We currently have more than 500 chat rooms. Only about 50 of them have had a message in the past month, and only about 15 of them have had a message in the last 24 hours.
We’ve observed time and time again situations where campers enthusiastically introduce themselves in inactive chatrooms, only to never get a reply or a greeting.
This is a negative experience for them, and a waste of their time. They could have spent this time introducing themselves in an active chat room where people would actually read what they wrote and would respond to them.
Over time, even a semi-inactive chatroom will become completely inactive.
Our goal is to only have highly active chat rooms.
It also means moving low-volume topics over to a platform where a delayed response is OK and expected: our forum.
We will continue to offer a long tail of topics to discuss, but a chatroom is a poor medium for low-volume messages. This forum is a much better medium for this.
So we are archiving a vast majority of these semi-inactive and completely inactive rooms. We started a public discussion of this back in May.
Note that is not enough to merely unlist these inactive rooms, because new campers will still stumble upon them and introduce themselves, expecting a response. A big part of this is how Gitter handles rooms. For example, here is its overview of Free Code Camp’s rooms. Note that even rooms with many members are still relatively inactive. These rooms also show up in searches within Gitter and on Google.
We’ve updated our official chat room list. In the coming days, we will download the full archives of these public chat rooms and release the entire dataset as open data. You’ll be able to download this dataset and explore it for yourself, along with various researchers and data scientists who want to better understand open source communities and how learning to code works.
If you have any feedback on this transition, or questions, please reply to this post.