Ubuntu Community Council Meeting

Benj. Mako Hill mako at canonical.com
Thu Sep 30 16:14:20 CDT 2004

The Ubuntu Community council had its first meeting today. I've
attached the summary/minutes to this email. If you want to read the
raw IRC low, I've got that one online too. It's up here:


Thanks to everyone who showed up and participated -- especially those
not on the community. I hope to see more of you in two weeks.


Benjamin Mako Hill
mako at canonical.com
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Today, the Ubuntu Community Council held its first meeting. More
information on the council is on the website:


The meeting was attend by the council members:

 - Benjamin Mako Hill
 - Mark Shuttleworth
 - Colin Watson
 - James Troup

Also attending were:

 - Sivan Green
 - Daniel Stone
 - Ryan Thiessen
 - Brandon Hale
 - Scott James Remnant

The agenda included the two (broad) items:

 * Team structures, leaders, goals.
 * Finalization of Ubuntu community structures and processes documents

Teams: Which Teams

More information on teams in general can be found here:


The following new teams were discussed:

IA64 Team (already listed)
  No leader but the project is not really off the ground either.

Security Team (approved)
  Leader to be suggested by Matt Zimmerman. Martin Pitt was suggested.

Documentation Team (approved)
  No obvious leader: TBA. 

Internationalization/Localization/Translation Team (approved)

  People happy with any name that is both accurate and apparent to
  many people. The leader can give input on this.

  Dafydd Harries was suggested as a team leader should he choose to
  accept. The team would coordinate translations and also handle
  issues such as fonts, input methods, and locales. If this is too
  broad, the team can split in the future.

External Relations Team (on hold)

  This group would handle relationships between Ubuntu and outside
  groups -- usually other open source projects and "upstreams."

  The consensus seemed to be that at the moment, the people that are
  handling and working on this -- Jeff Waugh and Benjamin Mako Hill
  mostly, are doing a good job and, if needed, will answer to the CC
  directly. When a more defined need and plan for a team is raised,
  the community can reevaluate.

Accessibility Team (tentatively approved)

  People in attendance agreed that an accessibility would be an
  important choice given Ubuntu's goal. It was unclear who involved at
  the moment would help handle this. The suggested raised at the
  meeting were Henrik Omma and Sivan Green.

Team Process

Team leader should provide text for their team website with a small
list of information on contacting and getting involved and on the
goals of the team. Highlighting active members on the page as a way of
raising recognition was also suggestion.

In terms of communication channels, all teams should begin with
conversation on the standard devel channel (#ubuntu-devel) and on the
standard Ubuntu list (ubuntu-devel). For mailing list conversation,
teams should prefix team related information with [teamname] in the
subject. When traffic for team becomes distracting or high enough
volume, those teams can request or be requested to move to their own
mailing lists. The default behavior should be to have traffic on the
standard mailing list until it becomes unreasonable or difficult.

Community Council

Several people including Daniel Stone suggested that the council was
too small and needed non-Canonical representation. Mark will work on
finding and appointing a non-Canonical representative soon.

Appointments will be made by the SABDFL (Mark Shuttleworth) but, as
decided at the meeting, will be confirmed by the maintainers. Terms
will be for 2 years.

The current board will be run by the current maintainers and then, in
one year once the community process is more mature, the board will be
confirmed again more formally in a special case

The relationship between the Technical Board and the Community Council
was discussed. The consensus was that the two will not have purview
over the same issues often and will disagree rarely as well. In those
rare cases, it decisions or decisions about jurisdiction will have to
be made by the SABDFL.

Maintainers, defined on the website, are currently limited to
developers who have been working on Ubuntu full-time and Herbert
Xu. Over time, this will expand according to the process online.


The board discussed the maintainer process. The feeling was that
maintainers will be confirmed by the Community Council but only with
approval by the Technical Board.

Maintainership will be permanent but will have to be renewed every two
years through a simple process. This aims to cut down on missing in
action and inactive maintainers. Retirement will be encouraged and
reactivation of maintainership will be allowed.

In terms of keeping maintainers in the loop on important policy
changes and such, the group agreed on an ubuntu-devel-announce that
all will be very low traffic and that all Ubuntu maintainers will be
expected to read. Changes in policy will be posted to this list.

Colin Watson was careful to state that, "I think we should be clear
up-front that you don't have to be an Ubuntu maintainer to
contribute; you can contribute patches just as easily by making
branches and requesting merges."

Benjamin Mako Hill had some clarifications about website language
which he was encouraged to clean up himself.

Action Items

Benjamin Mako Hill:

 - Write/Post Summary (done!)
 - Poke people to create ubuntu-devel-announce list.

Mark Shuttleworth:

 - Poke team leaders to update their websites with information about
   their group and bring them up to speed on process
 - Hold an IRC confirmation process for the current council.

Getting Involved

To get involved with the next CC meeting in two weeks, you can:

 - Edit the agenda at: http://wiki.ubuntu.com/CommunityCouncilAgenda
 - Get in touch with any of the council members with your ideas.
 - Stayed tuned for the announcment of the meeting and show up in IRC.

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