On Mon, Dec 6, 2010 at 23:12, Robyn Bergeron <rbergero(a)redhat.com> wrote:
On 12/06/2010 09:59 AM, Kevin Fenzi wrote:
On Sun, 05 Dec 2010 15:22:54 -0500
Brian Pepple <bpepple(a)fedoraproject.org> wrote:
Didn't see anyone start this discussion yet, so I'll get the ball
Up to this point, we've pretty much only had a motto of 'Be excellent
to each other' as an expectation for a community members behavior.
This has worked pretty well since most of the community has worked
together for many years (a lot from the fedora.us days), but as we've
grown and gotten new blood, I think we've been hurt by not having
some more concrete than a motto for a code of conduct. For my 2￠,
I'd like to see us use KDE's Code of Conduct (1) as a basis for
creating our own.
I'm still not convinced having a code of conduct will help us. ;)
Me either. ;)
* It's more clear and detailed than "Be excellent to each other", so
perhaps some people will read it and realize that they need to be
* It helps us as a project say "hey, we want our community to be nice
and welcoming, if you join and have a poor interaction with someone
thats not what we want"
* Allows us to point to something more concrete when removing or
moderating someone from the community. "You were not excellent" to
"You didn't follow the second section of the 'be respectfull"
+1 to all those things.
* People will language lawyer. "The Code doesn't _say_ I shouldn't call
your mother a llama".
What if the code says not to language lawyer? ;) No seriously, there's
always people who try to misread/-understand the law, still they will
land in jail if the police/judge doesn't agree with his reading of the
* Some people will ignore or note that they didn't sign it or
it, so don't think they should be bound by it.
Add it to the join page, ask mentors to point new contributors to it.
Maybe add it to channel topics, list welcome-msgs. As the code would
also affect non-contributors (e.g. people asking for support in
fedora-list or #fedora) it doesn't make sense to have it signed
anyway. I never signed the law of my home country/country of residence
either, still I have to obey.
* Is it really that much different/better than "Be
excellent" Or "Don't
be a jerk"?
Yes. I have no idea what being excellent means. I think making "your
mother" jokes is an excellent way of having fun in the community.
Seriously, "be excellent" is a nice summary - but people need to be
told what the greater community understands by this. There's
differences due to cultural differences and such. That's what people
refer to as a cultural shock when they travel far away or move
permanently to another country. I'm very sure everyone of you
experienced this in one way or the other. I notice it mostly in
restaurants and shops around the world where you notice different
levels of politeness very quickly.
That said, I could be talked into it... should we try and bring more
people into the discussion? I know some people have stong feelings on
I think that is a reasonable thing to do.
My #1 con (I suppose it is a grouping of cons, in a way): I honestly don't
know how well we can enforce it, if *at all*.
Most of the cited "need" for a code of conduct revolves around mailing list
conduct, and IRC conduct (mostly the former). We cannot prevent anyone from
joining a mailing list, or IRC, over and over and over, using different
addresses, coming from different IP addresses, etc. If someone is bound and
determined to be a thorn in our sides, well, they're going to be.
Right now those people annoy us. You're right that they'll still annoy
us once we enforce a code. But if we enforce again and again people
themselves will get annoyed and vanish, e.g. if they're banned from a
list for the 5th time with their 5th address they are getting too
annoyed to set up a 6th email address just to annoy people.
Same goes for irc channels by the way, where we can enforce that only
registered nicks can join our channels and therefore ban them. In the
wiki and such people are bound to FAS accounts that can be blocked
If we are setting up community behavioral expectations and standards,
people need to sign their names to, they expect them to be executed upon.
If it's something that is, in the end, unenforceable, it reflects poorly
upon everyone - particularly the Board, who would likely wind up losing
credibility in anything else they say in the near term. ("Well, you told us
you could get rid of poisonous people, why should we believe you now?")
My other main gripe with Codes of Conduct is that they, in my opinion, tend
to stifle discussion, because people tend to want to not be confrontational,
because they don't want to get the ban-hammer. I think this tends to just
dull rapid innovation, and that's not something we should be doing (again,
Maybe the code should state it's okay to be confrontational as long as
the language used is not offensive.
I *really* think that before we go crafting things, or talking to
various groups, we should do the following:
1) Determine if any policy we create around a "worst-case scenario" could
actually be enforced. What types of punishment are we dealing with? If it
can't be enforced, 100% of the time, we are just digging ourselves a deeper
hole of problems - are people being favored? Are people not doing their
2) If we determine that a "worst-case scenario" could actually be dealt with
and enforced - who is going to do it, and ARE THEY ACTUALLY GOING TO. We've
had a long-standing policy of "be excellent" - with the Board more or less
responsible for "dealing" with situations - and I am not sure that any of
the situations that could have been dealt with *actually* had action taken.
The moderators should and I know some did do so on the lists.
So IMHO: a code (or rather an etiquette) can improve things without
having bad side-effects. Of course it will take some time until it
works smoothly. And of course the moderators need to actually enforce
Frankly, I'm not sure that we've really *had* any situations
that were so
dire that they required any sort of serious intervention. And that makes me
wonder if we really need one at all.
Bottom line: if it can't be enforced, we shouldn't do it. IMO :)
As such things go, the kde one seems reasonable.
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