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From David Blevins <>
Subject Re: What hidden agenda?
Date Mon, 08 Nov 2004 20:38:33 GMT

On Nov 8, 2004, at 12:24 PM, Jeremy Boynes wrote:

> Jim Jagielski wrote:
>> Within the ASF, the use of the development mailing list is *the* 
>> method
>> of development discussion. That's the reason for it.
>> Wikis are good for "after the fact" documentation.
>> IRC is good when a small subset of developers need to
>> get together quickly to talk about some aspects of
>> development, but it should quickly and completely
>> migrate to email after the "pressing" matters have
>> been dealt with. Same with thinks like "meetings
>> over beer" and stuff like that. The reason, of
>> course, should be obvious: it excludes by its very
>> nature other developers. And you can't have collaborative
>> development when that happens.
>> Also, in-the-open development via Email makes it easy
>> to prevent such claims as "back door" activity. How can it
>> be back door when it's openly discussed in the primary
>> development scheme?
>> In general, however, such things as "we discussed this
>> on IRC and we decided to do this and we'll post a
>> summary on Email when we can" is never a good idea,
>> and can result in kindly words that "development is always
>> done on the mailing list" to fiery words that "people are
>> trying to have their cake and eat it too by riding on
>> the ASF name without adhering to its standard practices."
>> This is an issue that every ASF project has had to deal with
>> in one way or another.
> I think you are missing the true issue here.
> The off-list discussion between Aaron and myself came about because it 
> was pretty darn clear that we were not effectively communicating our 
> thoughts in email and that the thread was disintegrating into dispute. 
> Rather than indulge in a flame fest we took action to help reach 
> consensus in the community. The intent and outcome of the off-list 
> discussion was a plan on how to get back to a reasonable discussion 
> *on the list* - no technical decisions were made.
> The bitter and personal attack that came as a response to this 
> achieves the exact opposite of what you desire as it encourages people 
> to keep quiet about such discussions; for, like it or not, such 
> discussions will happen (ApacheCon anyone?).
> But it is more than that. Speculative allegations seed FUD about the 
> project and are, in my opinion, deleterious to the project and 
> community. We should not encourage or condone such behaviour.
> You had two individuals here trying to resolve a technical difference 
> by discussing between themselves how to coherently present the issue 
> to the community so all could be involved. This is a good thing.
> You had two individuals flame them for doing so with accusations of a 
> hidden agenda. This is a bad thing. Talk of cake and coat-tails simply 
> promulgates that meme.

Don't throw me into that category.  My exact words were, "Motivations, 
diffusing, back channels....  Can we turn this back into a technical 


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