[Ambassadors] Red Hat's investments (was Re: Going passive)

Christoph Wickert christoph.wickert at googlemail.com
Wed Nov 10 16:10:36 UTC 2010

Am Dienstag, den 09.11.2010, 23:13 +0100 schrieb Henrik Nordström:

> And I fail to see how it's really relevant what the balance is.

My point was: The amount of work from the community is continuously
rising, the investments by Red Hat - ether by money or manpower - are

> If RedHat is using their parental relation to Fedora to enforce certain
> directions within Fedora against the general will of the community then
> I would be worried, but I have not seen any significant signs of this.

You haven't? Ok, let me show you some signs: 

     1. Fedora EMEA e.V. is being closed down.
     2. Fedora France will likely need to follow. 
     3. Long time contributors like Gerold are stepping down. 
     4. Others are not officially stepping down but simply resigning. I
        don't want to name any names. 
     5. Several Fedora community websites were close down. 
     6. We hardly have any community members that are willing to run for
        the board or Fesco. 
     7. We have nobody to coordinate the elections. 
     8. We nearly had no FUDCon in EMEA this year. 
     9. Fedora 14 has less features than any other Fedora release. 
    10. We have mailing list moderation, threads are getting closed and
        users get unsubscribed. 
    11. We had brilliant community architect in EMEA and his job is
        vacant for more than a year now. We are told that somebody new
        is to come (at least for 20hrs/week), but so far, nothing has
    12. We have groups in Fedora (made of of Red Hat employees) that do
        not listen to the community and do not even listen to the
        (former) FPL. 
    13. 2 Red Hat employees who never contributed to Fedora were
        suddenly given commit access to more than 800 packages without
        previous notification to the package owners. Thanks God this was
    14. Other package owners got a formal letter from Red Hat that they
        had to hand some of their packages over to Red Hat employees as
        they were to become part of RHEL6.
    15. The board defined a new target audience without the community.
        We (e.g. the spins SIG) were given a bunch of questions, we
        replied to them and asked questions in return. We never heard
        back from the board until they came up with their new target
    16. We have a board that makes decisions about things they have no
        idea of and they do not even care to look at it before making a
    17. We need to have a "Community Working Group" to fill the gap
        between the board and the community, but the members of the
        working group are not elected by the community but appointed by
        the board. 
    18. Volunteer contributors have to wait for decisions from bodies
        like FAMSCo, the board or FESCo. 
    19. Volunteers are not getting the support they need from the people
        who are getting paid to work on Fedora. 
    20. We have more and more red tape that makes live hard for our

> Sure, occasionally there is some friction, but nothing major from what I
> can tell, certainly less than whats normal in a parent<->grownup child
> relation of such closeness as the RedHat<->Fedora relation.

It is not occasionally but it has become quite frequently. 

> There is some noticeable friction relating to the Fedora trademark which
> seriously holds back certain aspects of the community, but I doubt the
> last words have been said on that.

So, what do you expect here? My experience has thought me that if there
is a change, it will not be for the better.


P.S.: I'm not going to name any names or details in public as I don't
want to play the blame game. I just want to draw a picture of the
overall situation.
The only person I am naming at this point is Jared. I really have high
hopes and full trust in him. I can't wait to meet with him next week and
I 'm looking forward to a constructive discussion about these issues. 

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