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Re: A summary of some open discussions

From: Samuel Thibault
Subject: Re: A summary of some open discussions
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 2020 18:30:36 +0100
User-agent: NeoMutt/20170609 (1.8.3)

Fixing some facts here.

nylxs, le mer. 08 janv. 2020 10:19:26 -0500, a ecrit:
> On 1/8/20 4:37 AM, Andreas Enge wrote:
> >> All volunteer organizations are top down, even Debian...
> > That is clearly wrong, and well documented for Debian.
> Actually it is correct.  Debian has governance and although it has
> elections and it is clearly top down

You don't seem to have any idea how Debian actually works.

> It is designed with project leaders on top

Not really. There is a project leader, but in practice the leader has
little impact in everyday work: one can create webpages, wikis, new
services etc. at will.

> when systemD was adopted,

The systemd question was not about adoption (adding it to the archive
was really not a concern), but about whether to make it a default/only
choice.  Which is a collective concern, and thus was discusssed
collectively. The leader can help the discussion to happen but in the
end it's a vote which settled what the community wanted to do.

> people were shocked that Debian can have coercive authority

It was not a question of coercion, but to decide collectively which way
we go. Which is what being part of a community is all about. Yes, it
means that people have to follow what was decided. That's also what a
community is about.

> and they broke off and forked over distros

Yes, that's unfortunate, but that can't be helped with. Different goals,
thus different projects.

> [Debian] could NEVER do what GNU does because it gives too much power
> to the project leaders

?? GNU gives *way* more power to its leader than Debian does to its

> the Debian Technical Committee can, in the end, overule and govern

No. It only settles a disagreement between two developers. It does not
govern, it just breaks ties. It is used as less as possible, only when
discussion didn't work in the end.

> the entire OS.

Certainly not the entire OS. I have been for instance working in the
accessibility team completely the way I wanted, creating whatever
repositories, wikis, giving commit access like I wanted. At some point
there was interaction with other pieces of the OS, so discussion was
needed, and they happened directly with the corresponding teams. It
never went through the technical committee or leader. It would only have
been on an unsolved disagreement that we would have had to resort to the
technical committee.

> Meanwhile, go volunteer at the American Museum of Natural History and
> see if you can move the T-Rex around...
> Good luck with that.

Which, to my opinion, is not a good thing. Organizations which can't
evolve go extinct.

> Go tell Linus Tovalds how to run the Linux Kernel... see how fa you get

Linus gives a lot of delegation. In the end he is the last merge point,
but he completely trusts direct subtree maintainers, who can work the
way they wish.


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