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From Rob Weir <robw...@apache.org>
Subject [migration] Decision making
Date Thu, 25 Aug 2011 16:46:42 GMT
On Thu, Aug 25, 2011 at 11:58 AM, Terry Ellison <terrye@apache.org> wrote:

<snip>

> We seem to have a Catch-22 here, and this email is about how we break this
> and move these aspects of the project forward.  My interpretation of this
> Catch-22 is that whilst our current interactions on the DL are a good basis
> for individuals articulating views on a particular thread (and some seem to
> generate hundreds of viewpoints) we have no functioning mechanism to move
> to, and adopt some form of, a consensus policy or decision.  The exact

I've noticed this as well.  I think the catch-22 is caused by our
collective lack of experience with Apache-style lazy consensus.  This
fact, combined with the us having more list participants with opinions
than list participants able and willing to help with migration, easily
leads to bikeshedding.   This is easy to work through by applying lazy
consensus.

The term "lazy consensus" perhaps is misunderstood.  It doesn't mean
that everyone agrees with you.  It does it even mean that every
project committer agrees with you.  It means that no committer is
strongly opposed to your proposal and is willing to back up their
opposition with technical arguments and the willingness to implement
an alternative solution.

Lazy consensus does not even mean that you propose the idea first on
the list.  If something is reversalable and you are convinced that no
one would object, then JFDI.  That is the basis of Commit Then Review
(CTR).  Try to avoid unnecessary discussions on the list.  That helps
us all focus on the things that actually require discussion.

However, if you think the idea might be controversial, then go ahead
and post a new [Proposal] thread.  State what *you* would like to do,
and say that you will assume Lazy Consensus if no objects arrive in
72-hours.  But again, objections must be from committers, backed with
technical arguments and the willingness to implement alternatives.

With a list of this many subscribers (over 200 now, I believe) it is
inevitable that every proposal will garner a range of response.  Some
might be even voiced as  +1 or -1.  But these notation are often
misused as well.  +1 should mean, "I strongly agree and am willing to
help".  -1 should mean, "I strongly oppose and am willing to help with
the alternative approach".  Intermediate values like +.5 or -0 or
whatever express various softer opinions [1].

So let's work through this by:

1) Don't ask questions unless you really think something requires a
discussion.  You are a committer.  We voted you in because we trust
you.

2) If you think something requires discussion then post a new
[PROPOSAL] thread, preferably one per separate proposal, and state
that you will assume lazy consensus in 72-hours (or some longer time
period at your discretion).  If you don't get any legitimate -1's by
that point, or get other insights that make you want to reconsider
your proposal, then do it.

3) Those who comment on the proposals should try to respect the
meaning of +1 and -1 and use fractional values to express intermediate
positions.  They should also consider saying nothing.  "Silence is
consent".  You might have what seems to you to be a brilliant insight.
 But is it really so important that you should distract us all with it
right now?  Does it really matter.  Does it matter enough to hold back
the progress of migration, or can we deal with it later?  (I'm as
guilty of this as anyone)

Regards,

-Rob


[1] http://www.apache.org/foundation/voting.html

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