Open Source Update: Bleach

As of today, I transferred ownership of Bleach to the Mozilla organization, and the Mozilla WebDev team, in particular Will Kahn-Greene and Jannis Leidel, are taking over maintenance of it.

Huge thanks to Will, Jannis and Chris Lonnen. Bleach needs more attentive stewardship, and I believe the project will be much better off with them at the helm. I wish them the best of luck in leading Bleach forward.

I haven’t forked the Mozilla repo, so if you go to the old URL you’ll be redirected to the new one. If I ever do fork it, I’ll put a note at the top of the README.

That’s the news, here’s the op-ed.

Giving over the reins of an open source project is bittersweet. I’m thrilled that Bleach has enough users that it needs attention. It is was my most-starred repo (though not my most-downloaded Python project, an honor which goes to pystatsd). It’s one of my first Python libraries—of which I’m both proud and horrified. It’s difficult to accept that it’s time to hand it over.

But it is.

The truth is that I don’t use Bleach anymore. None of the projects I work on need it. I’m not suffering from its problems, and it’s hard to prioritize Bleach over other work.

And if that didn’t make me a poor-enough choice as maintainer, I seem to disagree with the direction people who actually use Bleach want and need it to take. If I had my druthers, a lot of its current features would be dialed back, and it would focus on the “as a commenter, I want to use a small set of HTML to mark up this snippet” use case. But maybe that’s a different tool.

And even then, nothing I’m doing today would need it.

So it’s time to realize I was only guarding Bleach so closely because of ego, put that ego aside and let the project live on without me.