Newsletter #150: Juneteenth

Hello Recompilers,

Happy Juneteenth! This week the Recompiler is excited to release Reasons and Strategies for Avoiding Obsolete Terms, which lays out exactly why and how to replace “master/slave” in programming with “primary/replica,” written by Erin Grace. It’s an excerpt from the book The Responsible Communication Style Guide Supplement on Python.


This year Juneteenth exploded out into mainstream, non-Black consciousness. The holiday has been celebrated for over 150 years and marks when enslaved people in Texas were finally told they were free. Wired has an interesting exploration of exactly how the holiday went viral in 2020.

Today, to celebrate Juneteenth and demonstration the power of the working class, 38,000 dockworkers are shutting down all 29 of the US’s ports on the West Coast. The action was called by the International Warehouse and Longshore Union, the ILWU.

Sociology professor Simone Browne tracks the surveillance of Black people and this week Browne broke down exactly why Big Tech’s overtures towards racial equality ring so hollow.

Bandcamp is donating its share of proceeds today to the NAACP, so today is a perfect day to buy music from Black musicians. maintains a directory if you’d like to explore new artists.


The Final Straw: “Every Day!”: A View on the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone
The Final Straw talks with a Black anarchist who grew up near Capitol Hill in Seattle about the autonomous protest that has sprung up, called either the CHAZ or CHOP depending on who you ask. He discusses the history of Seattle radicalism and occupation as well as the specific groundwork that was laid to allow for the space to form. He also touches on the ways in which the Black community is not monolithic and how people can be deceived as a result.

Conference Talk of the Week:

This talk is part of our “Favorite Talks” YouTube Playlist. Check it out and subscribe! 

Successfully Onboarding a Junior Engineer in Three Steps

Emily Giurleo at RailsConf 2020 couch edition talks about why onboarding shouldn’t be an afterthought.


Recompiler is hiring editors and designers.

Do you know an upcoming conference or CFP that should be included in this newsletter? Email leads to

This newsletter compiled by Margaret Killjoy (@magpiekilljoy). Margaret is an author, activist, and musician based in Appalachia. Her most recent book series is the Danielle Cain novella series, which starts with The Lamb Will Slaughter the Lion.

Image caption: Juneteenth Emancipation Day Celebration, June 19, 1900, Texas. Photo by Mrs. Charles Stephenson (Grace Murray)