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From Pierre Smits <>
Subject Re: Default project guidelines
Date Mon, 10 Sep 2018 07:12:17 GMT
Consensus is a 'potential' outcome, and more often than not regarded as the
'must have'y rule in projects of the ASF: we must have consensus on who
gets privileges to commit, to get PMC privileges...

Achieving consensus for each and every issue arising in a project (whether
it is in the incubator, a tlp, a podling or any other forum like board@ or
community-dev@) is a nice to have on non-code matters, but it should not be
made the goal.

In the case of on- and off-boarding members of the privileged ranks (which
is about merit AND - though many ignore that aspect - personal likes and
dislikes about the prospective member), this 'must have' leads more to
lengthy threads and alienation of contributors, resulting in resentments to
collaborate for the greater good than majority voting.

Every time this 'we *must have* consensus about who gets onboarded' topic -
in whatever way -  is brought forward, my heart cringes as it will bring
forth the voices that smell like dictatorship. Must have consensus can't go
with dissenting viewpoints, majority voting can.

Best regards,

Pierre Smits

*Apache Trafodion <>, Vice President*
*Apache Directory <>, PMC Member*
Apache Incubator <>, committer
*Apache OFBiz <>, contributor (without privileges)
since 2008*
Apache Steve <>, committer

On Mon, Sep 10, 2018 at 8:10 AM, Justin Mclean <>

> Hi,
> > There is a lot of confusion if the approval should be censuses or
> majority for adding or removing people in the various projects
> guidelines/bylaws. Consensus seem more common so I went with that - that
> may be wrong.
> Our docs are not clear on this either [1] states that consensus voting in
> only for code changes (unless stated otherwise) but the page makes no
> mention of what type of voting should be used for adding (or removing)
> committers or PMC members. However here [2] it seems that consensus voting
> is the norm. Other links also imply consensus voting, such as [3], but
> could be just confusing consensus with “consensus voting”. This page [4]
> mentions voting a lot but also neglects to say if it should be consensus or
> majority. Even projects like HTTP use the term consensus when talking about
> voting in PMC members and unanimous vote (an extreme form of consensus)
> when removing them [5].
> No wonder people don’t actually know.
> Practically it may not actually matter which is selected as a -1 usually
> come with a good reason and the out come will be the same, but it would be
> nice to know and have it applied consistently in our documentation.
> Thanks,
> Justin
> 1.
> 2.
> 3.
> 4.
> 5.
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