fedora community working group

Paul W. Frields stickster at gmail.com
Wed Jul 7 15:16:39 UTC 2010

Hi Kevin + Rex, sorry for letting this thread sit.

On Thu, Jul 01, 2010 at 11:17:00PM -0600, Kevin Fenzi wrote:
> On Thu, 01 Jul 2010 15:57:56 -0500
> Rex Dieter <rdieter at math.unl.edu> wrote:
> > On the open question of how to discourage/prevent poisonous <foo>, I 
> > suggest doing something similar as was done in the kde project a
> > couple of years ago to help deal with similar issues.  I propose
> > creating something in fedora akin to the 'kde community working
> > group', http://ev.kde.org/workinggroups/cwg.php
> > 
> > I consider it vitally important that everyone in the fedora community 
> > feel safe, know fedora supports them, and that there be a clear
> > contact person/group to go to in cases where they experience any
> > non-excellent behavior.
> > 
> > Now, being excellent has taken us quite a ways, but I think it's time
> > to consider doing better, so...
> I like this as a possibly way to find areas of Fedora where our
> community isn't as welcoming as we all would like and have people that
> can join in and provide positive info and answers (ignoring or letting
> the unwelcoming people drift off to the fringe). 
> I do think we should be carefull here not to empower this group with
> all kinds of punishment ability or enforcement. Negativity feeds on
> more Negativity. ;) 

I know I'm speaking somewhat as a "lame duck" FPL here :-) but before
I'd expect any community members to buy into a code of conduct, they'd
likely want to know (1) what problems the code is intended to solve,
(2) how the code affects people who violate it repeatedly, and (3) how
we tell whether it works or not.

I completely agree that we can't battle negativity with more
negativity.  On the other hand, a code of conduct can't be effective
if it's not enforced in some fashion.  Case in point, the KDE
community group does take remedial action in incremental steps,
starting with mediation and discussion.  In cases of repeat
infractions or escalation, they progress to suspension in some cases.

There have been previous discussions about a code of conduct here and
the consensus at the time seemed to be that community members would
continue to follow it (or not) as they have in the past, whether it
was formalized or not.  And ISTR that some community members were
concerned that laying out rules of proper conduct would create
opportunities for unproductive language-lawyering.  At the same time,
there are certainly problems with the "we know it when we see it"

What happens, in both your views, if someone repeatedly violates a
code of conduct?

> > After speaking with several current members of kde's cwg, they
> > expressed that it was very important to have a clear code of
> > conduct(coc).  Such a coc should focus entirely on what is good and
> > expected, and stay away from what is bad and discouraged.  Another
> > good reference, http://www.kde.org/code-of-conduct/
> I'm not sure about a code of conduct, but the above one is nice. It
> points out things you should try to do/be, not things you cannot do or
> be, which is a good approach. 

I'm still not sold on a code per se, but I agree good ones are
prescriptive rather than proscriptive, like the KDE CoC linked above.
The GNOME CoC is shorter, but still captures many (not all) of the
same points:  http://live.gnome.org/CodeOfConduct

Paul W. Frields                                http://paul.frields.org/
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