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Re: to DPL candidates: getting new people to Debian

On 2013-03-11 07:32, Gunnar Wolf wrote:
Riding on Timo Juhani's question (and not yet having read the two
answers that it has already): There was an interesting discussion
(sadly, in a private forum I cannot quote here, but the fact of having

I believe you're referring to the discussion I summarised in http://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2013/01/msg00091.html

So, do you think this demographic shift towards older developers is
harmful to the project, or that it is just a fact and we should not

I don't that that having older developers is harmful in itself, but I think that we should try to take contributions from all groups, including younger people.

We should equally be looking to recruit, for example, more older retired people, where we would certainly benefit from their experience.

How would you intend to attract more young, interested,
talented people?

In the -project thread and my platform I've mentioned a few ideas. I think that all of the points in my reply to Timo (fun, clearer paths in, more active recruitment, better use of local networks, where possible) could be applied to recruiting younger people.

I am aware like you of some LUGs and university computing societies that have faded away, but also of other ones that have grown up in recent years. The activities/interests of typical new student computing groups may be different compared to a few years ago, for example more based around phones and business plans, but I don't think we should assume that no students (for example) would be interested in Debian-related local meetings, if we decided to explicitly reach out to them.

We might also want to look at what Google or Microsoft do to connect to students, and discuss whether similar approaches would be useful for us -- hint: recruitment to position titles that students can put on their CV, and free pizza. Students who get as far as real contributions *can* already put that on their CV, and have a reasonable chance of getting e.g. sponsorship to attend DebConf, but we don't advertise things in that way; and we might also want to offer some kind of local "ambassador" role for students more like those non-free software organisations, or something different but with a similarly low threshold compared to becoming say a DM or DD.


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