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Public relations guidelines (was Re: Publicity team review workflow)

Le 2011-08-08 05:33, Jeremiah Foster a écrit :
On Aug 7, 2011, at 20:36, Filipus Klutiero wrote:

Hi Jeremiah,

On 2011-08-05 06:21, Jeremiah Foster wrote:
On Aug 3, 2011, at 19:48, Filipus Klutiero wrote:

Should we change the workflow so that adding an announcement has to be accompanied by a mail to debian-publicity?
No. The workflow is transparent, consensus based, and flexible. It largely mirrors the way Debian works and has gone through a number of iterations and is currently producing a fairly high quality stream of press releases, weekly newsletters and updates, especially for a volunteer organization.
Is the current workflow documented?
I don't see why a new workflow would have to be less transparent, consensus based, and even less flexible (except in the sense that it would be heavier, indeed). Nor why it would not mirror the way Debian works as much.
Heavier is bad.
Well, if among two equally good processes one is heavier than the other, than the lighter one is preferable, yes. I don't think the current workflow has all the good from what I'm proposing though.
There is no obvious reason a reasonable person could point to that requires changing the current workflow.
I guess the review workflow's objective is to improve the quality of Debian's communications. How much the increase should be is hard to say.
The current workflow may give communications a fair "volunteer" quality. But I think we have resources that would enable us to do better than a "volunteer" quality if they are used optimally.

I imagine the level of quality we should aim for depends on the communication. Communications at a small conference may not need too much review.
However, in my opinion content sent on debian-news on behalf of the project should have a minimum quality. Would it make sense to offer reviewing guidelines for content sent on behalf of the project? I'm thinking of a "soft approval", an approval granted passively when a content was (appropriately) sent for review to the publicity team and there is no feedback for a certain time, for example 2 days. This wouldn't be a policy, but a rule of thumb indicating that an author truely writes on behalf of the Project. The author who followed this guideline can say a reasonable effort was made to make sure the content actually represents the project.
You've already added a two day delay on things that sometimes are urgent or need to be "fresh".
As I wrote, 2 days is just an example. Also, as I wrote, I am just proposing a guideline, not a strict policy. This guideline could even be made more flexible. For example, although testing migration takes 10 days by default, we have 4 more urgency levels defined to speed up things. I'm fine having a guideline that suggests less than 2 days of review in some cases, as long as the time available to review is clear for each communication (that is, whoever asks for a review announces the minimum time he's going to wait for reviews).
  This complicates things without any additional "quality".
I may misinterpret what you're saying, but I can't believe that. Reviews clearly improve the quality of our communications. If you really are not convinced that's the case, see the publicity team's VCS repository and the number of commits that just fix issues in announcements being prepared, for example in Project News issues. Reviews (lasting roughly 2 days on average) of Project News issues had a big impact on the quality.
I'm not a communications person, but I suppose other organizations have similar policies.
Either enumerate and suggest best practices from these organizations or perhaps understand that they are often not a true volunteer organization like Debian.
As I wrote, I'm just supposing, I don't know these policies. I found http://www.vascularweb.org/about/policies/Pages/press-release-policy.aspx and http://www.oasis-open.org/news/media_relations_policy.php As for suggesting best practice, that's pretty much what I'm trying to do here. Note that being non-profit is far from being incompatible with caring about PR... Non-profits are mentioned in the first sentence from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_relations Non-profits manned by volunteers may even be the organizations who have the most to gain from PR guidelines, as many enterprises have departments dedicated to PR, while we [largely] have to rely on contributions from everyone.
  Having a formal communications policy is such a heavy weight process and out of scope for Debian. Debian doesn't have the resources for the endless debate that process entails.
Again, I am not suggesting a formal communications policy. I am suggesting to adopt *guidelines* for press releases. And I wouldn't call sending a mail and waiting "heavy weight". I'm not suggesting a bureaucratic approval process, just a minimal "soft approval" (passive) process. If some people want something more conservative, they should feel free to discuss, but I certainly hope my modest suggestion doesn't need an endless debate.

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