[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: planet.debian.org is RC buggy (?)

On Sat, Mar 27, 2010 at 01:39:06PM +0100, Frank Lin PIAT wrote:
> Dear candidates,
> [I don't intend to start a flame war, but I do have venom for planets]
> planet.d.o has became one of the most visible media for Debian, if not
> the most visible one. Do you think it is a good thing?

Not necessarily, but I don't think it's a bad thing either.

[on your questions: I think you're missing the ball. I'll give you a
short answer to each of your questions, and then explain _why_ I think
you're missing the ball]

> DFSG / rc-buggy
> ¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨
> I consider blogs as non-free, proprietary material (a very few have a
> proper license, the "distribution" media s*cks anyway).
> Breaks DFSG #1: A document (HowTo...) published on planet can't be
> distributed in Debian main. Is this a problem?


> Breaks DFSG #3: Derived work aren't allowed. In the few case where it is
> legally possible, it is difficult to merge and publish the updated
> version. Is this a problem?


> Breaks DFSG #2: No source for stuffs like charts and graphs (HTML is a
> valid source here). Is this a problem?


> Opacity
> ¨¨¨¨¨¨¨
> Replying to a blog entry is very difficult. The replies and the original
> posted aren't available side-by-side. The comments aren't available on
> Debian planet (a kind of censorship). Actually, some blog even forbid
> comments! Is this a problem?


> The content isn't archived. Is this a problem? a feature?


> Community
> ¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨
> Do you think Debian Planet 

It's "Planet Debian," not "Debian Planet". The latter is/was a community
site with a whole different purpose.

> reflects the fact that Debian is a community where people collaborate?


> Do you think planet encourage collaboration?

In some cases, yes, but it depends.

For instance, when Stefano Zacchiroli started posting his RCBW blog
posts, many people joined suit. This is one form of collaboration that
was encouraged by Planet Debian, but there are more examples.

> Do you think Debian Planet reflects the fact that Debian encourages to
> constitute teams? Do you think planet encourage that?

Probably not, no.

> Fame
> ¨¨¨¨
> Do you see a shift in recognizing people for their communication skill
> (and/or committed time to communicate), rather that their actual work?


> What would you suggest and/or do?


Let me start off by comparing Planet Debian to mailinglists:

Breaks DFSG#1: a mailinglist post can't necessarily be distributed in
Debian main, either.

Breaks DFSG#3: Derived works aren't necessarily allowed.

Doesn't often break DFSG#2, mainly because mailinglists usually are not
a medium where MIME attachments are welcome. But people sometimes do
post to online resources as part of a discussion, and such resources
often tend to be without source, too.

Some mailinglists are team mailinglists, where of course collaboration
is the whole point of that mailinglist. But others are not; and these do
not necessarily encourage collaboration.

When I say I don't see a shift in recognizing people for their
communication skill, rather than actual work, then that is because
people who were very active on mailinglists /before/ Planet Debian
existed were also easily recognized already, regardless of how much work
they did. So yes, indeed, people who talk a lot are more easily
recognized than people who just work on bugs all the time; but that is
not something that was introduced by Planet Debian.

I do share your belief that replying to a blog can be rather difficult,
depending on the blog used, but I don't share your concern with that.

It is important to remember that a blog and a mailinglist have
completely different purposes. For instance, I would never rant on a
mailinglist; but I do occasionally rant on my blog. Likewise, I would
never try to hold a discussion on a technical matter through my blog;
but this happens all the time, with or without me, on mailinglists.

The point of having a blog is to have an outlet for one's personal
opinions. Though sometimes interesting "discussions" happen on Planet
Debian (more like point-counterpoint things), that is absolutely not its
purpose. A blog aggregator therefore only aggregates the personal
opinions of the people who are on the aggregator, and nothing more.

Sometimes, indeed, announcements regarding technical matters in Debian
occur on blogs. This is wrong; Planet Debian should not be used for
that, rather, the debian-devel-announce and/or any other relevant
mailinglist for the matter at hand should be.

I do not believe that my mere agreement with the social contract and the
DFSG for my computer-related work during off hours should also imply
that my own personal opinions on various subjects -- not just Debian,
but also things as varying as my highly non-free gaming console[1],
tennis[2], and music[3] -- should be released under the DFSG. When I
joined Debian, I did not join a cult; rather, I joined an organization
of people with a common goal of making a Free Software-based operating

It can be useful and interesting to see an aggregation the personal
opinions of individual members of our community; This aggregation is a
good demonstration of how diverse our community really is. But I don't
think we should be requiring free redistribution in everything we do.

Of course, any Debian contributor who wished to redistribute their blog
and/or other writings as a Debian package would of course be welcome to
do so. But I doubt there'd be much interest in that, just as much as
there'd be little interest in distributing mailinglist archives.

[1] http://grep.be/blog/en/computer/hardware/fuck_you_sony
[2] http://grep.be/blog/en/life/tennis/
[3] http://grep.be/blog/en/life/music/

The biometric identification system at the gates of the CIA headquarters
works because there's a guard with a large gun making sure no one is
trying to fool the system.

Attachment: signature.asc
Description: Digital signature

Reply to: