On Fri, Mar 27, 2009 at 7:15 AM, David Nalley <david(a)gnsa.us> wrote:
On Thu, Mar 26, 2009 at 11:45 PM, inode0 <inode0(a)gmail.com>
> On Thu, Mar 26, 2009 at 6:14 AM, David Nalley <david(a)gnsa.us> wrote:
>> Essentially it comes down to who we place the initial burden on.
>> Mentoring is needed, but if the current virtually non-existent barrier
>> remains it means that our limited supply of mentors will be incredibly
>> taxed, and possibly with precious little gain.
>> In the course of that discussion a number of things were suggested as
>> prerequisites - a few of which are listed below (not all of them as
>> honestly the discussion is 38 pages worth of text at this point (sans
>> prior email quoting)
>> - has to be a Contributor to another Sub-Project inside Fedora where a
>> sponsor is needed
> I very strongly disagree with this idea for two reasons.
> (1) The notion of a sponsor is inconsistent across Fedora groups.
> Some, like the art team, don't even have a notion of a sponsor. For
> the ambassadors our sponsor, kital, guides new folks through the
> process and then approves them as members. In packaging, as I
> understand their process, the sponsor basically vouches for the new
> member's competence to create packages properly (i.e., has
> demonstrated appropriate skills) and recommends that the community
> accept the new member into the group (which is done by vote). In
> infrastructure as I understand that process the sponsor vouches for
> both skills and trustworthiness.
Some of these points are nits, but I think competence in packaging is
but 1/2 of the process is also proving that you understand the
Community doesn't vote, the sponsor has the authority vested in him to
approve or deny an applicant.
FESCo does vote on proven packager and packaging sponsors to approve them.
I only intended to make one point here, the role of sponsors in
various Fedora groups means different things to different groups. If
the point is to belong to some other part of Fedora then whether it
has sponsorship or not is irrelevant.
> Due to the inconsistent role of the sponsor across Fedora groups I
> think this requirement is arbitrary and meaningless. Being on the art
> team is no less meaningful or important than being a bug triager in my
> (2) While I will not deny that being a member of other FAS groups is a
> good thing, I don't think it defines in any way a good ambassador.
> Someone who spends 90% of his Fedora time helping other Fedora users
> solve their problems in a positive way on IRC and 10% of his time
> promoting Fedora at his local user group meetings deserves in my mind
> to be an ambassador every bit as much as anyone else even if he
> belongs to no other FAS groups. And requiring him to join another
> group that he doesn't want to join just seems silly to me.
I don't think Joerg intended these to be cumulative. Rather that any
of these is sufficient. Yes inherently some of these people. may not
meet this specific criteria, but if an individual is doing work in
Fedora in another aspect that gives them that much better of a
perspective to represent Fedora IMO.
Sure. Someone who spends countless hours in #fedora is better prepared
to be a good ambassador in #fedora than someone who is fixated on
packaging cowsay for example. Belonging to one FAS group and even
being an active contributor in that group buys you something but I
think you are overselling its importance. An ambassador participating
in other FAS groups makes the ambassador a better ambassador. This is
in large part I think because when an ambassador participates in other
groups he looks around through his ambassador eyes. But belonging to
another FAS group has little relation in my mind to becoming a good
ambassador to start with. How many current packagers would make good
ambassadors? I don't know the answer to that question but I suspect
that being a packager is not highly correlated with being a good
ambassador. If it isn't a good indicator I don't think it makes a good
I think it mostly come down to my agreeing with Mathieu. I don't think
lists of required actions and experiences can ever take the place of
human judgment. If these lists are for the benefit of sponsors to help
guide them then it doesn't matter so much to me whether they are
incomplete or contain things I might disagree with in some way. If
they are to be advertised to potential new contributors then I
probably won't ever like the list that results.
>> - is recommended by a Contributor to another Sub-Project
>> who will take mentorship for that person
> Being recommended by another Fedora contributor is a fine endorsement.
> But how can the contributor be the ambassador's mentor when the
> contributor isn't an ambassador?
>> - has contributed to Fedora on a event before
> Has contributed to the Fedora community in some demonstrable way
> before? Has contributed in the role of an ambassador previously in
> some demonstrable way? I don't see any reason to elevate events above
> other ways of contributing.
>> The idea being that this isn't a newbie group.
>> So lets first look at the definition of what a traditional ambassador is:
>> a diplomat of the highest rank; accredited as representative from one
>> country to another
>> In Fedora's case an Ambassador is a liaison to the general public and
>> the open source community and represents the public face of Fedora.
>> While charged with promoting Fedora, Ambassadors are more than PR
>> droids as inherent in bearing the title of Ambassador comes the
>> authority and expectation of getting things done and not just being a
> I still want to allow people to contribute in ways they find
> enjoyable. So if someone wants to be a PR droid by blogging
> incessantly that is cool with me. If someone else wants to do every
> single thing that an ambassador could possibly do that is even cooler.
> I'm ok letting the ambassador decide in what ways they are happy
> contributing. Not everyone can be the Ambassador to the UN. Someone
> might just want to be the Ambassador to Fedora, South Dakota.
I don't care if someone is an Ambassador to the world or an Ambassador
to Liberty, SC (town of 3000) In my mind the standard is good
representation, be that to 5 people or 50,000.
Maybe I don't understand your point exactly. When you say, "...
inherent in bearing the title of Ambassador comes the authority and
expectation of getting things done and not just being a mouthpiece,"
what things is the Ambassador to Fedora, South Dakota expected to get
I think promoting Fedora in that community is enough, that is my
expectation of the ambassador. The ambassador has a world of
opportunity to do more in some locations but I'm really not sure that
>> Looking at the more traditional examples of Ambassadors we
>> to generally be experienced statesmen. They are the highest ranking
>> diplomat sent to foreign entities.
>> The problem that I perceive, and I believe others do as well is that
>> these representatives of the Fedora Project aren't living up to the
>> same level of quality that we expect of Fedora as a distribution, or
>> of the contributors in other portions of Fedora. We have high
>> standards for packagers, art people, etc, and yet we don't for the
>> representatives of the project?
> This is a very compelling statement. Maybe one place to start turning
> this tide is by expressing this point more effectively on the wiki.
> Ambassadors are critical to the mission of the project. Begin to set
> the expectation of what an ambassador is in the first place people
> read about ambassadors.
>> I fully believe that a portion of the problem is our failure to
>> communicate the authority which the Ambassadors are given. Max quoted
>> me in saying that we have a large percentage of people who haven't yet
>> realized that they can take ownership of things in Fedora and I fully
>> believe this to be the case.
>> But more specifically, I perceive a problem in the following areas
>> with a good percentage of new Ambassadors:
>> 1. Lack of knowledge and understanding of the Free/Libre Open Source
>> Software movement and it's philosophies and principles.
>> 2. Lack of knowledge about the Fedora Project, it's goals,
>> foundational believes, structure, and organization.
> Also all points I completely agree with.
>> Please don't misunderstand me, I am not trying to create an elitist
>> group or proposing that we remove existing Ambassadors because they
>> 'aren't up to snuff'. What I am saying is that going forward we need
>> to be able to provide a minimally acceptable quality. Every other
>> subproject has work standards one must meet before being accepted. Why
>> should we not hold ourselves to that same standard?
>> I unfortunately fear that left unchecked our organization will devolve
>> into a social club.
>> Currently, the most arduous task for someone who wants to be n
>> Ambassador is that they acquire a FAS account. I can't imagine many
>> arguing that is enough to qualify them as the highest envoys in the
> I agree with this sentiment but tempered with the realization that
> many ambassadors do all their work in very localized areas and we need
> to not set barriers that prohibit such an arrangement.
Again the standard that I think we attain to is quality
representation. I can't justify lowering the standards in my mind
because a person will only be the face of Fedora to 50 people. Bad
representation is bad representation. What we must guard against is
emplacing arbitrary standards that don't increase quality.
The standards are to prevent bad representation. I'm willing to admit
that in many situations mediocre representation is better than no
representation, and in many locations that will be the choice we get
to begin with. I favor entry level requirements that allow for this.