Re: Various Branden posts
On Mon, Oct 16, 2000 at 09:31:09AM -0400, Raul Miller wrote:
> > > > I don't know where this came from.
On Mon, Oct 16, 2000 at 01:25:02AM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> > > He told you. It came from <http://www.debian.org/intro/organization>.
> > Are you suggesting that the information didn't come from anywhere prior
> > to appearing on that page?
On Tue, Oct 17, 2000 at 12:49:00AM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> Are you suggesting the Debian website maintainers made it up out of
> whole cloth?
That was a possibility, I suppose.
> It is the responsibility of the people on the technical committee to
> ensure that the website admins have current and correct information.
I don't recall anyone asking on debian-ctte.
In any event, that *particular* error on that page has been handled
already. If there's some kind of general responsibility for other
pages, I suppose I'd better start walking through all the pages looking
> Perhaps you disagree. It amazes me just how little function the
> technical committee actually has; it apparently has no responibility
> to anyone for anything at all.
Sure, the committee is rather unpopular, in the political sense.
It's mostly for dealing with rather horrible snarls where decisions
can't be properly made by any one individual.
However, I'm working on writing up a set of notes for people that want
the committee to take action -- maybe that will make things a bit
> > I posted to debian-vote, months ago, that I didn't think that the GR
> > had a constitutional basis. [It's probably too much to ask that you
> > go look it up, so: my personal belief is that the social contract
> > is more than just a document -- it also represents an agreement
> > between us and our users. The constitution currently leaves the
> > responsibility for changing agreements up to our leader.]
> The Constitution says that adjudication of disputes over
> Constitutional interpretation is up to the Project Secretary, and
> there was in fact just such a dispute over John's GR. Since the PS
> didn't toss out John's GR as unconstitutional, we can assume he
> doesn't interpret it to be so.
> Mind you, if you had done what the Constitution suggests and stepped in to
> handle the PS's duties while he was indisposed, *you* could have canned
> John's GR and made his opponents (and presumably yourself) happier. See?
> Your own apathy towards your duties as technical committee chairman works
> against you, as well.
Eh? Show me the part of the constitution that indicates this?
I can stand in for him while he's gone, which means I can determine
that a vote shouldn't take place -- while he's gone -- but as sone
as he comes back, he's the secretary again.
I *could* have repeated myself while he was gone. And, perhaps I
should have treated his silence as if he was gone. However, I
didn't see that this was all that big of an issue then, and I don't
really understand why you're trying to turn it into a big issue now.
> > If "the antagonists" can "arrange themselves" without addressing
> > that issue, well, I guess I think that it's an excellent thing that
> > they're sick of arguing.
> I guess you didn't understand what I was getting at. Those who were
> militantly for John's GR, and those who were against it, had pretty
> much gotten sick of yelling at each other about it, and everyone
> appeared moderately content to let the issue go to a vote, after which
> we'd have people quit the project in disgust, or keep on working
> (maybe some of both).
Sure -- I was pretty sick of it myself [though I have no intention of
quiting in disgust].
> At any rate, the issue was entirely in the hands of the Project
> Secretary when the debate died down, and no further debate qua debate
> could have expedited the issuance of a ballot. It was the PS's ball
> and he dropped it.
Sure, there's some validity to this viewpoint. Alternatively, you could
say that now that the thing has expired it needs to be tackled afresh.
> > > Did you even bother to read my message about why the proposals should
> > > be regarded as expired?
> > Yep. I think you had an excellent point, there.
> Then I urge you to bring it to the Project Secretary's attention.
I think he saw it.
> > The committee hasn't been acting as a committee, because we haven't
> > seen the need. We have been acting as individuals.
> So it is your understanding that the Constitution requires nothing at
> all of the Technical Committee Chairman, even if the Project Secretary
> is unable to fulfill his duties?
My understanding is that the Technical Committee Chairman is responsible
for the technical integrity of the project (as is the Technical Committee,
and as are all the Developers). If there was a clear issue here that
would affect the technical integrity of the project, I'd have been very
remiss in leaving it alone.
However, my understanding of this issue is that it is primarily political,
and I'm [somewhat] comfortable with the status quo on this issue.
Personally, I'd like to see Debian, or some subset of Debian, or some
affiliate of Debian, devoted purely to free software. I think John's
attempting to achieve something like that, but that he's going about
achieving this the wrong way -- he's ignoring the agreements which Debian
already has, to support non-free software.
But, I think that the choice to rectify this situation lies mostly in
John's hands, and in the hands of the people who have seconded his
Personally, I hope this proposal never gets beyond "further discussion"
in its current form.
> > > Maybe both? After all, this is the committee that can't even see fit
> > > to report the identities of its chairman or membership accurately on
> > > the Debian website.
> > Eh? Now you're saying that the information on that web page came
> > from the committee?
> You're saying it should have come from someplace else?
The committee reported the identity of the chairman, last year. Do you
need me to dig up the post?
I'm saying that this "Ian Jackson is the chairman" thing came from