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From Benson Margulies <>
Subject Re: Incubator structure (was Re: Vote on personal matters: majority vote vs consensus)
Date Tue, 02 Apr 2013 21:18:51 GMT
Ant is reflecting a real dilemma here. At Apache, we try to be
egalitarian, and we try to work by consensus. The natural conclusion
is that the many people needed to vote on releases are also part of
the decision-making body for policy that controls those releases. The
dilemma is that consensus doesn't always scale so well. Neither does
supervision: when everyone is responsible, no one is responsible.

There are several directions to go to on this. Chris M's proposal
dissolves the IPMC into many, small, egalitarian communities, and
leaves overarching policy for the board and comdev, where it lives for
all the other projects. Ross' proposal sacrifices some egalitarianism
to achieve better scaling of both decision-making and supervision.

Ross' other proposal :-), to move documentation (and thus some/much of
the locus of policy decision) making to comdev, reduces the load of
decision-making that the IPMC has to find consensus on, and thus
proposes to reduce the stress.

I sense that Chris M finds my writing on his proposal frustrating. To
try to do a better job of explaining myself: Chris proposes that this
committee recommend its own demise to the board, to be replaced, in
large part, by the board itself. Every board member who has been heard
from so far has been less than enthusiastic. It's one thing for this
community to self-govern, but self-destruction strikes me as outside
of the mandate. It just strikes me as sideways to seek consensus
inside a community that the community is incapable of reliable
reaching consensus, amongst other things. If I believed that the IPMC
was unfixably nonfunctional in supervision or decision-making, I
wouldn't be seeking a consensus. I'd be reporting my view to the
board, making a recommendation, and asking for direction. That's how I
see my duty as an officer. In other words, if there's something
functional to be the chair of, my job is to be the chair of it. If
there's nothing functional to be the chair of, it's my job to say so,
recognizing that the board might just disagree.

Now that we've cleared up some other matters, I'll try to help us all
discover if we have a consensus on one of these proposals.

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