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Re: [steering-discuss] Updated draft of the Community Bylaws


Hi David,

On Sat, 2010-12-04 at 06:02 +0800, David Nelson wrote:
@mmeeks: Michael, what exactly do you mean by this phrase:

"Members agree to work and contribute to an egalitarian community,
where roles are not titles and do not grant any special privileges."

Does that mean that there will be no team leads? If so, how will one
be able to have sufficient authority to organize and direct work? ;-)
I think I don't understand... Could you explain, maybe, please?

        Well - this is my view :-) it is perhaps not a sensible view, I'm open
to persuasion, and luckily I don't make these decisions the SC / board
does / will, but here is my advice:

        In my view, authority is conferred by two ways: hard work, and
relationship. Those who do the hard work, and build the product, teams
and relationships, will naturally lead those teams. Hopefully they do
this not alone, but with others too.

        AFAICS - giving an artificial "job title" to someone does not always
help them build an effective team that works well with others; and
indeed, it can hinder work or create conflict.

        Worse - while we would hope that a job title would reflect a reality:
that of someone (or the people) doing the most work in a given community
- the OO.o experience has shown us that -sometimes- these titles are
handed out like candy to random individuals, who then cease to do useful
work, or practically disappear :-) It seems to me that detecting these
cases, and arbitrating / transfering / handing out official titles is
some political nightmare that cannot be easily imposed from outside the
sub-community, and can go badly wrong inside it.

        That is contrasted to a fairly natural shift in control as new people
arrive to do more work, and others start to do less: this is the reality
of Free Software projects, managing a continuous flux of change and
turnover of people.

        Of course, if the Board wants to create this sort of arbitration and
selection problem, I defer to their wisdom; but I'm personally against
it. Clearly there are some formal roles it is hard to live without:
board member, spokesperson etc. Others IMHO do not need to be clear cut,
and are best left fluid.

        Does that make (some) sense ? :-)

        HTH,

                Michael.

-- 
 michael.meeks@novell.com  <><, Pseudo Engineer, itinerant idiot


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