Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-project (61 mails)
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Re: [opensuse-project] Proposing a Code of Conduct for openSUSE
- From: Thomas Hertweck <Thomas.Hertweck@xxxxxx>
- Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2008 21:41:03 +0000
- Message-id: <4797B46F.2050506@xxxxxx>
Federico Mena Quintero wrote:
Dear lovers of green, swift-tongued reptiles,
On behalf of the openSUSE Board, I would like to propose the adoption
of a Code of Conduct for openSUSE.
[...] and we would like to propose a
simple, clear Code of Conduct to start fixing this problem.
GNOME has a very simple Code of Conduct , which is based on Ubuntu's.
It can be summarized in four points:
* Be respectful and considerate.
(About avoiding personal attacks or poor behavior due
* Be patient and generous.
(About understanding that people ask for help because
they need it, and avoiding "RTFM" answers)
* Assume people mean well.
(About avoiding knee-jerk responses when you disagree
Do you know what is really ridiculous? It's when somebody who claims to
be an expert and long term SuSE community member (I don't want to
mention any names, but I could) with a track record of violent and rude
behaviour on the opensuse mailinglist (a lot of evidence can be found in
the archive) starts to discuss topics like respect, patience,
generosity, etc. on another mailing list. That's really ridiculous and
shows that all of this hype about code of ethics and code of conduct
isn't valued and these are more or less empty words.
This is the opensuse community and no sect. Everybody with a bit of
brain should know about generally accepted moral and ethic fundamentals.
I understand that some technical rules need to be written down (for
instance quoting guides for opensuse mailing lists, or rules for IRC
channels, etc.), but that we even think we need to write down some basic
things like "treat others with respect" is a sign of regression. It
should be obvious that we need to do that.
Everybody has a bad day from time to time, but some people do always
behave in the same antisocial way and are unwilling to learn and to
accept the opinions and complaints of others (whether it's about rude
behaviour, or trolling, or not doing one's own homework before asking
questions, etc.), or they abuse mailing lists and IRC channels and
forums in another way. Those people should be banned from the opensuse
community (yes, I know it's difficult from a technical point of view),
no matter how significant or insignificant their contributions to
opensuse are. These people damage the reputation of opensuse, and after
some time it's pretty obvious who falls into this category. In such
situations, it doesn't need a voting system or something like that, but
the persons in charge (moderators, operators, etc.) have to take action.
I think most of the time it takes far too long until they take action.
I don't really like the opensuse mailinglist, I prefer the German
opensuse-de. Why? It's fairly simple: on the German list, all the
long-term members and experts usually share the same opinion, they
follow the mailing list rules and behave well, and they manage to show
new members the best way to operate the mailing list. If people are
unwilling to learn or to change unacceptable behaviour, they usually
face a hard time and nobody will answer their questions anymore. Those
people are ignored and usually go away fairly quickly. On the English
list, however, quite a lot of the long-term members and/or people who
claim to be experts are those starting/contributing to OT threads (much
more than others) and/or showing antisocial behaviour. That's really
sad, they should know better. As far as I know (this info was provided
by a Novell employee), many Novell employees didn't want to join the
mailing lists because these mailing lists are inefficient, there are too
many OT threads, and it's hard to follow any serious discussion. They
are right, and I can fully understand when they want to focus on their
work instead of digging through tons of useless emails. Again, it just
highlights that most of the time rules and code of conducts etc. (yes,
there is a rule to avoid OT threads on the opensuse mailinglist!) are
empty words. What really is important is the way we act and what we do
That's my personal opinion and most likely my first and last message in
this thread. There's no need to reply to my email since I don't have a
problem if you disagree with me. I am sure some or many of you will.
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