Gentoo Archives: gentoo-dev

From: Denis Dupeyron <calchan@g.o>
To: gentoo-dev@l.g.o
Subject: [gentoo-dev] Re: [gentoo-council] Policy regarding the inactive members
Date: Sun, 11 Apr 2010 15:01:50
In Reply to: [gentoo-dev] Policy regarding the inactive members by Markos Chandras
1 On Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 7:16 AM, Markos Chandras <hwoarang@g.o> wrote:
2 > Hello folks,
4 Hi Markos. A small detail first. You shouldn't cross post as it makes
5 things confusing and often results in threads splitting. I have no
6 problem with that because my email client merges threads but it's not
7 the case for everybody.
9 > Looking through the Council project page, the policy regarding the inactive
10 > council members doesn't look optimal to me
12 If you look at the summary of the last council meeting you will see
13 that I was tasked to start discussions on rewriting GLEP 39. I have
14 gathered input from various sources and will start posting the
15 discussion topics real soon now. One of them is about voting by email
16 which impacts the slacker rule. Your email will be particularly useful
17 for the discussion of that topic.
19 > 1) He is inactive in critical discussions ( such as the whole Phoenix
20 > discussion ) for a certain period of time
22 This is an interesting concept but finding a metric to gauge activity
23 based on mailing list discussion is very difficult for two reasons.
24 You use the example of the Phoenix discussion as one where council
25 members should have posted to show their activity. However, although
26 you consider me active you may have noted that I haven't publicly
27 participated to it. This doesn't mean I don't care or don't have an
28 opinion on it. But, and this is the other reason, much of the work I
29 do is done in private. Not that I want to hide anything but I read
30 threads and based on what developers and users say I ask questions,
31 advise, (re-)motivate, or connect people, etc... And I do that in
32 private because it doesn't make much sense to have those conversations
33 on mailing lists, and also because you guys already see enough of me
34 there.
36 > 2) Fails to accomplish his role by supervising the Gentoo projects. Remember
37 > we have plenty of Gentoo projects nearly dead and there is no way for us to
38 > participate since contacting the project leaders is a no-go. Indirect
39 > question: Is the council aware of the status of all projects? Shouldn't it
40 > be since he is responsible for them?
42 Another hard one to find a metric for. Beyond that, when I wrote my
43 manifesto for last year's elections I talked with other developers
44 about the possibility for the council to "audit" projects on a
45 volunteer basis. By audit I meant and explained that the council would
46 closely look at a project at their request and offer advice on short
47 and long term operation. This wasn't well received at all, to the
48 point that I didn't even bother adding it to my manifesto.
50 It seems that project leads like to consider their project as their
51 own little corner of Gentoo, and don't like too much to be interfered
52 with. I'm personally OK with that. One of the reasons is that we rely
53 on volunteer manpower and you can't force a volunteer to do anything
54 (s)he doesn't want or like or (s)he'll leave. You have to be very
55 careful when interfering with their work and find the right balance
56 which will change from one situation to the other.
58 One example I remember is when last year the kde project was
59 considering going forward without a lead. It isn't technically a
60 top-level project so it isn't required to have a lead. I thought that
61 in the case of such a large project it was a bad idea to not have one
62 though. I wanted to force an election but decided I would wait for the
63 right opportunity to make it happen as smoothly as possible. Jorge
64 will probably confirm that there was no arm wrestling involved. Making
65 such things happen without hurting anybody and stepping on anybody's
66 toes requires a lot of thinking and planning. From the opinion of a
67 lot of devs it's about as far as one should go. By the way this is
68 probably the kind of "leadership" Ben was referring to in his recent
69 thread, although I didn't mention it there as I don't like bragging
70 about these things.
72 > I feel sorry to admit that the current council failed to become a good
73 > leader for Gentoo and his inactivity demotivates both users and
74 > developers
76 I partly agree with you. I considered resigning last year when I saw
77 the disaster from the inside. Ferris convinced me that the right thing
78 to do was to stay on and do my best to keep things working and change
79 them when necessary. Which I'm still trying to do, but right now I'm
80 not sure I'll run next time.
82 Denis.