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From "Ross Gardler (MS OPEN TECH)" <>
Subject RE: [DISCUSS] Whimsy PMC
Date Tue, 28 Apr 2015 01:51:44 GMT
It's a tough one. We could be setting a precedence here that we absolutely do not want to set.
On the other hand, it's problematic (not to mention simply ridiculous) if the foundation not
being able to use Apache software because we don't pay for development and might want to submit
a patch upstream.

As long as all committers are equal and earn their merit in the traditional way I don't see
a problem from the projects side. IN this instance the ASF is just another contributor to
the project.

This means "the foundation never pays for development" to something like "the foundation never
pays for development except where the modification is made as part of our normal infrastructure
operations. On these rare occasions the foundation is just another employer and the contributor
is just another community member. Changes are contributed upstream through the normal contribution
process. There is no special role for ASF infra contractors."


-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of Sam Ruby
Sent: Monday, April 27, 2015 6:11 PM
Subject: Re: [DISCUSS] Whimsy PMC

On Mon, Apr 27, 2015 at 7:12 PM, Rich Bowen <> wrote:
> On 04/27/2015 02:45 PM, Upayavira wrote:
>> On Mon, Apr 27, 2015, at 06:50 PM, David Nalley wrote:
>>> On Thu, Apr 23, 2015 at 2:46 PM, Sam Ruby <> wrote:
>>>> Initial sketch placed on the wiki:
>>>> Anyone who is so inclined is welcome to edit the proposal directly.
>>>> No urgency or timeframe in mind (other than preferably starting 
>>>> sometime in 2015ish).  My current thinking is to follow in Steve's 
>>>> footprints and go directly to TLP, but I'm starting a discussion 
>>>> here (in Incubator) to see if there are any other thoughts on the 
>>>> matter.
>>>> - Sam Ruby
>>> So one question (and perhaps a selfish concern).
>>> Infrastructure has a significant interest in whimsy (the service and 
>>> codebase). I suspect that the ASF is also likely (at least for now) 
>>> the primary user. Infrastructure has spent some time and resources, 
>>> and even has a contractor that is paid on working on Whimsy and the 
>>> associated areas.
>>> My question (and selfish concern) is: We have generally accepted 
>>> that the ASF doesn't pay for development on projects. What does that 
>>> mean for the contractors? Are they effectively forbidden from doing 
>>> development work on Whimsy? In particular, I have a ruby developer 
>>> working as a contractor who I'd like to working on things like 
>>> Whimsy, secretary workbench, etc.
>> What a wonderful question!!
>> My take: a contractor cannot be paid to work on Whimsy, that's fair 
>> and understandable. He is paid to work on ASF infrastructure. 
>> However, as a part of fulfilling those duties, if he needs to work on 
>> Whimsy, or to code up a patch on httpd, or whatever, so be it. As far 
>> as the *project* is concerned, he is a volunteer the same as everyone 
>> else. He's being paid to work on infrastructure, not on Whimsy.
> This feels like sophistry, and a dangerous first step. If we have a 
> *full
> time* employee who is working primarily on a particular project, then 
> it's not odd to claim that they are being paid to develop Apache code. 
> That being the case, then the ASF is doing that thing that we have 
> asserted, for all time, that we will never do.

I'll assert that infrastructure team routinely writes code.  Random example:

I'm uncomfortable that much of that is "special snowflake" code; and some of it has a sole
author capable of maintenance.

I don't have personal knowledge of examples, but I do believe that from time to time the Infrastructure
team has contributed patches "upstream" to the products they depend on (for example, FreeBSD?).

>> One thing that I saw during my stint as VP Fundraising is that 
>> projects and the Foundation really are distinct things. The 
>> Foundation can contract someone to work on a project that it needs in 
>> order to support the work of the Foundation. If that happens to be 
>> contributing to an ASF project, so be it. However, they are not 
>> gaining any special privilege, they are as it were "paid by an 
>> external entity" just like all other contributors to any other ASF project.
> In this case, though, it will be the ASF paying for a developer to 
> work on an ASF project.
> I hope that we're not just taking a convenient position that will bite 
> us later.

I trust that Ross, you, and David will find the right balance.

> --
> Rich Bowen - - @rbowen - 
> @apachecon

- Sam Ruby

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