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Separate verbs, separate hats: mentor and sponsor (was: Four days)

Asheesh Laroia <asheesh@asheesh.org> writes:

> "I have limited time to sponsor packages. I want to sponsor packages
> from people who have invested serious time in helping Debian users
> answer their questions. So I will pay special attention to mentees who
> show they've answered lots of questions on ask.debian.net."

I don't think I've said so yet, but I need to draw specific attention to
a problem of that terminology. I don't think “mentee” is helping your
argument, and it's confusing the issue.

This mailing list is a forum for mentoring. More-experienced folk can
mentor those with less experience, teaching Debian practice in the
context of specific packaging issues. Ideally, that should be done very
early, long before a package is thought ready to upload.

Being a mentor is not the same as being a sponsor, and this forum is not
specifically about sponsoring nor seeking a sponsor. (It's a good place
to find sponsors, but that's not the purpose.)

Please don't muddy the issue by using “mentor” to refer to sponsoring
packages, and please don't use “mentee” to refer to the maintainer
seeking a sponsor.

If finding a sponsor is difficult, there may be things that can improve
that, or it may be that it's necessarily difficult; I don't think anyone
has yet demonstrated it either way.

If it turns out that ‘debian-mentors’ is not serving the purpose of
packages getting sponsored, I think the solution should not entail
changing ‘debian-mentors’, since that's not the main purpose of this

If people are looking for a forum for beginners and experienced folk to
come together and pass on packaging skills: that's what the
‘debian-mentors’ forum is for, AIUI.

The terms “mentor” and “sponsor” are distinct and, even if they are
sometimes done by the same person, don't refer to the same action. This
forum is specifically about the former activity, and only incidentally
about the latter. If you want mentoring to happen, this is already a
forum for that.

 \      “Contentment is a pearl of great price, and whosoever procures |
  `\        it at the expense of ten thousand desires makes a wise and |
_o__)                                      happy purchase.” —J. Balguy |
Ben Finney

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