I agree with everything Matt says. If you've not heard it yet go listen to this before continuing this post: back.

I've talked a lot about Laravel developers being in a silo just as Symfony, Zend, and other frameworks have these silos. This episode makes me fear that I've come across the wrong way to some and I want to clarify my intention and position regarding silos.

Matt makes the comment "...if you've ever gone HAM on someone..." in talking about developers who identify as WordPress developers or Laravel Developers "...because they should just be PHP developers...". This comment made me pause, because I've certainly told people they should identify as PHP developers instead of a specific framework developer. I've felt like "PHP" developers get a better experience than framework developers because they're not pigeon holed into a smaller portion of community, opportunities, conversations, etc.

Matt makes the great comparison to religious sects and denominations and he's spot on. I Don't know why this comparison made it click with me, but I get it now. If you want to identify as a specific framework developer: that's great. Specializing in a framework is no different than someone who specializes in anything else in a profession. My desire for framework developers to identify as language developers was rooted deeply in them being a part of a larger community. Not everyone wants that and there is nothing wrong with not wanting to be a part of a larger community. I'm in a very small guild in an online game despite there being much larger guilds that would be just as happy to have me. I'm happy just hanging out in my small guild, it suits me very well and I shouldn't have to join a larger guild if I Don't want to. If I've ever made anyone feel like I went "HAM" on them about being a framework developer: I'm sorry. I came off incredibly wrong.

Matt makes the comment: "Why Don't you participate in the larger PHP community?"

If you identify as a framework developer I want you to know I want you to be a part of the larger PHP community. More than just those of us that follow each other on Twitter, more than the speaker's circle at conferences, more than a mailing list. You are someone who is contributing to this amazing ecosystem even if you are only a user of a framework. I understand if you Don't want to be a part of a larger community but keep and eye on the larger community. Stay up to date on what's happening (if you care). You can lead a developer to a community but you can't make them interact with it.

" it in a nice way..."

I've probably been guilty of not doing it the right way. If I did this with you, know that I'm sorry.

Do what makes you happy and what helps you contribute meaningful changes to your clients and provides you with a long and bountiful career. If that is in the Laravel, Symfony, Ruby, or Python communities, god speed.

Thanks for reading.