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Re: Updating the Policy Editors delegation

Lucas Nussbaum writes ("Updating the Policy Editors delegation"):
> Policy Editors delegation
> =========================
> Task Description
> ----------------
> The Debian Policy team is responsible for maintaining and coordinating
> updates to the Debian Policy Manual and all the other policy documents
> released as part of the "debian-policy" package.
> The Debian Policy Editors:
> - Guide the work on the Debian Policy Manual and related documents as a
>   collaborative process where developers review and second or object to
>   proposals, usually on the debian-policy mailing list [1].
>   [1]: https://lists.debian.org/debian-policy/
> - Count seconds and weight objections to proposals, to determine whether
>   they have reached sufficient consensus to be included, and accept
>   consensual proposals.
> - Reject or refer to the Technical Committee proposals that fail to
>   reach consensus.

I think that the current policy maintenance approach is too
bureaucratic and relies too little on the technical judgement of the
policy editors.  I would like to see the policy editors assess
proposals not only for consensus and support, but also to consider
proposals on their actual merit.  Support (in the form of seconds) and
consensus can be a very helpful guide to the merit of a proposal, and
seeking consensus and second opinions is a very helpful way to avoid
making mistakes, but IMO it is the merit of the proposal that should

My previous understanding was that the current policy process, which
was invented by the policy editors, could be revoked or modified by
them.  For me, this delegation comes rather too close to casting this
process in stone.

Furthermore, I don't think this delegation declaration is
constitutionally appropriate.  The policy editors are, primarily,
maintainers of a package.

The processes for how to maintain a package, and ordinary
maintainership succession, would seem to fall squarely within the
current maintainers' own discretion.  Jurisdiction to adjudicate
package maintainership disputes, and oversight of the decisions of the
policy editors, are explicitly granted to the Technical Committee.

So it seems to me, at the moment, that this delegation is ultra vires
and hence not binding on the policy maintainers.


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