So I was made an Embarcadero MVP about two weeks ago, an achievement I’m quite proud of. It was, I believe, largely for my work on the TIndex and my off-line ADUG activities more so than my blog entries here.
Meanwhile everyone’s favourite grumpy old uncle (well he reminds me of a grumpy old uncle anyway) has made a few comments here and there about the impartiality of the new MVPs. Come on Uncle Jolyon, can’t we MVPs have the benefit of the doubt for a few weeks at least.
It is an important question though and one that the community at large deserves an answer on. If the MVP program has the effect of muzzling a whole bunch of enthusiastic and well-regarded community members then we’re better off without it.
This issue is one that I feel so strongly about that initially I declined the invitation to join the MVP program. There is a clause in the MVP agreement that states that MVPs won’t criticise Embarcadero or its products. That clause was way too broad my liking and so I declined the invitation to join. I later reversed my decision when I was assured that the intention of the clause is not to muzzle all criticisms, rather it is there as a way to eject an MVP who has gone rogue and does nothing but criticise.
I knew this would have to be tested eventually although I didn’t expect to happen quite so soon. This most recent news of a leaked EULA agreement brought to our attention by grumpy old uncle Jolyon and now all but confirmed by David I is something I don’t feel I can let pass, in particular now that I am an MVP.
I’ve been of the opinion for quite some time the Delphi SKUs aren’t really appropriate for the software development world of today and it’s obvious from today’s news that Embarcadero has also come to this realisation.
Their intended way of addressing this problem though, requiring an add-on pack for any sort of client/server database access including via third party libraries or databases, is an extremely retrograde step.
I won’t bother going into too much detail about why I think this is a bad idea as plenty of other people have already expressed their opinions and I’m hard pressed to find anyone with an objection that I don’t agree with (and to be able to say that for a delphi.non-technical thread is really quite surprising).
What I will say is that as an MVP I signed on to promote Delphi and its community, in particular my personal interest is in finding the next generation of Delphi programmers. That job just became quite a bit harder when the cost of an already expensive Delphi licence just jumped substantially if you need to do something as ordinary and day to day as connect to a database.
As an Embarcadero MVP I appeal to Embarcadero to abandon this plan and I encourage other MVPs who share this view to speak out also.