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Re: Debian needs more buildds. It has offers. They aren't being accepted.

* Henning Makholm <henning@makholm.net> [2004-02-20 03:13]:
> The final possibility for abuse that remains is if the DAM simply
> stalls an applicant without rejecting him outright. However, unless
> we see concrete evidence to the contrary, I prefer to believe that
> stalling at the DAM stage is caused by hat overload rather than
> malice.

Another important factor is something very human and what we all do:
if you have 2 tasks, one is very hard and one is easy, you often opt
to do the easy task first and the hard one later.  In the meantime,
another easy task pops up, so you do that, and you never carry out the
hard task because there's always something more urgent or easy coming

I'm totally guilty of this behaviour myself.  For example, there was
one applicant who had some misunderstanding about our philosophy.  I
replied to him to clarify as did his AM, he replied but I was still
not satisfied.  This was at the end of November.  However, I was not
sure what to do, or how to clarify.  So I processed other people in
the meantime, not knowing what to do about the other applicant; I felt
guilty for letting him wait, but I just did not know how to further
clarify this issue, and neither did his AM.  In the meantime, I asked
a person from -legal to talk to this applicant and let me know once
he's satisfied with the philosophy, and just today I got a mail saying
it's okay, plus a mail log.  So now I can finally process him.  I
should have referred him to the -legal person back in November, but for
some reason I didn't; and while I feel guilty about it, I think this
is a very human thing.  (It's the same with me as DPL: normally I
respond to mails within a few days, but there were 2-3 mails where it
took me a few months (one specifically was delayed because I did not
know how to say "no" in a nice way.  In the end, I finally found a way
and we came to an agreement).)

So, for full disclosure, currently there are 2 "hard cases" (but not
necessarily rejections) in NM waiting longer than they should have.  I
don't think having more DAMs or a committee would help in this case,

Anyway, back to rejections: one reason a rejection often takes a long
time (e.g. Eray's, who certainly had to wait too long for it (but in
this case you also have to consider that it was the first rejection
ever done)) is simply because it takes a huge amount of effort to
prepare a rejection.  Believe it or not, people are not rejected just
on a whim or based on personal bias.  There is a long process of
observing the applicant, talking to other people to get an impression
what they think of the applicant, see how he fits in with the
community, etc.

(This mail got longer than might have been necessary, and I originally
wasn't sure whether I should reply at all to this paragraph; but I
think people might benefit from seeing things from "the other side"
(i.e. in this case from the perspective of someone heavily involved
in NM and doing this work for 3+ years).  In overall, while NM is
often quite a challenge, I think it has been running quite well in the
last few months.  DAM approval time has gone down considerably,
virtually all applicants precisely know their status, and the number
of applicants with incomplete applications (i.e. we're waiting for
them, rather than they for us) is quite low as well.)
Martin Michlmayr

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