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I am a regular Debian/Ubuntu user, and have hung out often on the #ubuntu channel helping people out.
I just want to know your opinions on the developer/user networks of various distributions. Primarily here are some of the questions I am looking forward to having answered, and my own thoughts as well.
1. Friendliness of the community to accept new users.
2. Ability of the community to realize that not all users on IRC are utter n00bs and know nothing, and actually respect people who seem to know something.
3. Have a nice seperate channel for offtopic discussion, where flamewars do not erupt.
I guess you get my point. I know Linux is all about the community, and I feel kind of left out if all I do is use Linux (any distribution) and not contribute back in any way. I have made a couple of forum posts, and have sat a while on IRC, but I want to start contributing in a bigger way, and decided to start doing it with forum/IRC support first and then going on to other stuff.
So .. coming back, from my opinion, the extreme popularity of Ubuntu makes the Ubuntu channel crowded with n00bs, and not so n00bish people as well. The problem I have there is, either my question is drowned in the huge number of questions that immediately follow my typing, or people answering me as if I have never used Linux before (which annoys me, even after I let them know of the technical expertise, whatever little, I have). However, the #gentoo channel is an *awesome* and *amazing place to be*. Seriously. I am guessing this is because unlike Ubuntu, the people of Gentoo, one, are smarter, and two the users are also slightly more technically inclined than your average joe. I feel like I am getting the support I need and the respect.
Surprisingly, even the #debian channel is pretty friendly. Though there might not be as much activity as Ubuntu, or even gentoo, your questions are answered, and nobody is being snobbish about it.
So, what are your thoughts? What channel would you suggest for a newbie to hang out in, and for a relatively experienced user to give that support?
#gentoo is a good place to get answers, but its also a good place to fight. Like yourself I find that Gentoo users usually have a better understanding of Linux than Ubuntu users, but that seems to come with a price. Gentoo-ers tend to be or at least come off many times as arrogant, rude, and/or snobby.
As far as my two cents are worth though, I'd rather hang out with the snobby kids who can fix my computer than the nice kids who have no idea whats going on.
My best words of advice for IRC: If someone insults you... don't take it personally. Especially if it was me ;-)