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Bug#422750: marked as done (developers-reference: should not suggest passive voice or that scientific publications always avoid first person)

Your message dated Thu, 28 Feb 2008 11:47:03 +0000
with message-id <E1JUhE7-00078j-7S@ries.debian.org>
and subject line Bug#422750: fixed in developers-reference 3.3.9
has caused the Debian Bug report #422750,
regarding developers-reference: should not suggest passive voice or that scientific publications always avoid first person
to be marked as done.

This means that you claim that the problem has been dealt with.
If this is not the case it is now your responsibility to reopen the
Bug report if necessary, and/or fix the problem forthwith.

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422750: http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=422750
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--- Begin Message ---
Package: developers-reference
Severity: minor

Section reads:

> Do not use first person
> You should avoid the use of first person ("I will do this..." or "We
> recommend..."). The computer is not a person and the Debconf templates do
> not speak for the Debian developers. You should use neutral construction and
> often the passive form. Those of you who already wrote scientific
> publications, just write your templates like you would write a scientific
> paper.

This should not recommend the use of the passive voice; active voice does not
require anthropomorphizing the computer.  For example, "enable this if ..."
and "disable this if ...", as opposed to "this can be enabled if ..." and
"this can be disabled if ...".

This should also not suggest that all scientific publications use passive
voice or impersonal style.  For some reason, many people get taught that
scientific publications should always use passive voice and impersonal style;
however, many other people do not subscribe to this viewpoint.  Some journals,
such as Nature (see
http://www.nature.com/authors/author_services/how_write.html ), specifically
recommend the use of the active voice.

I suggest removing all but the first two sentences, resulting in the

> Do not use first person
> You should avoid the use of first person ("I will do this..." or "We
> recommend..."). The computer is not a person and the Debconf templates do
> not speak for the Debian developers.

Ideally, I think another subsection of 6.5.2 should exist, explicitly
recommending the use of active voice.  Something like this:

> 6.5.2.N Use active voice
> Write in the active voice, and avoid the passive voice.  For example, write
> "Enable this if ..." rather than "This can be enabled if ...".

- Josh Triplett

-- System Information:
Debian Release: lenny/sid
  APT prefers unstable
  APT policy: (500, 'unstable'), (1, 'experimental')
Architecture: i386 (i686)

Kernel: Linux 2.6.18-josh (PREEMPT)
Locale: LANG=en_US.UTF-8, LC_CTYPE=en_US.UTF-8 (charmap=UTF-8)
Shell: /bin/sh linked to /bin/bash

--- End Message ---
--- Begin Message ---
Source: developers-reference
Source-Version: 3.3.9

We believe that the bug you reported is fixed in the latest version of
developers-reference, which is due to be installed in the Debian FTP archive:

  to pool/main/d/developers-reference/developers-reference-fr_3.3.9_all.deb
  to pool/main/d/developers-reference/developers-reference_3.3.9.dsc
  to pool/main/d/developers-reference/developers-reference_3.3.9.tar.gz
  to pool/main/d/developers-reference/developers-reference_3.3.9_all.deb

A summary of the changes between this version and the previous one is

Thank you for reporting the bug, which will now be closed.  If you
have further comments please address them to 422750@bugs.debian.org,
and the maintainer will reopen the bug report if appropriate.

Debian distribution maintenance software
W. Martin Borgert <debacle@debian.org> (supplier of updated developers-reference package)

(This message was generated automatically at their request; if you
believe that there is a problem with it please contact the archive
administrators by mailing ftpmaster@debian.org)

Hash: SHA1

Format: 1.7
Date: Thu, 28 Feb 2008 10:16:40 +0000
Source: developers-reference
Binary: developers-reference developers-reference-fr
Architecture: source all
Version: 3.3.9
Distribution: unstable
Urgency: low
Maintainer: Debian Documentation Project <debian-doc@lists.debian.org>
Changed-By: W. Martin Borgert <debacle@debian.org>
 developers-reference - guidelines and information for Debian developers
 developers-reference-fr - guidelines and information for Debian developers, in French
Closes: 356720 373816 374220 384178 391023 401415 405453 405818 410159 412757 413320 414291 419507 420540 422750 427832 428846 445642
 developers-reference (3.3.9) unstable; urgency=low
   [ Andreas Barth ]
   * Packaging changes:
     - bump standards-version to 3.7.3 (no change)
     - fix debian/copyright
     - move debhelper to Build-Depends.
     - add pdf for French version.
   * Document changes to stable release management. Closes: #414291
   * Debconf error templates no longer discouraged. Thanks,
     Christian Perrier. Closes: #427832
   * Keyring now uses RT. Closes: #428846
   * Document -dbg-packages within BPs. Thanks, Joey Hess. Closes: #420540
   * NMUs now also close bugs. Thanks, Lucas Nussbaum. Closes: #419507
   * Fix documentation about gender neutral. Closes: #384178
   * Fix typo. Closes: #405453
   * More details on how to write documentation. Thanks, Josh Triplett.
     Closes: #422750
   * Add XS-Vcs-*. Thanks to Stefano Zacchiroli. Closes: #391023
   * Small brushup to debconf description. Thanks, Thomas Huriaux.
     Closes: #401415
   * Document Team-Maintainence better. Thanks, Lucas Nussbaum.
     Closes: #410159
   * Add link to more removal ressources. Thanks, Adam D. Barratt,
     Justin Pryzby. Closes: #412757, #356720
   * Repacking source packages need to be documented in copyright.
     Thanks, Russ Allbery. Closes: #413320
   * Better describe version of debian native packages NMUs. Closes: #405818
   * Source, HTML and text are now encoded in UTF-8. Thanks, Jörg Sommer.
     Closes: #373816
   * Source is now DocBook XML instead of debiandoc. Closes: #374220
   [ Raphael Hertzog ]
   * Add a link to enrico's excellent Debian Community Guidelines.
   * Recommend the use of DSA's request tracker instead of mailing them.
   * Remove reference to #debian-sf, #debian-bsd which don't exist anymore. Put
     a reference to #debian-dpkg instead.
   * Remove all stuff concerning non-US.
   * Update information concerning Alioth.
   * Update information concerning the Package Tracking System.
   * Mention Alioth as the main resource for VCS repositories and deprecate
   * Remove XS- prefix for Vcs-* fields since dpkg now supports them.
   * Document the Homepage field. Thanks, Christian Perrier. Closes:
   * Add Vcs-Svn and Vcs-Browser fields pointing to the new SVN
 f3b140613997b6255f00cff2e0652485 866 doc optional developers-reference_3.3.9.dsc
 feb746b3608063b4994472866f39709e 871922 doc optional developers-reference_3.3.9.tar.gz
 4f4292fe8246f1338115266a7ff61349 660596 doc optional developers-reference_3.3.9_all.deb
 72e49ae1cd934ebaaf411beb7852214d 663386 doc optional developers-reference-fr_3.3.9_all.deb

Version: GnuPG v1.4.6 (GNU/Linux)


--- End Message ---

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