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Re: Advocating Ben Finney <ben+debian@benfinney.id.au>

On Tue, Feb 16, 2010 at 07:51:02AM +1300, martin f krafft wrote:
> also sprach Raphael Hertzog <hertzog@debian.org> [2010.02.15.2224 +1300]:
> > I'm not sure I agree with this. He has been active on the lists
> > for sure but not always for the best in my memory. I seem to
> > remember a tendency to have very strong & bold opinion when it
> > comes to DFSG freenees and license questions. In those cases, he
> > tends to participate too much in the thread.

> > I certainly fear that he would be more aggressive imposing his
> > opinion on this topic once he's DD.

> I have not followed the mailing lists much lately, so I didn't know
> this at the time of my advocation. Arguably, I should have sought
> more information, but between 7 other advocates and my own memories,
> I didn't think it was possible.

> I have since struck up conversation with Ben to get his opinion on
> the matter. I will discuss this with him further. Ideally, the
> current situation can be a catalyst to make him realise the
> concerns.

> However, I certainly don't remember verbosity and opinion to be
> a reason in the past to eject DDs, so I don't see it as a sufficient
> reason to preclude people from becoming DDs. We are all opinionated,
> and at the same time, we provide a forum where everyone can learn.

But your advocation mail seems to break down into:

 - other DDs who've sponsored him are happy with his work
 - you've uploaded one of his packages and it was good
 - he's active on lists

The first is hearsay; the second, by your own admission, is insufficient on
its own to warrant advocacy; and the third is not a reason to approve
someone as a DD.  Mailing list activity is not something we should select
for in project membership!

I am certainly in favor of giving people a forum in which to learn.  But
posting to lists is no evidence of someone learning (in Ben's case, he seems
more often to be pontificating than inquiring, which is not a mark of active
learning), nor is "he's learning" the standard by which we should judge
people ready to be accepted as DDs.  The standard should be "he knows what
he's doing".

I don't personally have any evidence at all that Ben knows what he's doing.
I only have evidence that he talks a lot, often in a tone that suggests he
has authoritative knowledge on a subject that he does not.  I don't want to
see a(nother) person who takes that approach to list discourse lended
credibility by being confirmed as a DD.

Message IDs of example posts that I think indicate Ben should read more and
write less:


> > PS: And he complains when he's CCed on lists. :-)

> It *is* mailing list policy after all. ;)

No, the mailing list policy is to not whine on the lists when someone
doesn't respect your preference regarding CCs.

Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
Ubuntu Developer                                    http://www.debian.org/
slangasek@ubuntu.com                                     vorlon@debian.org

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