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From Leo Simons <>
Subject Re: Problem with commit rights on Celtixfire
Date Mon, 02 Oct 2006 07:17:29 GMT
On Sep 29, 2006, at 11:06 AM, Mark Little wrote:
> Redhat were one of the supporters of the Celtixfire incubator  
> project and discussed with the proposers to add Kevin Conner and  
> myself to the list of initial commiters. As part of this, our names  
> were included in the proposal. Both Kevin and I are working on  
> Redhat related projects and see a lot of potential collaboration  
> possibilities with Celtixfire.

(Note the ASF process does not really care about which companies  
employ which contributors most of the time. Companies discussing  
amongst them what to do with an ASF project is not something we  
encourage, and in any case, doesn't count as an argument towards  
anything, from an ASF point of view.)

> At the formation of the project all members of the group were asked  
> to submit signed ICLAs, which we did via fax and snail-mail.  
> However, due to a problem with the fax, after 4 weeks they hadn't  
> turned up and we re-submitted. This time, at the start of  
> September, the ICLAs were acknowledged and we were told our  
> commiter status was in the works. However, despite several follow  
> up emails, commiter status was not given and no answer for the  
> delay provided.

Sometimes this kind of thing does happen around here; its part of  
having stuff done by volunteers (who, incidentally, where probably at  
ApacheCon EU, ApacheCon Asia, on holiday, and then probably had loads  
of stuff to do at work). Please remember these events two years from  
now and turn them into a positive by contributing towards improving  
things in this area of the ASF!

> Yesterday we learnt that there has been some internal decision to  
> limit the number of commiters and not take into account the listed  
> individuals on the initial commiters list. Is this normal procedure?

No, but it has sort-of happened before. With harmony, we started with  
no initial committers beyond the project mentors, and that was a  
decision by the mentors.

> Have we been waiting 2 months based on false assumptions? We  
> believed that, as supporters of the submission, we had already gone  
> through the process of arguing who should, or should not, be an  
> initial commiter, so to be presented with a different result (and  
> one which appears to have been conducted behind closed doors) is  
> frustrating.

Quite understandable, it seems your assumptions were correct 2 months  
ago (having your name on an initial committer list obviously tends to  
mean you'll be one of the initial committers!), and aren't correct  
now, and this wasn't communicated well at all. From follow-up I  
understand that your mentors will provide more insight into what  
happened, which you're definitely entitled to (and quite a few people  
around here will definitely want to know, so sending this e-mail was  
a good thing). Further discussion should probably be with them and  
the cxf PPMC.

> Clearly this is not a case of "piling on", as joining the project  
> was discussed with the project submitters prior to the formation of  
> the group.

Hmm. I don't like the "piling on" phrase, it somehow presents this  
picture to me of some stupid lemmings seeing a way to conquer the  
ASF, which is offensive because our contributors aren't like  
lemmings. However, the ASF in general and the incubator in specific  
*is* always concerned about having a "sort of ASF kind of community",  
and experience has shown that big lists of new-to-apache, new-to-the- 
project committers for a new incubator project doesn't always work  
the best way.

CXF is a complex mix of existing code and projects, big ideals, a new  
direction, and oh, it is also an incubating project. It is not easy  
to see exactly how things (are meant to) work there.

> Something seems wrong here; if there was no intention of adding us  
> (and perhaps others we don't know about) as initial commiters, why  
> did the project submitter include us?

I don't know. If I had written the CXF proposal, the only initial  
committers I would have listed would've been the people for whom it  
was quite clear that they had already contributed significantly to  
the codebases (celtix and xfire), who planned to work actively on  
bootstrapping the CXF community, and who had some open source  
experience already.

> On what basis where these accounts not set up?

Again, I don't know. I can tell you that a request for user accounts  
for Carl Trieloff nor Mark Little ever reached root@ (who create  
accounts). Apparently it was mostly a decision by the project's mentors.

> Is random denial of initial commiters typical?

Not at all, in fact I'm confident that's never ever happened. The  
assertion that this decision is "random" is a little offensive. The  
assumption should be that it was a careful decision made in the best  
interest of CXF and the ASF.

Once again, sorry about this frustrating experience for you. I hope  
all the responses provide some more insight into why things happened  
the way they did.


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