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Re: Packaging Apache OpenOffice

On Thu, Mar 15, 2012 at 11:48:05PM +0800, imacat wrote:
> On 2012/03/15 23:26, Lionel Elie Mamane said:
>> On Thu, Mar 15, 2012 at 11:18:38AM +0800, imacat wrote:
>>>     If you must know, I already made Apache OpenOffice different from
>>> LibreOffice.  See:
>>> http://tinyurl.com/7r86jk5
>>>     I am still trying hard to figure out the complex procedure to
>>> contribute my work back to LibreOffice.  You never know the secret.
>> I personally have found the LibreOffice community to be, as FLOSS
>> developer communities go, *very* welcoming and easy to contribute to.
>> See http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Development#Preparing_patches

>     That's so welcoming and warm!  Unlike that creditable list
> maintainer something (...) made fun of my name (...) said OpenOffice
> is past on a debian-openoffice@ list when I talked about it (...).

"OpenOffice in Debian is past" is his opinion and everyone is allowed
to disagree with it. He ain't the list maintainer, "only" the main
packager of OpenOffice.org (when it existed) and its successor
LibreOffice in Debian. (Yes, I recognise that Apache OpenOffice is
also a successor to OpenOffice.org.)

IMO, Rene certainly is (to say the least) not diplomatic about what he
says and sometimes presents his opinion as fact. Obviously it happens
that his opinion is right, and then his opinion *is* fact :)

This "rough contact" or "rough style" quite assertive style is indeed
more widespread in Debian than I'd prefer, and is probably one of the
reasons Debian has the reputation of being hard to contribute
to. However, this is not the right place to debate that, so I'll stop

Let me try to reword the content of what he's saying in a more
palatable form (or maybe "what I think he should say" instead of "what
he's saying"):

 - Debian, as a culture (an online community), has a very strong
   preference for "real name".

   As far as formalities go, it is mandated for some level of
   "official contributor", those whose GnuPG signature gets a package
   into Debian. If you intend to contribute to Debian without exposing
   your "real name", you'll always have to get your changes and
   packages approved by a sponsor before they enter Debian. This is a
   rather frustrating and limiting way of working, and of the approx
   1000+ Debian contributors, AFAIK only one has made that choice for
   the "real name" reason, and it was a rather controversial event,
   but finally got accepted.

   As far as *informal* things go, we kindly warn you that a
   significant subset of the Debian community has a conscious or
   subconscious tendency of being less trusting of people writing
   under a pseudonym and of taking them less seriously. That's
   factual, independently of whether it is a good thing or a bad
   thing. It is indeed atypical as online/FLOSS communities go.

 - Rene won't do work on packaging Apache OpenOffice for
   Debian. That's his prerogative as a volunteer to choose what he's
   working on.

 - You are free to work on packaging Apache OpenOffice for Debian if
   you want to. You are warned that Rene thinks this is pointless
   because it is impossible, or maybe devilishly hard, to make two
   different forks of OpenOffice.org (namely LibreOffice and Apache
   OpenOffice) in Debian all the while respecting Debian's standard of
   quality codified in the Debian policy. As a community, Debian is
   quite attached to its quality and policy.

   However, if you disagree with that technical assessment and think
   you can package Apache OpenOffice in a way that coexists nicely
   with LibreOffice and respects the spirit of the Debian policy, you
   are free to do so and prove Rene wrong. In that case, he won't
   interfere with your efforts. However, if break the prescriptions of
   the Debian policy in a damageable way, he will report it, as any
   Debian contributor aware of the issue is bound to do. This can keep
   the package from being in a Debian release.

   The formal policy is at http://www.debian.org/doc/debian-policy/
   Be sure to also read the relevant parts of the less formal
   "packaging standards and best practises" in the right column of

If you were to go forward with this, "right of use" of the
debian-openoffice mailing list could be a bone of contention, but I'm
sure we can work out a compromise; either Rene (and other
LibreOffice-in-Debian packagers) take the time to recognise (and
ignore?) the "Apache OpenOffice" related content on this ML, or maybe
you'd be willing to use a to-be-created debian-apache-openoffice or
debian-aoo-maintainers mailing list instead? Hint: creating an
@lists.alioth.debian.org ML is easier than creating an
@lists.debian.org ML.

Best Regards,


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