Enabling Logging By Default (Was: Re: Pidgin usability look on the web)

Sadrul Habib Chowdhury imadil at gmail.com
Sun Nov 9 13:44:19 EST 2008

* Ethan Blanton had this to say on [09 Nov 2008, 13:25:44 -0500]:
> Richard Laager spake unto us the following wisdom:
> > The following discussion occurred after mpt's usability comparison
> > between Empathy and Pidgin. Ubuntu turned on logging by default in
> > Intrepid. Nobody seems to be screaming about it that I've heard of.
> Ignorance is bliss.
> > I've enabled logging by default (for chats and IMs, not the "system"
> > log) for our next minor release. I've also changed the default logging
> > type to HTML so that the logs include formatting and thus look
> > identical* to when they were originally sent.
> > 
> > When I say "by default", I mean that I've changed the default value of
> > the preference. Thus, this only affects new users.
> > 
> > Objections?
> I reiterate my position that this is an unfortunate continuation of
> the philosophy shown by virtually all applications today, of
> defaulting to collecting and storing large amounts of personal
> information in the name of "improving usability".

I agree completely.


> IM logs aren't the end of the world, so I'm not going to go
> disapproving this revision or anything (though that seems to have
> become popular, lately), but I don't like the trend.  My objection is
> based not on usability, but on privacy concerns.  Perhaps we should at
> least provide a 'purge logs' or 'purge private information' function,
> as web browsers do, if we choose to start storing this sort of
> information without user acceptance.  (Not that that is a complete
> solution, of course.)

I think we should just leave it as it used to be, and let the
distributions carry the changes they see fit for their users (like
Ubuntu apparently did for Intrepid)? Isn't this possible for
distributions to do by simply using appropriate default preferences,
without requiring any patch to the code at all?


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