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Re: Fear the new maintainer process

Marcus.Brinkmann@ruhr-uni-bochum.de (Marcus Brinkmann) wrote:

> We should just not actively throw [applicants] out if the reply takes
> long.  The process should allow for random delays on both sides,
> otherwise there is something wrong.

I don't see anything wrong with a reasonable deadline.  The applicant
can always ask for an extension.

> And WHAT makes you think that a delay is a sign of "limited interest"?

Experience, and common sense.  Usually, those who do not reply promptly
do not end up being good maintainers.

> Jason Gunthorpe wrote:

> > IMHO if someone cannot be bothered to respond to NM in a timely
> > maner then maybe they really don't have time/desire to contribute to
> > Debian.

> Do you only want a reply, or do you want a substantial reply?

A simple reply would be sufficient.  It would be nice if the applicant
included a small comment explaining his reasons for the delay.

> Of course, everybody can say "I am still alive" if he is [able] to
> reach his email for a while, ...

Yes.  That is what we want.

> ... but what if the delay is because someone need to get hold of a
> scanner for the ID, ...

Then explain that to the new maintainer team and ask for an extension.
At least let them know the reason for the delay.

> or because he became ill, or whatever?

This is an acceptable excuse, but it should be rare -- an exception to
standard procedure.  Unless, of course, you are expecting a plague to
sweep through our applicants.

> It is amazing that you can't imagine what circumstances in real life
> can lead to a reply.
> * A broken arm, maybe.

A very rare occurrence, I should think.

> * A serious mayhem at work.
> * A long holiday.

That is NOT an excuse for not sending a reply.  For goodness sake, he
should have asked for an extension.

> * Not having all the pieces together necessary for the reply.
>   (scanned photo ids etc).

Then the applicant should send a small reply explaining this.

> Even if you don't see any connections, and agree with the general
> principles of the new maintainer procedure, you still have to answer
> the question: What is so extremely troublesome with waiting for
> several months before closing a record? And can those reasons be fixed
> by modyfing the procedure to allow that?

But what kind of developer would he make?  Do not forget, being in
Debian means more that just being able to say "I'm a Debian developer."
It means responsibility.  Usually, it means maintaining a package, which
involves tracking the upstream sources and answering bug reports.  If
this person cannot be troubled to respond to the IMPORTANT stuff (and
I'd say that joining the project is fairly important), then how can we
expect him to do his job responsibly?  Answer me that.

> You are playing very lightly with the volunteer effort offered to
> Debian.

Sure, Debian is a volunteer effort; however, I would like to see our
volunteers take their responsibility seriously.  We have high standards
for our software; why shouldn't we also have high standards for our
people as well?  All we gain by excessively relaxing our standards is
sloppy maintainers who will turn out a sloppy product.

> I hope that other people show more responsibility towards the project.

You expect us to show MORE responsibility towards the project by
demanding LESS responsibility from those who want to join the project.
How ironic.

> I am getting the feeling that some (many?) people around here are
> trying to effectively close up Debian by trying to find ways to
> effectively accept less maintainers without saying so. This continues
> the "the boat is full" attitude that was omnipresent in the last long
> discussion about this issue in autumn last year.

This discussion is not about closing the new maintainer process.  It's
about having some reasonable expectations from our applicants.

- Brian

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