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From Mark Struberg <>
Subject Re: [DISCUSS] Apache NetBeans Incubator Proposal
Date Sat, 24 Sep 2016 07:37:57 GMT

Consider you did contribute 300 important patches to NetBeans over the years. Wouldn't it
hurt your feelings that you are not enlisted on the initial committers list?

But otoh the initial list of committers is not important for the ASF _if_ the PPMC makes a
good job.
Because if such a person comes knocking then some of the 'old' NetBeans lords&ladies will
hopefully recognise the person and any other PPMC member will at least check the commit history
for his/hers contributions.

And if someone shows up who already contributed lots of good things in the past and would
like to become active again, then it's just a matter of 72h (VOTE time) to get him on board.

BUT: we must clearly communicate that we start with a limited committer list simply because
WE fail to compose a correct one from the very start. But people should know that we will
fix this list over time.


> On Saturday, 24 September 2016, 7:46, Emilian Bold <> wrote:
> > So on one hand the initial commiters list is not something so important and
> we should realy just be careful about the PPMC then vote more commiters
> during incubation.
> On the other hand the initial commiters list is super important.
> Is there some actual incubation documentation clearing this up?
> I think it's a big administrative task to compile a perfect list. It's 
> not
> only about who has commit rights on the current repository, there are also
> many that contribute good patches via Bugzilla, etc.
> Also, each individual would have to be contacted and agree to be on the
> list which also implicitly means they will sign the Apache CLA.
> I do not believe the initial commiters list could fracture the community as
> long as we provide a clear path to become a commiter.
> I maintained a NetBeans fork for a customer but it was a lot of work to
> backport fixes, etc. Nobody is going to go through all that trouble just
> out of spite because they were not on the initial commiter's list.
> --emi
> On Sat, Sep 24, 2016 at 2:25 AM, Roman Shaposhnik <>
> wrote:
>>  On Thu, Sep 22, 2016 at 1:48 AM, Bertrand Delacretaz
>>  <> wrote:
>>  > Hi Wade,
>>  >
>>  > On Wed, Sep 21, 2016 at 11:38 PM, Wade Chandler
>>  > <> wrote:
>>  >> ..I can say as a long time contributor who is not on the initial 
> list, I
>>  >> understand, think it is fine, and agree that being added once we 
> get
>>  into
>>  >> the actual incubation phase makes sense...
>>  >
>>  > Thanks!
>>  >
>>  > As someone who has mentored several projects here in the last ten
>>  > years or so I think although people sometimes see a lot of value in
>>  > being on the initial committers list they should not, IMO.
>>  >
>>  > What very often happens during incubation is some people who were on
>>  > this list almost never contribute to the project, and other expected
>>  > or unexpected people show up, do great things and get elected as a
>>  > result.
>>  >
>>  > Also, as mentor I will recommend reviewing the list of committers and
>>  > PMC members shortly before graduation, to give the opportunity to
>>  > people who didn't actually become active to gracefully retire - if 
> the
>>  > project governance works it's easy to come back later by becoming
>>  > active, and the project benefits from having a roster that reflects
>>  > the reality of active contributors.
>>  >
>>  > So in summary people shouldn't put too much value on the initial 
> list
>>  > of committers, it's just that - an initial list, a kind of draft 
> that
>>  > will evolve during incubation, and probably evolve a lot for a large
>>  > project such as NetBeans.
>>  Well, but they do. In fact, when I was a VP of Incubator a few years
>>  ago I had to deal with a formal escalation brought to the ASF level
>>  by somebody who felt unduly left out of that initial list of committers.
>>  If the code one wrote is going into ASF -- and especially if it is a
>>  non-trivial amount of code, one can certainly expect some considerations.
>>  This is the same principle as ASF postulates when we say that we
>>  don't fork the communities. We truly don't. That's why for a 
> project
>>  as large as NetBeans I think it is important for us to inquire what
>>  kind of due diligence was done to get the list of initial committers
>>  just right. Otherwise it is going to be OpenOffice vs. LibreOffice
>>  type of situation all over again (not that commiters was the key
>>  issue there -- but you catch my drift).
>>  >> ...I am able to contribute as much as I can at this stage 
> anyways...
>>  >
>>  > Indeed, and that stays true once incubation starts. Even though an
>>  > Apache PMC ultimately makes all the project decisions, they are
>>  > expected to listen to their community. The "community" 
> section at
>>  >
>>  maturity-model.html
>>  > expresses that.
>>  Right. And all I want to get out folks on this thread at this point is two
>>  things:
>>   #1 admission that past contributions will be valued a LOT when it
>>        comes to somebody requesting to be added as a committer to the
>>        project during incubation
>>   #2 a bit of explanation of what was the process to arrive at initial list
>>  of
>>        committers
>>  >> ...getting into building a thorough list before hand will
>>  >> certainly take time away from higher priority items at this 
> stage...
>>  >
>>  > Yes, that's why the NetBeans mentors pushed to avoid adding people 
> to
>>  > the list of initial committers before the incubation vote starts, as
>>  > for a popular project that's a lot of work with no real value as
>>  > mentioned above.
>>  I disagree. Like I said -- being a VP of incubator having to deal with
>>  that type of escalation was not a fun place to be in.
>>  Thanks,
>>  Roman.
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