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Re: Canonical list of contributors

Scott Dier dijo [Tue, Jun 01, 2004 at 07:05:37PM -0500]:
> One thing that came up in the Debconf4 NM BOF is that we don't 
> acknowledge our contributors enough.  One suggestion I made is that we 
> should attempt to make a list of contributors who are:

A friend asked me to take some notes from the BOF - I am sharing them
here. I did my best to catch the important points, but I can assure
you I missed some of them, and probably I misunderstood some parts of

- Introduction: Explained why do we have NM, what is it, the main
  criteria and the need for it
- Rob Taylor mentions what we mentioned at debian@br talk yesterday,
  about official Debian contributor. Elmo does not agree, as it just
  adds much burden to the process having a second layer. Rob mentions
  contributors are needed and deserve voting rights - Elmo instantly
  reacts to it, as voting rights should be at the top of the layer.
- Elmo: Some maintainers have too few/simple packages, some
  translators only have done a couple of strings, we need to put the
  bar much higher. Rob agrees.
- Vorlon lists the privileges that a DD has - Mail address, use of
  servers, uploading packages... 
- Some people argue that creating second-class developers will not
  help much. Rob insists it gives recognition to the person.
- Mooch says that, while being sponsored, credit is given in the
  Debian packages. The only needed thing would be to add transparency
  and efficiency to the NM process.
- Elmo agrees that adding a 'contributor' class, with no special
  voting/machine access rights. He notes, though, that this would open
  a can of worms, as people can feel undervalued. Contributers should
  be contributed in the many areas, including in changelogs for bugs
  fixed (+patches), documentation, etc. Contributors could later on
  demand equal rights/treatment
- Probably this whole superstructure could be implemented independent
  of the NM process
- Elmo: The criteria of needing having packages in order to be
  accepted _can_ reject potencially quite valuable elements. Some
  examples of developers starting off small are mentioned.
- Application Managers are a very scarce resource, we have ~20 people
  as AMs, and it is hard to assign people an AM if they are not proven
- Elmo: Sponsorship can be easily abused, and should not be
  encouraged, as a little bit of carelessness can cause the project to
  be compromised. There is no way around it, but it cannot be
  completely avoided. It has been abused for example for NMUs.
- Mooch insists that while being waiting for DAM approval, DAM should
  feedback status information to the applicants. Elmo completely
  agrees, he is working on communicating better with the people. 
- Applicants should also ping the frontdesk, the AMs or the DAM
  (whichever is relevant at each stage) every once in a while if they
  are stuck waiting, as it is in their very interest.
- tbm is working on rewriting the documentation for NM, as it is quite
  out of date. He recently introduced an extra step - Before assigning
  an AM, the frontdesk should check if the applicant's documentation
  is complete.
- Joerg's templates: A big set of questions that the AMs can choose
  from to interrogate their people with. They help filter people that
  don't have the technical skills and cannot look for the questions

Gunnar Wolf - gwolf@gwolf.cx - (+52-55)5630-9700 ext. 1366
PGP key 1024D/8BB527AF 2001-10-23
Fingerprint: 0C79 D2D1 2C4E 9CE4 5973  F800 D80E F35A 8BB5 27AF

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