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From Nicola Ken Barozzi <>
Subject Re: Quarterly Report
Date Tue, 11 May 2004 11:30:36 GMT
Nicola Ken Barozzi wrote:
> I have put the file in SVN exactly like I did with Gump. There people 
> can vote for it and keep track of changes. But if there are still 
> questions, issues or anything else, let's discuss them here, there is no 
> hurry. I repeat, there is no hurry :-)

Below I've attached what has been sent to Cocoon committers when 
creating the Cocoon PMC. It explains quite well what a PMC is form a 
committer's perspective.

Thanks to Stefano Mazzocchi :-)

                               - = -

Dear Apache Committer,

you received this email because you appear listed as a committer for the
Apache Cocoon project.

NOTE: if you feel that you should not be in this list for *any reason
whatsoever* or you want to indicate *explicitly* that you want to become
an emeritus committer, please, let me know. TIA!

As discussed on, the Apache Cocoon development
community wants to submit the ASF board a proposal to create a new
top-level Apache project for Cocoon.

AS for the ASF bylaws [],
any ASF project requires a "project management committee" that will
guarantee legal oversight over the work done by that project.

But how that PMC is composed is suggested by the development community,
if one already exists. The HTTPd and APR projects have shown that a PMC
focused on a specific code and composed by the very same committerst hat
work on that code is the best tradeoff and for this reason, I'm asking
each one of you Cocoon committers to indicate if you would like to
partecipate in that committee.

The PMC is described in section 6.3 of the ASF bylaws which I copied
right here:

<quote from="ASF bylaws">
Section 6.3. Project Management Committees. In addition to the officers
of the corporation, the Board of Directors may, by resolution, establish
one or more Project Management Committees consisting of at least one
officer of the corporation, who shall be designated chairman of such
committee, and may include one or more other members of the corporation.
Unless elected or appointed as an officer in accordance with Sections
6.1 and 6.4 of these Bylaws, a member of a Project Management Committee
shall not be deemed an officer of the corporation.

Each Project Management Committee shall be responsible for the active
management of one or more projects identified by resolution of the Board
of Directors which may include, without limitation, the creation or
maintenance of "open-source" software for distribution to the public at
no charge. Subject to the direction of the Board of Directors, the
chairman of each Project Management Committee shall be primarily
responsible for project(s) managed by such committee, and he or she
shall establish rules and procedures for the day to day management of
project(s) for which the committee is responsible.

The Board of Directors of the corporation may, by resolution, terminate
a Project Management Committee at any time.

As you see, the ASF bylaws where designed to leave the best possible
freedom of operation to the various projects. This was done to allow
different communities to express their own ways of day to day rules and

Before we proceed, some questions you might have:

1) how a PMC is established?

when the ASF board approuves a project, the PMC is appointed and a mail
list is created. All communication between PMC members about PMC-related
discussions will happen there. This mail list will be private and only
PMC members will be able to subscribe.

As a general rule, however, every ASF member that wishes to do so can be
subscribed to that mail list.

How the PMC is composed, elected and maintained over time will be up to
the PMC itself to decide. The ASF board has the final say over the
procedures adopted by the PMC. This guarantees that the communities
follow the basic ASF guidelines of open and consensus-driven development.

The PMC will have a chairman that will make sure that the PMC procedures
are followed and will have the responsibility to talk to the ASF board
if something that requires their attention happens.

2) what does it mean to be a PMC member?

from a legal point of view, you are responsible for the legal oversight
of that project. In short, you should be watching for stuff that would
get the ASF in trouble, like code copyright abuse, illegal licensing
bindings, known patent infringment and the like.

from a technical point of view, the private PMC mail list will be used
only when it's *vital* that information must be kept private before a
resolution is created. An example of such an event is major security
holes that must find a solution *before* the information is spread to
the public.

from a day to day point of view, the PMC chairman will make sure that
the PMC is used *only* when expressively required and will direct
anything else to the public discussion lists.

3) how much time/energy will my potential involvement in the PMC consume?

It depends on what happens, but after a bootstrap period wher rules and
procedures must be defined and written down, the PMC remains mostly idle
(means "no activity whatsoever"!) until something that require its
attention happens (both happening from the botton (the community) or the
top (the ASF board)).

4) will I be able to resign from it?

sure, at any time.

5) will that remove my committer status as well?

absolutely not. PMC membership and project committership are two
separate things. There have been cases where PMC members didn't even
have commit access (for example Tim Bray, the XML spec editor, has been
member of the first PMC without ever contributing a
single line of code to the ASF).

At the same time, I'll personally suggest to the newly appointed PMC
that only project committers be eligible for PMC membership, but this
will be up to the PMC to decide.

Anyway, leaving the PMC will *not* affect your committer status or any
other ASF status that you might previously have.

6) why would you want to be on the PMC?

the Cocoon PMC will have the power to act on behalf of the foundation
for everything that is contained into its own domain. This means that
the PCM will be able to create new supprojects, or accept donations,
have its own top-level domain (, etc.

being part of this PMC means that you get to decide and propose those
things. (although, as a general rule, proposals will be discussed on a
public mail list first to get community consensus)

7) what is the role of the PMC chair?

mostly the role of a secretary, not one of a dictator, even if
benevolent. the PMC will be like a round table where everybody counts as
one. the chair is required by the bylaws and will be in charge of
communication with the board to avoid the board having to deal with tons
of people they might not even know. It's mostly an organization detail
but should *not* impact how the PMC is run.

8) what if shit happens?

the PMC will try to resolve it as good and as fast as it can. If not
possible, the PMC will ask the board for advice. But in general, the PMC
should try to be as self-sufficient as possible.

9) will the PMC *hide* things from the community and make the community
look less open and more bureaucratic?

It greatly depends on how the PMC is run, but as the appointed chair,
I'll make *any* possible effort to make the PMC look like a "last
resort" tool that can be used instead of CC-ing a bunch of people and
maybe forget a few.

So, the PMC will be no more than the private communications that happen
*already* in between committers.

The chair might, after any discussion and decision, decide to copy the
notes of the discussions over to the public lists so that they are made
public and can be publically archived and searched.

                                      - o -

Ok, this should have given you enough information.

Now, please, answer this question:

   - would you like to partecipate in the Cocoon PMC?

      [ ] yes
      [ ] no

Please send your vote to so that it can be
pubblically reviewed.

if you have further questions, please, feel free to ask them again on
the public mail list.

Thank you.

Nicola Ken Barozzi         
             - verba volant, scripta manent -
    (discussions get forgotten, just code remains)

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