Dennis's Blog

Remembering Santa-Gate

I had opened VScode Insider's earlier this month, and after the first update was really disappointed to not see a holiday Easter Egg. I was wondering what was up with this, and then it came back to me.

For the unaware, one year ago to the date a github user posted a complaint in the form of an issue on the VScode repo. In it, the user detailed how they were offended by the santa hat - going so far as to say that as a jew, the santa hat was as offensive as a swastika.

I'm not here to speak to the right or wrong aspects of how Microsoft responded (they caved). I'm not here to speak to whether or not the issue (and the flurry of comments and new issues that actually lead the MS team to freeze the repo) was a coordinated effort by the 4chan community. I'm not here to pass judgement, in any way, shape, or form.

I'm here to express my disappointment that one more fun aspect of the programming/tech realm is gone. I'm not going to pull the "cancel culture" card, I'm not going to complain about MS wanting to please every member of their community. It's not just the holiday easter eggs, it seems every year the tech space gets a little less fun. Advent of Code is the only annual tech/programmer event that I look forward to every year. Where's the complaints about it? I'm ready, hell I'm expecting for AoC to be cancelled because of petty crap like this.

Complaints stemming from personal interpretation of symbols alone should never be valid grounds for removal. My respect for MS would have quadrupled if they stood their ground. It could have been a santa hat, a sleigh, a dreidle, a snowflake (which is what replaced the santa hat), or any other symbol of the holidays. They could have said we've done this now and we'll keep your thoughts in mind for next year.



I'm a software developer, philanthropist, biker, cyclist, hiker, gamer, drone pilot, photo bug, and all around DIY enthusiast. I like to think I can cook, and enjoy a good game of PUBG/WarZone every now and then.

Yell at me on twitter, github, and at home. Typically present with the handle @dengsauve on most sites.