Meeting summary/minutes for 2010-03-09 FESCo meeting

Stephen John Smoogen smooge at
Wed Mar 10 02:25:18 UTC 2010

On Tue, Mar 9, 2010 at 5:05 PM, Jonathan Underwood
<jonathan.underwood at> wrote:
> On 9 March 2010 21:54, Bill Nottingham <notting at> wrote:
>> ===================================
>> #fedora-meeting: FESCO (2010-03-09)
>> ===================================
>> Meeting started by nirik at 20:00:01 UTC. The full logs are available at
> [snip]
> Wow. That has to be the most depressing and apalling read ever -
> seeing FESCo, the steering committee of a project which has done so
> much good and made so much progress, tear strips off each other like
> that. If FESCo is this dysfunctional, I really think there's a problem
> larger than the number of regressions in our updates. FESCo, you
> really need to start working together, you're presently not doing the
> job you were elected to do.

I would put it as much to the medium as with the participants. The
participants seem to have known how to hit each others buttons and the
medium (IRC) only enhanced the divisiveness versus tampered it down.
The downfall of IRC meetings is that everyone talks over each one and
the person who writes the quickest seems to 'emotionally' win.
Eventually everyone thinks someone else is out-yelling them and goes

Email is just as bad as any sort of editing anothers email in reply
will be viewed as selective and intentionally damning the other party
whether that was the original intention or not. In either case,
reasoning is put at the curb and emotional jabs and taunts become the

I can only say this emphasized the reasons why even the libertarian
Vikings had rules of etiquette for speaking at a common circle. Well
ok their arguments ended up with people being skewered on an atgeir...
but that was de constructive enough.

I am NOT (I must emphasize this) advocating that we institute Robert's
Rules of Order for meetings. The need to have trained parliamentarians
would make the current bureaucracy of CLA's, bodhi, etc seem like a
drop in the pan.

However, I think that for such contentious debates should look at
something like this:

1. One Speaker Speaks at a Time

2. One Question Is Decided at a Time.

3. The Speaker Must Be Respectful.

4. Everyone's Rights Are Protected by Balancing Them with Each Other.

I do not think that this is something every meeting needs to have
these rules.. but when needed these rules maintain the "Be Most
Excellent to Each Other." that we all can forget.

Yes it slows things down but sometimes that is what is needed in order
for something to be accomplished.

[And to be clear, the words above use heavily overloaded words like
Rights. In this case I am looking just at the right of a committee
member to outline his position and for others to ask questions in a
way so that business can be conducted. ]

Stephen J Smoogen.

Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp. Or what's a heaven for?
-- Robert Browning

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