I'd like to point out that there's a few upstream JIRAs related to this
conversation that, if resolved, might address all concerns in this thread:


To the points made, I really don't find the error message to be that
problematic for new contributors, especially now that `git status`
prominently shows the ignored files left behind from a build in a different
branch. It tells you precisely what the problem is, and which file to look
in to to see the details. The bare minimum thing a contributor can do is
read the error message, after all. And, doing so will begin getting them
into the mindset of understanding the licensing, which is really a
prerequisite for contributing.

I empathize with the concerns enumerated about the error being related to
something other than what the user did... but the fact is, it's not
unrelated to what the user did. It's related to the fact that they are
using the SCM, building, then switching branches, then building again
without cleaning up the previous build. This would be equivalent to
unpacking a tarball and running `make`, then unpacking a different tarball
over top of the first and running `make install`. It's not unrelated to the
contributor's actions. However, it is true that they may not understand the
quirks of maven, git, and the rat plugin, to understand how it is related
to what they did, and with that I share the expressed frustration, but am
also more than willing to help any contributors fill this gap in their
understanding (as I'm sure we all are). I further doubt that this has
actually caused any possible contributor to be turned away, without so much
as a question in IRC or on the mailing lists.

At this point, I think there's probably an irreconcilable difference in
views regarding the default action of this plugin. So, perhaps it might be
necessary to simply vote on the issue.

Christopher L Tubbs II
On Fri, Jul 11, 2014 at 7:07 AM, Sean Busbey <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
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