Developer Offers Kickbacks For Wayland Alternative

Written by Michael Larabel in Wayland on 1 April 2013 at 10:26 AM EDT. 46 Comments
In an attempt to promote his Wayland fork and gain influence, the lead developer was offering monetary kickbacks to highlight his forked Wayland and Weston code-bases.

Last week there was the freelance article published Why Wayland & Weston Were Forked. The article was independently contributed by Scott Moreau, the developer that forked Wayland/Weston as Northfield/Norwood. He wanted to explain to the general public his reasons for forking the code-bases to this next-generation display server.

Moreau was kicked out of Wayland/Weston too, not because of creating the fork, but other developers had viewed him as being rude to other developers and a poisonous person to the project. In terms of his article on Phoronix, I happily accept freelance contributions on the site for anything that is interesting and technical in nature. With writing hundreds of articles per month on the site, I am happy to accept extra and interesting articles.

There's been more than 120 comments in response to that article last week plus discussions on other sites as well. The comments were about whether the forks had merit, whether Scott was damaging to the Wayland development community, and other factors. In terms of my views on Northfield/Norwood, I am neutral. Having been the first person to ever write about Wayland back in 2008 when the project was in its infancy, anything related to Wayland is generally of interest to me. Anything related to the Linux graphics stack is also generally of interest to me and gets my attention on Phoronix, as most readers should know... Anything that improves the status quo of the Linux desktop is also noteworthy, regardless of whether its Wayland or some alternative like Mir or Northfield/Norwood.

An interesting turn of events in the Northfield/Norwood saga happened this weekend. Scott mentioned he was going to be launching a new project web-site and wanted me to mention it on the site. I replied to him that if the web-site provided new information and was interesting, I'd likely be covering it on Phoronix. Since after all, it's related to my interests and the interests of the site. Scott replied, "Yes there will be new information. A lot of new and changing information. One item that many seem to think is relevant, is the Donate links through which I should be able to accept BTC and Paypal if everything goes as planned. Conversely, there is a separate Contribute link to make non-monetary donations. It aims to be a clean site free from FUD and ads."

Even before I said anything back to him, he wrote another email:
I don't mean to sound haughty Mike, but I know precisely how marketing works. I have never done it for myself because:

1) I didn't have enough experience in the past to back up anything.
2) I hate money and everything for which it stands.
3) I only want to work for myself, not others.

I wouldn't feed you the same crap over and over again, but I want to keep the initial excitement new and fresh for everyone out there but for the good of your site too. People's attention spans are short and they get tired of the same things quickly. You made my article hot, now I'm going to try and work on some hot videos for you and everyone else out there. It takes time to work out many of the features I do. I don't plan on bugging you with the same POS desktop image every time. I hope to possibly put out a video maybe once every month or two.

I also know that you're an effective marketer and have an inherent interest to protect the health and interest of your establishment. I wouldn't want to tarnish your image but make it shine brighter. Sorry to get all philosophical on you but I sense that you are thinking I might expect you to throw another hype video up every week. The initial hype is over and I'll bide my time. I have plenty of it nowadays.

In this particular case, it is in my best interest to release the site while the hype is still fresh. I'd be willing to give you a kick back if it produces anything significant, for providing me a clear voice in this critical time. Thanks again Mike, i really mean it.
Something didn't click with him. Yep, he's trying to offer a kickback (from people donating on the site to the project) to me to write more content about Northfield/Norwood... That's something I do not do. It's really silly too, especially considering how eager I am to always write about more X11/Wayland/Mir news.

I didn't get around to replying to him on Easter when he sent several more emails:
So here's my plan: I will begin announcing the site to everyone, putting it in the channel topics etc, tomorrow, maybe much later in the day, just enough to get the 1st tag. But, the trick is, the site is partially incomplete because I'm still in the process of setting up paypal and BTC. So I'm just going to leave the donation links as text: "BTC" and "Paypal". Then after the dedicated accounts clear, I'll properly hook up both links quietly. Hope you can help.
And then another e-mail:
P.S.: I would not be opposed to you sensationalizing it, saying it leaked or something but I know you don't like to intentionally deceive people and I respect that. But I have a chance to play my first ever april fools joke on a worl wide audience. I could wait for the post to hit and act like I was just about to put it up. Or just regularly scheduled news, whatever you want to do, I'm all ears.
And another one, among several more:
Of course the more I think about it, it wouldn't be an untrue statement "This was leaked from a supposedly reliable resource" and make it sound seriously professional or whatever :)
Plus a few more one-way emails too, but nothing too juicy. Evidently it's his birthday today (he did even proactively offer to send a copy of his Colorado driver license if I wanted proof), and so to promote the new Northfield web-site that way.
Or we can just be completely open and just say 'Scott Moreau does not celebrate birthdays but he wanted to release the website on this special day blah blah blah'
No kickbacks for promoting content/projects are accepted on Phoronix and against my policy. I didn't get around to responding to Scott with his recent proposals, but here's your birthday wish: For those wanting to see the Northfield web-site to learn more about this Wayland fork, the newly-launched web-site is
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Michael Larabel

Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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