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From Sam Ruby <>
Subject Re: Mentor disengagement - a suggestion
Date Tue, 13 Oct 2015 14:31:07 GMT
On Tue, Oct 13, 2015 at 7:19 AM, Jim Jagielski <> wrote:
> For me, I consider being a mentor as I do being a member of a PMC.
> Occasionally one simply lacks cycles to be actively involved, but
> one is involve enough to see that others *ARE* involved, and so I
> am "unconcerned" about my inactivity during those times.
> My understanding is that this is OK and its one of the reasons
> why we *have* multiple mentors.


> "Shaming" inactive mentors would be akin to "shaming" PMC members who
> didn't post on the dev@ list this month, or who didn't vote on a release
> or etc...

I do not advocate shaming.  I do advocate (1) making changes to policy
based on actual data, and (2) using that data to have personal

What spawned this period of introspection was a proposal made
elsewhere that to me seemed like the essence of truthiness[1].  I
would like to replace that, wherever possible, with actual data;
however uncomfortable that might be.  I encourage those that gather
such data to be sensitive when using that data.  In particular, Ted's
noting that I haven't been a visibly active mentor for odftoolkit is
probably something that should have been done privately.  It worked
out fine with me, but it might not with others.

> I am not, of course, referring to mentors who are truly MIA month in and
> month out. But, as someone said, if you remove those from the equation,
> the list of "active" mentors is pretty constant.

I think it would be helpful if we had an accurate picture of
mentorship.  This will help with things like evaluating graduation

> So the question is "Is there a difference or problem between a podling
> with 10 mentors, of which 4 are 'active', as compared to a podling with
> 4 mentors, all of which are 'active'"??

I know many mentors personally.  Knowing which podlings you (Jim) are
on top of makes me comfortable that I can focus elsewhere.  Having me
as a mentor of record on a podling that I am not focusing on may be

- Sam Ruby


>> On Oct 13, 2015, at 2:29 AM, Ted Dunning <> wrote:
>> On Mon, Oct 12, 2015 at 11:05 PM, Sam Ruby <> wrote:
>>>> Sounds like reaching out to the inactive mentors is a great idea and I
>>>> think we have a great example here of how complicated it can be.
>>> Nope.  I posted that link knowing that my name would be on it, and
>>> advocated that we should be having exactly this discussion.  I should
>>> either become more active on this, or (and probably more likely)
>>> remove myself as a mentor for this podling.
>> And possibly by so doing become a great example to others of us who can't
>> admit to ourselves that we are over-extended.
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