How DevRel is failing communities

this Topic will be presented by Florian Gilcher

at April Meetup 2019, hosted by Tobias Pfeiffer

Recent years have seen an uptake of "developer relationship" strategies. Tech companies are actively talking to people using (or potentially using) their technologies instead of the people buying them (usually managers). Briefly put, DevRel is a mixture of sales/marketing and headhunting.

DevRel people are also usually responsible to uphold relationships with notable figures in their target communities and foster contacts. This was definitely an improval about what was before. Now, contact is quick, personal and relaxed.

But for community workers, it also comes with a lot of issues. Plainly stated, this happens because individuals interact with individuals, but the relationship of companies to communities doesn't happen on an individual level. An overview of how DevRel is successful on the individual level, but failing communities, mostly due to structural issues of their setup themselves and how this replicates issues already present in the FOSS community.

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