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From "Dennis E. Hamilton" <>
Subject RE: Off topic
Date Sun, 18 Dec 2011 21:52:35 GMT
I'm reluctant to add any chaff to the threads that are running around here.

Yet, related to Jean's point, it is important to internalize that here in Apache territory,
forking is a feature, not a failure.

It might be a failure of someone's ambitions, but that is for them to sort out.  Adopting
an Open Source development and licensing model has built-in consequences.  It is the nature
of the beast.

If there is some measure that failed to be achieved, it would be useful to know whether that
is *our* measure and what are the lessons learned.  And forking will remain a feature.

 - Dennis


Under the Corporate Governance that nurtured, there was considerable investment
and especially undertakings provided with paid staffs and budgets (including, especially,
marketing perhaps).  There was also ownership of the copyright.

Now, by virtue of the copyright ownership, the Apache OpenOffice project is possible.  

But the absence of the corporate governance and the resources and facilities it provided,
there is much that needs to be backfilled or recovered in some other manner.  Some of those
missings (dare I mention marketing again) involved spending money and it is in the nature
of the Apache Software Foundation that such spending by ASF is rather (dare I say "extremely")
unlikely, and project-external efforts are the alternative.  That is likewise the case for
the way Team was connected to in the past, along with other
"NGOs" that collected donations for whatever purpose.  And if developers here have paid support,
it is not from Apache, but external sources.  So be it.

There are different opportunities for down-/side-stream undertakings that are prepared to
play nice with Apache releases and the Apache OpenOffice project.  It takes out-of-the-box
creative thinking.  Here, past is not so much prologue.

-----Original Message-----
From: Rob Weir [] 
Sent: Sunday, December 18, 2011 13:00
Subject: Re: Off topic

On Sun, Dec 18, 2011 at 3:33 PM, Jean Weber <> wrote:
> On Mon, Dec 19, 2011 at 05:48, Rob Weir <> wrote:
>> On Sun, Dec 18, 2011 at 2:21 PM, Rory O'Farrell <> wrote:
>>> On Sun, 18 Dec 2011 13:31:19 -0500
>>> Rob Weir <> wrote:
>>>> On Sun, Dec 18, 2011 at 12:59 PM, Ian Lynch
>>>> <> wrote:
>>>> <snip>
>>>> > Well one thing that definitely didn't work in the past was
>>>> > alienating community members with ill-thought out arguments
>>>> > no matter how logical those arguments might appear to an
>>>> > individual. The community is made of people with emotions and
>>>> > that is why brute logic is often a very ineffective tool.
>>>> >
>>>> And the community is also made up of members who think
>>>> logically. Emotional responses, denying inconvenient truths,
>>>> reinventing history, and other tribal responses are ineffective
>>>> tools that can also alienate community members.
>>>> -Rob
>>> Quite honestly I am astounded at the amount of infighting and
>>> petty point-scoring that goes on on the Apache OpenOffice
>>> lists.  Are you grown, rational beings, or sub teen children?
>>> Get your act together, or the AOOo project is doomed.
>> So what point are you trying to score with, Rory?  What were you
>> trying to accomplish with your name calling?  What are you adding to
>> the conversation?
>> I think part of the problem is that some members of this list do not
>> appreciate the fact that the growth of this project is not going to
>> occur exclusively or even predominately from legacy OOo participants.
>> Growth is going to come from:
>> 1) Re-engaging with legacy OOo participants who did not go over to LibreOffice.
>> 2) Engaging those who were never involved in OOo in the first place.
>> 3) Encouraging LibreOffice participants to get engaged.
>> Each of these groups come with a different perspective and a different
>> set of concerns.  But I think it is obvious that categories 2) and 3)
>> are not going to be very receptive to assertions that the legacy
>> project was entirely wonderful, free from problems and should be
>> emulated in all respects.  In fact, such an attitude will raise red
>> flags with them and discourage them from getting involved.
>> I understand that needless and senseless criticism of the legacy
>> project will also be a turn-off for category 1).  So let's not do
>> that.  But let's not make the opposite mistake either.  Let's have an
>> honest dialog about what went well and what didn't.  We all know that
>> the situation was bad enough that large numbers of volunteers went to
>> LibreOffice.  If we ignore that fact or just say that this was done
>> for illogical or non-consequential reasons, then we're not being
>> honest with ourselves and will not be making the necessary changes to
>> improve.
>> -Rob
> To many people, there is a major difference between talking about
> "what went well and what didn't" (or "what worked and what didn't")
> and calling something a "failure". The latter term typically leads to
> the sort of unhelpful discussion recently seen on this thread; the
> former is far more likely to elicit constructive discussion.

Failure is an outcome, or at least a way of labeling an outcome.
Maybe not the only way of describing it.  There may be other,
euphemistic ways to describe the outcome that consists of a large
portion of the community leaving for LibreOffice and the corporate
sponsor pulling out and laying off the core engineering staff for that
project.  We could call it a "transition",a "temporary setback", a
"challenge", an "opportunity" a "reboot", or whatever you wish.

But whatever you call it, the outcome was not good and we should be
sure we understand and avoid reinstitutionalizing the same causes.

If someone has a recommended euphemism, please let me know and I will
adopt it in future.


> --Jean

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