Identifying trivial programs. Freshmeat documents their editorial policy

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From: Eirikur Hallgrimsson (
Date: Tue Jan 30 2001 - 10:36:50 PST

In the course of reading, editing, and approving the endless stream of
freshmeat that passes our way, we have to reject quite a lot of
scripts, small C programs, and PHP classes. While these are clearly
useful to someone, we often have the difficult task of rejecting them
on the grounds of triviality. In this editorial, I am going to attempt
to explain what metric we use for making this decision, some thoughts
on what might be done in the future to reduce the need for such
screening, and, finally, what to do if your script is rejected.

Every freshmeat submission bin warrior quakes at the thought of that
one submission each day that sits on the edge between clearly in and
clearly out. Sometimes it's a script for automating the ripping of an
audio CD; sometimes it's a PHP class to display the current date in
Roman numerals.

The reason for this fear is not retribution from the offended
contributor (although my spam rate increased dramatically after
rejecting one person's script for bulk emailing), but rather the fact
that we feel that we're sending the message "You are not worthy of
contributing to freshmeat, and, by association, not worthy of
contributing to Free Software". This is probably the worst aspect of
the job. Sometimes it's a 10-year-old who has written his first Python
program, and sometimes it's a seasoned business programmer who has had
her first try at Web programming. In any case, we are going to hurt
their feelings by rejecting their work.

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