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Re: 0-day NMUs for RC bugs without activity for 7 days?

On Sat, May 07, 2011 at 12:51:46PM +0200, Jakub Wilk wrote:
> This works both ways. If a NMUer uploaded my package without a delay
> and without a good reason[0], I want to be able to yell at him „you
> are
> a jerk (according to Developers Reference)!”
> Unfortunately, clueless NMUers do exist. :(

It's all a matter of trade-offs. You're right that clueless NMUers do
exist. OTOH very good NMUers that won't go ahead because a policy tell
them not to go ahead exist as well. The question is whether there are
more people in the first camp or people in the second camp. In my
experience with NMUs---both as NMUers and as NMUed maintainer---I tend
to believe in Debian we have way more people on the cautious side than
clueless NMUers.

Ultimately, having an overcautious policy for NMUs has the potential of
blocking bug fixes and evolution in our project. I think we really need
to fight that and that we should tolerate the risk of a handful clueless
NMUers going ahead. Of course, when that happen, we should take good
care of explaining to them why their approach was suboptimal and not in
the best interest of Debian. I believe that way we can in the long run
both increase our culture of doing good NMUs and avoiding overzealous
blockers that will simply delay our procedures and increase frustration
on people that know they can just go ahead and fix a broken package.

But I agree that this policy should not force maintainers of several
packages to ping their bug logs every 7 days, although at the very
minimum I do expect a maintainer to post to an RC bug log at least once
an "I'm on it" message. I've proposed before, for this change, to stress
that the NMUer should do a best effort attempt to verify whether the
maintainer is working on the fix, for instance by looking at VCS head of
the package, asking on IRC, or the like.

Finally, considering this policy has been in effect for 5 years or so,
and considering that devref states guidelines rather than hard rules, I
believe the _practical_ impact of this change would be very low.


Stefano Zacchiroli -o- PhD in Computer Science \ PostDoc @ Univ. Paris 7
zack@{upsilon.cc,pps.jussieu.fr,debian.org} -<>- http://upsilon.cc/zack/
Quando anche i santi ti voltano le spalle, |  .  |. I've fans everywhere
ti resta John Fante -- V. Capossela .......| ..: |.......... -- C. Adams

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