A tale of two cultures...
It's pretty clear to me that there is a huge disconnect between Gentoo developers and the rest of the universe - by "universe" I mean Gentoo users, outside Gentoo-based projects, organizations using Gentoo Linux and the Open Source/Free Software community as a whole.
If you ask a typical Gentoo developer and a typical Gentoo user to explain the reason for this disconnect, you may find yourself getting two completely different answers.
The larger Gentoo community tends to view the Gentoo project as a cathedral of sorts. There is a priesthood of developers who control the direction of the project. There is very little communication coming out from the cathedral to inform users about what is going on. Changes in the Portage tree often seem to come with little or no warning. The Foundation has essentially no voice, the Council only communicates with fellow developers, and Gentoo users are left to fend for themselves on the forums, gentoo-wiki.com and sometimes in a bugs.gentoo.org bug report.