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From Rob Weir <>
Subject Re: An invitation to committers to the OOo Community Forums
Date Thu, 01 Sep 2011 19:14:19 GMT
On Thu, Sep 1, 2011 at 2:56 PM, Terry Ellison <> wrote:
> OK, Rob, I now understand your point.  I will do as you request.  However,
> it seems to me that by making this request you are creating an interesting
> catch-22:  I far as I can see there are two facets to this invitation.
>   * *Sufficiency*.  These forums are closed because this gives the
>     attendees freedom to discuss matters (such as individual poster
>     behaviour) that shouldn't be discussed on a public forum.  We only
>     invite "trusted" forum members to join these lists.  (That's is
>     that they've demonstrated that they are responsible and have built
>     up a body of "karma" with their forum contributions.)  I would
>     have thought that being elected a committer could reasonably be
>     deemed to be sufficient to show such trust.
>   * *Necessity*.  You seem to want to discuss policy on the governance
>     of the forums from within this DL or ooo-private.  I also recall
>     some of your previous comments which indicate that these people
>     (who have committed hundreds if not thousands of hours to
>     supporting this service) do not merit committer status unless they
>     have a wider engagement in the project, and they are therefore
>     excluded from any ooo-private discussions.  Yet, it seems to me
>     that it is entirely reasonable that anyone contributing to this
>     discussion should at least have a working knowledge of how the
>     forums operate in practice and currently govern themselves.  So I
>     do think it necessary as well.

This is incorrect.  We're obviously discussing the policy on the
public list.  We have not discussed this on ooo-private.  Discussion
of policy regarding the treatment of confidential information is
itself not confidential.  In fact, such discussions should probably
always be public.

You are also incorrect in your assumption that volunteers need to
contribute in several areas in order to be committers.  Someone who
makes substantial contributions as a support forum moderator could
make a great committer candidate.  Ditto for a documentation writer, a
tester, a translator, etc.  Committers are not just coders.  It is
about commitment to the project.

You are suggesting two problems:

1) We have forum moderators who understand how the forums work, but
have not made visible contributions to the project yet, so they are
not currently being nominated as committers.

2) We have committers who are not familiar with how the forum operates.

And I'm raising the 3rd issue:

3) How the forum operates  should not be something that occurs in private.

There is a clear solution here:

1) Have those who understand how the forum operates today write this
up in detail as a contribution to the project's website

2) This would help other committers understand how this works and
avoids the newbie problem you are concerned with, though we are
probably not half as dumb as you seem to be assuming.  I, for example,
have run a phpBB board before.

3) This also gives the PPMC and Mentors an opportunity to review the
forum procedures and ensure they conform Apache expectations, etc.
This is something we should be doing anyways.

4) This effort, both in writing up the procedures, and educating the
existing committers, and through this mutual discussion, would
probably be a sufficient sign of commitment to get the moderators who
are do this work to be nominated as project committers.

So a win-win situation, all around.


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