This RFC covers the proposal of adopting Slack for our chat platform (in lieu of hipchat).
The current user arguments in favour are:
- User preference (as expressed frequently to me) due to familiarity with other projects using Slack
- More finely tuned notifications, client read message synchronisation (mobile/desktop) and similar superior usability features
- Perceived poor performance of Hipchat (in terms of service availability, connection management, buggy clients)
The community support arguments are:
- Interface with standard protocols (IRC, XMPP) and fee structure make it more approachable to eg. students needing urgent help rather than the more "gatekeeper" model required from hipchat
- The adoption trend seems to favour Slack, so likely to be more popular as we onboard more external collaborators in the coming yers
The SQuaRE arguments in favour are:
- More actively supported integrations platform
- An opportunity to normalise chat usernames to match Github usernames, which would simplify implementation of a much requested feature to @ users for their build failure notifications
- No need to cull inactive usernames
The arguments against are:
- Disruption of change
- No 1:1 video facility
- There is a separate question of whether to join Slack with the free (but limited history search) plan, or the per-user plan with unlimited history plan (which would still need some gatekeeping). The argument is that the successful introduction of Discoursed-base c.l.o should lead us to treating chat as a more transient platform and flush substantive conversations to Discourse.
- In the event this RFC passes, implementation needs to lag until SQuaRE can move the current integrations (eg. Jenkins) over.
- Despite a SQuaRE preference for Slack for the reasons stated, we feel like a minor stakeholder in this questions compared to user preference. Also, this RFC affects more users than typical. For this reasons, I encourage you to fill this poll unless you really want to add something to the arguments.
Poll Results as of 2016-02-12 (see [^Data_Q1_160212.pdf] attachment):
"I actively prefer Slack","36.4 %"
"I actively prefer Hipchat","4.5 %"
"I don't mind, let the people who care choose","50.0 %"
"I don't have a preference but don't want to have to change.","9.1 %"