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From Sean Busbey <bus...@cloudera.com>
Subject Re: [DISCUSS] correcting abusive behavior on mailing lists was (Re: [DISCUSS] Multi-Cluster HBase Client)
Date Wed, 01 Jul 2015 12:40:27 GMT
On Wed, Jul 1, 2015 at 7:19 AM, Shahab Yunus <shahab.yunus@gmail.com> wrote:

> I am a very new here and also my contribution to the mailing list has been
> limited as well. I am not even a committer. But I have been following and
> reading the mailing list for a while. So given that, I am taking the
> liberty and chiming in my 2 cents. I don't profess or claim to read other
> people's mind or comment on how they truly are or be patronizing. These are
> just purely my subjective observations. No offense intended.
Part of why we have these discussions on the open lists instead of on a
committer-only or PMC-only list is that the open lists define the
community. There's no need to caveat your feedback; your voice in this

> I totally understand where Andrew Purtell and Stack are coming from and
> yes, Michael Segel has been in the past and in this particular email too,
> be quite rude and dismissive. Unnecessarily so. At the same time, he is
> clearly a smart guy when it comes to the topic of the mailing list. I also
> realize that being smart or intelligent in one's field or area does not
> give you a free pass to railroad or demean everyone else. But the thing is
> that I don't think Michael is just a mean or rude person. Quite a few
> times, he tries to temper his sarcastic barbs with a smiley and emoticons
> to lighten the effect. Especially if they are of the personal nature or in
> direct response to another poster (on the other hand he could be harsh when
> talking about design decisions in general). I also have a belief (blind
> faith as I of course have not met him, lol) that he is more than just a
> smart guy in this area but, in general a sensible individual too and this
> was mostly a misstep and the tone was not tempered at all(?)
Tempering attacks on individuals does not mitigate their inappropriateness.
Given that I agree that Michael is an intelligent person, there have been
too many times that Michael has directly attacked individuals for me to
believe it's a misstep. (I don't want this to become a review of terrible
emails, but frankly the insult towards me in this case was mild compared to
his past behavior i.e. towards Andrew.)

There are lots of smart people in the world. HBase is lucky enough to have
quite a few of them in our community. Even if we didn't, there's no level
of insight that would excuse behaving poorly in the group. Community > Code
is the core of the ASF and one sarcastic genius can't be a community.

> Lastly having said all that, as this has never happened before here on the
> list (if I remember correctly and as mentioned by Andrew), 'ban' is a
> pretty severe measure. Moderation is better in this regard. I have been
> moderating a totally unrelated web forum for few years now and things get
> pretty rowdy there (to put it mildly) and thus ban is not used that
> lightly, and in extreme cases.
Without implying anything about your referenced web forum (since I
obviously know nothing about it), in many cases spaces that are described
as "rowdy" or "no holds barred" are thin masks for harassment and abuse. I
do not want the HBase mailing lists to be described in those terms. I want
it to be described as "nice" or "friendly". I would love "spirited" so long
as it does not include "rude." There are plenty of folks who meet the
standard of "spirited" without crossing the line into "rude" already, so I
don't see why we need to err on the side of tolerating poor behavior.

That said, I agree that banning is a severe measure. I hope we have enough
moderators that consensus can be reached for that approach. If not, I'm in
favor of a ban over not taking action.

> Also, even if we don't want to moderate because of effort involved, why not
> go with a 'warning' system. Give 2 warnings and then on the third strike
> you are banned. Or start with temporary bans which could be extended after
> 2-3 strikes.

We always, always need to start with warnings. Personally, I prefer to
include a pointer to the foundation code of conduct when letting someone
know they've crossed a line. But including a citation of the code of
conduct isn't strictly necessary and the warning need not come from a PMC
member nor even a committer. Michael has been warned several times, so I
don't think that's an issue here.


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