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Re: [SUMMARY/PROPOSAL] Orphaning another maintainer's packages

On Thu, Oct 25, 2012 at 7:52 PM, Russ Allbery wrote:
> I certainly have no objection to people doing this, but I'm not sure
> that's really what we're discussing here.  I think the thread is more
> about the ongoing issue that we seem to have in Debian where the existing
> procedure for orphaning packages is perceived as too heavy-weight and we
> believe that there are packages that aren't being cared for, aren't
> orphaned, and that someone else would work on if the status were clearer.

It is a proposed solution to the above issue, so it is intimately
apropos to the discussion at hand in my opinion.

> (I'm not entirely convinced that this is as common as people think; I
> think a lot of the largely unmaintained packages are in that state because
> no one else is really motivated to do anything with them either.

An appropriately light-weight solution put more people on a
comfortable path toward helping existing maintainers in these
situations.  Maintainership is a touchy subject.  Some people view
their packages like their own children, and ripping them away via
orphaning can be very hurtful.  So we really want to come up with
solutions that do not impose pain on people with this kind of

Making orphaning more common and bureaucratic is bound to make this
worse and lead to more hurt feelings for those so attached.

> The process you describe sounds more appropriate for a situation like the
> WINE packages were in, where the existing maintainer was overwhelmed but
> still wanted to stay deeply involved in the packaging.

The existing maintainer has a lot of attachment to the package and
doesn't want to give up maintainership, and that's true for a lot of
packages.  Let's not force people out of what they cherish if it's
possible to help them kindly instead.

Best wishes,

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