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From Rob Weir <>
Subject Re: [email] RE: [Discuss] ASF hosted email service [Was: Re: [Discussion]]
Date Sun, 21 Aug 2011 17:12:42 GMT
On Sun, Aug 21, 2011 at 12:31 PM, Terry Ellison <> wrote:
> <snip>
>>> Your svn and Apache (server) response just emphasises our disconnect.
>>>  OOo
>>> is aimed at normal mortals who don't even know what a command prompt is.
>>>  Could you imagine you grandfather, mother or young child wanting to use
>>> either of these?  Fruitcakes and viagra spam on a website are irrelevant
>>> to
>>> the continuance of a mail forwarding service.  Your last point is that we
>>> need a migration / mitigation plan.  On that point +1
>> I agree it there is a disconnect. But I still think you are making a
>> false distinction. The difference between end-user and developer or
>> admin software is in *what* is created. It is not necessarily a
>> difference in *how* it is created. I've worked over 20 years on both
>> kinds of software, open source and proprietary, end user, developer
>> and admin, and they are not developed differently. A quicksort is a
>> quicksort, regardless of whether it is on your iPhone on your server
>> or on the International Space Station. Usability testing is the same
>> whether you are are testing an enterprise system monitoring product or
>> a children's game. Technical writing is the same everywhere. You
>> make assumptions about your audience and you target that background
>> and skill level.
>> I acknowledge that the OpenOffice software is different than
>> Subversion or Apache server. (At least parts of it -- but we do have
>> developer modules, UNO API, etc.) But I think that difference has
>> few implications for how the project is run. In other words, the
>> argument "OpenOffice is different so we need to do it the same way we
>> always did it", is not really a well-founded argument at all.
>> Prefacing an assertion with "The Community will be offended if we
>> change" is similarly not an argument. Obviously a significant part of
>> "the Community" was offended by not changing enough,
>> and they went to LibreOffice. I think in both cases we need to be
>> forward-looking and ask what will best grow the community growing
>> forward, preferably a community that is comfortable working at Apache
>> and ideally is not quite so easily offended.
> Siggghhhh.  I didn't -- and I don't think that I have ever -- said
> "OpenOffice is different, so we need to do it the same way we always did
> it".  Please don't put these words in my mouth.  My point was that a product
> with this breadth of functionality and targeted at a Jo-Bloe-end-user
> community does have different support characteristics from most products
> that Apache has nurtured; we should al least consider the continuity impacts
> if we decide to curtail any existing support service, and mitigate them
> where appropriate.

Support via users lists and forums occurs for all sorts of projects,
end user, developer, admin, whatever.  I don't see a difference there
with OOo.

In any case, I don't see what support has to do with an email
forwarding service.   Support should be done openly/transparently on
user lists and the support forums.  Everything at Apache is done
openly, except for very limited exceptions, like security
vulnerability reporting.

I'll repeat my original comment:

I agree that it is very convenient to have a permanent email
forwarding service provided at no cost by a third party.  But I'm not
seeing how this fits within the ASF's organizational mission.  How
does this help us develop and publish open source software?

Certainly it might be seen as a mark of distinction.  Similarly, being
title "Project Lead of X", or "Member of Engineering Steering
Committee" or "Deputy to the Community Council" are marks of
distinction.  OOo as a project was loaded with such titles, a complex
hierarchy of power blocs.  Apache projects typical don't work that
way, and I'm not eager to reinterpret that kind of project structure
at Apache.

One of the first things I was told at Apache was not to use your email address.  As a committer, you are and individual working
on the project.  You don't bring along your corporate title.  I think
this is important.  But I also think we need to avoid bringing along
legacy OOo titles as well.  And this includes the distinction between
legacy project members and new project members.  Just as I should not
be assuming any prerogatives from working for IBM, I don't think
anyone else should assume the same for being a legacy project
contributor.  I'd like to avoid having this false status symbol of an email address perpetuated in this Apache project. is the trademarked name of the product.  It is not
something we should be allowing thousands of people to use in private
commerce without accountability.


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