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From "Gavin McDonald" <>
Subject RE: Making mailing lists useful (was Re: [Proposal])
Date Fri, 12 Aug 2011 17:50:04 GMT

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Rob Weir []
> Sent: Saturday, 13 August 2011 2:46 AM
> To:
> Subject: Re: Making mailing lists useful (was Re: [Proposal])
> On Fri, Aug 12, 2011 at 11:59 AM, Nóirín Plunkett <>
> wrote:
> > On Fri, Aug 12, 2011 at 5:53 PM, Rob Weir <> wrote:
> >> On Fri, Aug 12, 2011 at 11:34 AM, Dennis E. Hamilton
> >> <> wrote:
> >>> -1
> >>>
> >>> Hey, a terrific blow for community there, Rob!
> >>>
> >>> Please don't ever do that again for a matter under active discussion.  Not
> ever.
> >>>
> >>> I urge you to revert those changes.
> >>>
> >>
> >> I disagree.   Bikeshedding on the list is not an impediment to action.
> >>  I implemented one of the proposals discussed on the list. It is in
> >> SVN.  If someone feels strongly, they can revert.  But note that in
> >> CTR, -1's are invalid unless accompanied by technical objections, a
> >> statement of an alternative proposal and a willingness to implement
> >> the alternative.
> >>
> >
> > Reverting should really be a last resort. I had a technical objection,
> > a statement of an alternative proposal, and a willingness to implement
> > the alternative.
> >
> As I said in my original note, if someone wants to move forward the wiki
> approach they are welcome to do that.

You say that, but which 'wiki' are folks talking about?
If it’s the confluence wiki, fine folks can edit now, if it is the MediWiki wiki
then no they are still going to have to wait a week or so before they can edit
that. I suspect some of the people here are waiting for that 'wiki' (which they
like to call a CMS of sorts)

When people talk 'wiki' they should clarify which one.


> If and when they do, we can easily
> add a link to it in the mailing list page.  That was Simon's counter-proposal to
> my proposal.  That would allow the wiki to contain a lengthier list of topic tags
> while still having some presentation of the core idea on the mailing list page.
> There is nothing that I have done that prevents that.  In fact what I've done
> brings us much closer to that approach.
> > Granted, I didn't actually say "-1", but I still think it's pretty
> > poor show. Consensus is not "who commits first, wins", and meaningful
> > discussion that's still ongoing less than 48hrs after you made your
> > proposal hardly constitutes "bikeshedding".
> >
> > I'm going out now, but I hope we can see a little more collaboration
> > and a little less bulldozing in the future.
> >
> If it doesn't break anything and it is easily reversible and it moves things
> forward, then JFDI.  The fact that non-committers on the list may still be
> bikeshedding is not an impediment to a committer moving forward.
> If you look at the list archives you will see many proposals that have been
> raised, discussed a little and then dropped.  They are of the "I propose that
> someone else (not me) do X".  Those are far less useful than the "I would like
> to do X" kinds of proposals.  But even those are unnecessary in most cases.
> The essence of the Apache meritocracy is that it is a do-ocracy.  The direction
> of the project is set by those who step up in do things, not by those who just
> have an opinion on everything.  Opinions are valued of course, but opinions
> backed by code rule the day.
> If a committer wants to do something, and they don't think it will be
> irreversible or controversial, then JFDI.  Don't start a proposal thread merely
> for the sake of it.  Sure, if you really want technical feedback and validation,
> then give a detailed proposal.  But expect, given the 200 people subscribed
> to the list, that you will almost always get a range of responses, including the
> bikeshedding type.  So I'd urge not having discussions on changes, including
> web site changes, unless the committer thinks it necessary.
> We trust committers.  That is why we voted them in as committers.
> This project is going to make very little progress if we continue to discuss into
> paralysis every proposal that someone makes.  JFDI.
> The goal of ooo-dev should be to facilitate getting stuff done.  It should not
> be to have the greatest number of discussions.  Less discussion and more
> progress is a good thing.
> Also, it would be good if we were a but more nuanced in our opinions, where
> we do offer them.  It is not all +1 or -1.  There are gradations in between
> including things like:
>     +0: 'I don't feel strongly about it, but I'm okay with this.'
>     -0: 'I won't get in the way, but I'd rather we didn't do this.'
>     -0.5: 'I don't like this idea, but I can't find any rational justification for my
> feelings.'
>     ++1: 'Wow! I like this! Let's do it!'
>     -0.9: 'I really don't like this, but I'm not going to stand in the way if
> everyone else wants to go ahead with it.'
>     +0.9: 'This is a cool idea and i like it, but I don't have time/the skills
> necessary to help out.'
> See:
> In any case, there are 9999 other web pages to discuss and reach consensus
> on.  Does anyone care to open a new thread on the next one?
>  ;-)
> -Rob
> > Noirin
> >

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