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To: "Alec Warner" <antarus@g.o>
From: "Jan Bilek" <clonolu@...>
Subject: Re: Re: How to improve the trustees
Date: Mon, 4 Feb 2008 16:32:13 +0100
On Feb 4, 2008 7:50 AM, Alec Warner <antarus@g.o> wrote:
> On 2/3/08, Jan Bilek <clonolu@...> wrote:
> > - Gentoo used to be 'bleeding edge' - it's not anymore.
> I'm really digging for specifics here.  'bleeding edge' is very
> unspecific.  It is my experience that major updates are available
> hours or days after release.  Are you dissatisfied that this is not
> true for some packages, or dissatisfied that the packages are marked
> for testing and masked instead of being stable or ~arch?

A couple of years ago when a new version of any application appeared
some Gentoo users popped out in some discussion immediately laughing
"haha, we've got it in our official tree, we are the first ones..." -
Gentoo used to be famous for that;-)

When I started with Gentoo my /etc/portage/package.use used to be
empty. Now I have a lot of ~x86s (and I have never had any trouble
with them - do all of them need to be ~ed?). Obviously I am not the
only one - unfortunately the discussions I have read about it are not
in English but I can tell you I seem to have observed some kind of a
trend: users leaving Gentoo and choosing Arch - some of them
explicitly stated that it was because of too many ~archs they needed:
- Why I left Gentoo and chose Arch. For those who understand Czech and
are interested in fiery discussions - see also:
- you can see many users claiming they left Gentoo and have chosen
Arch. I am not saying it means anything about Gentoo - but I think
it's good to know about it.

I am not saying it's necessarily bad thing to be a bit slower than the
most bleeding-edge distros. Maybe it's because Gentoo has better QA
than for example Arch. Maybe this is just one of these things that
need to be explained to users - a communication issue again. But some
people claim it is because of a lack of manpower in Gentoo - in that
case we might want to re-think recruitment process.

> Arrogant?  I'd imagine some are; I personally try not to be and I'm
> sure I fail at it quite often.
> I don't think Gentoo is a club for elitests

I don't think that either. I just wanted to say that I had observed
many users who think so and many of them claim to have left Gentoo
because of that - which means there is something wrong with
communication again. Why are Gentoo developers perceived as arrogant?
Does the arrogant minority get more attention than decent majority?
I think Gentoo needs better tools to manage it's PR.

> I certainly develop for myself and not for users.  Now this is a fine
> line to walk.  Developing for yourself means you work at your own
> pace; it doesn't give you the right to be mean to folks or to
> contribute negatively.  It means you don't really get deadlines and
> you get to choose what to work on regardless of others input.
> I would counter-argue that a *subset* of users have unrealistic
> expectations  such as having ebuilds in the tree hours after release,
> or fixing a bug just because it was filed, or asking for crazy code
> changes to the package manager to fix their corner case that is not
> sane.  The point is that most developers are pretty nice and will
> probably help you if you ask in a courteous manner and most users are
> nice to talk to and help.

I agree - absolutely.

> We don't have enough cohesion right now to present a unified front.
> PR is composed of only so many folks and those folks in turn are
> driven by events from developers and users in a bottom up fashion; aka
> they don't report news unless they are told or they know about it.  We
> have about 100+ mailing lists for projects and no one can monitor them
> all.  This was supposed to be how the GWN operated; news would
> percolate to the GWN folks who would create a weekly newsletter;
> however submissions stopped coming in which is why the news stopped.
> I think many users enjoyed the content in the GWN and I think we could
> possibly try something like that again.  How do we notify users that
> the news is basically driven by their input?  We have no reporters;
> which means we need people to act as them for us.

Yes - reporters - I like that idea. Active PR. Now Gentoo has mainly
passive PR which means that it gets attention only when problems and
conflicts occur - bad publicity.

IMO Gentoo needs a better conflict-management tool to manage internal
relations (a better and more powerful mechanism how to watch and
possibly get rid of troublemakers before many developers and users are
lost because of their behavior, and maybe some other way how to solve
the conflict without at least one side of a dispute leaving Gentoo...)
and proactive positive PR.

Thanx, Jan.
gentoo-nfp@g.o mailing list

Re: Re: How to improve the trustees
-- Denis Dupeyron
Re: Re: How to improve the trustees
-- Marius Mauch
Re: Re: How to improve the trustees
-- Douglas James Dunn
Re: How to improve the trustees
-- Jan Bilek
Re: How to improve the trustees
-- Christian Faulhammer
Re: Re: How to improve the trustees
-- Jan Bilek
Re: Re: How to improve the trustees
-- Alec Warner
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