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Re: Third call for votes for the debian project leader election 2006

[This is not really addressed to Clytie specifically, rather it's a more general mini-essay on this topic.]

Clytie Siddall wrote:
I don't understand why this election is restricted to Debian Developers.

In a certain formal sense, the ability to vote in general resolutions and DPL elections is the defining attribute of a Debian Developer. If you can vote, you are a DD; and if you can't, you aren't. It's rather like the citizenship of a country.

Being a DD also conveys additional but not as fundamental privileges: access to several Debian servers and the ability to upload packages are the most important ones. There has been talk about separating these privileges from developership, but there is no consensus about that.

Being a developer says nothing about what one does in Debian (except that one is expected to do _something_ worthwhile:). There are the package maintainers, some of which are Debian Developers; there are the translators, some of which are Debian Developers; there are the technical writers, some of which are Debian Developers; and so on. (Naturally, these groups of people overlap somewhat, but that's not a very important point.)

Certainly regular contributors ought to be inducted into developership, and disregarding the speed in which it happens, it does generally happen. The process for inducting new developers is called the New _Maintainer_ process mainly for historical reasons.

What about all the other people who regularly contribute time and effort to the Debian project?

If one wants to vote for the President of the United States, one should apply for the US citizenship. If one wants to vote for the DPL, one should apply for Debian developership.

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