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Category: ethics

Atom Metrics enabled by default

Atom Metrics enabled by default

I made a post awhile back talking about different editors and IDEs and I talked about the merits of each.  Probably pretty spasticly and semi-randomly, but that is just how I roll.  Off the cuff.  I don’t have a lot of time as most people with work and social life, but I wanted to bring something to everyone’s awareness.

Apparently Atom.io the GitHub editor has done something I think is definitely not in the spirit of true open source at least laid out by our predecessors.  Ever since I can remember Firefox and other open projects notify you that they are collecting data on you if you would like them to.  They tell you it will help them and they have a pop-up toolbar at the bottom.  It will notify users of this practice and allows them to easily decide what they would like to share.   Atom on the other hand has it enabled by default and the only notification is text you can barely read on a static welcome page.  Now I normally check things like this out, but it never occurs to me a software developed claiming to be open would do this.  Even Netbeans asks permission.  All this new software coming out has no respect for privacy.  Haven’t they learned anything from projects that have come before it?

I love the Atom project, but this warrants a fork if it is not fixed.  This is not acceptable from any piece of software.  You need to inform users with a pop-up notification at the very least and ask if it is ok to enable something like this and let the user decide if they want to participate.

If using your software is stipulated on the fact that we also need to be your BETA testers people usually respond better when this is something they do willingly.

Here is a link to the current GitHub discussion about it – https://github.com/atom/atom/issues/4966

Please voice your opinion so this is changed.