DMB: Proposal for a different review process

Chase Douglas chase.douglas at
Thu Aug 4 16:32:25 UTC 2011

On 08/04/2011 08:52 AM, Mackenzie Morgan wrote:
> On Thu, Aug 4, 2011 at 11:46 AM, Chase Douglas
> <chase.douglas at> wrote:
>> Realistically, you also can't expect that if you are on a publicly
>> elected board that evaluates individuals that there will not be
>> disagreements. It is a very personal process. It may not be apparent,
>> but it can cause a high level of anxiety for the individual applying.
>> This can increase or decrease the volume of the rhetoric. The board
>> needs to be able to handle individuals who disagree in a graceful
>> manner. Harboring assumptions of ill will and intent is not healthy for
>> either the applicants or the board.
> What are we supposed to think is up if when a Canonical employee is
> rejected their manager has a hissy fit in the meeting, possibly with
> some rage-tweeting, and then within 12-24 hours someone else in
> Canonical starts up a mailing list thread about changing the way the
> board works or the criteria?  Are we supposed to think it's just a
> coincidence that Jono asks the TB to change the way the DMB works
> (without even CC'ing the DMB) so soon after...twice now?  From the
> outside it sure looks like strings being pulled to "fix" us.

I confess to not reading the entire IRC logs, but I saw about 5 irc
messages of disagreement at the top of each and then things were left
hanging. One participant tried to state how he felt the policies were
not being applied correctly (about needing a full 6 months for
membership), and this is a perfectly valid point to try to argue. Maybe
he's wrong, but he is within his rights to raise the issue. It's true
that the communication style in the messages may have been sarcastic or
a little heated, but it's an irc channel and par for the course. If
people can't voice disagreements in this fashion, then that's a problem.

Tweets are, as far as I'm concerned, personal messages. If you don't
like them, don't read them. Nothing of consequence should occur through
tweets, and nothing of consequence should happen because of tweets
(outside of really egregious issues that I'll leave aside).

I don't know exactly what Jono or others are attempting to do that make
you think they are trying to "fix" you. If he did not raise issues with
you before going to the TB, then maybe he should have. However, the TB
is a public board as well, and I don't understand who sets the policy
for how to DMB operates, so perhaps Jono was just trying to make things
better for everyone and thought this was the right way. And as I noted
elsewhere, how one communicates with the DMB is a bit murky since the
only mechanism is a private mailing list which you can't find on (I had to google for it by name).

If this all revolves around something Jono is doing, I don't know any
specifics, but as someone who has worked with him I really do believe he
is trying to make things better. There are many historical examples of
how good intentions lead to bad results, and this very well could be one
of them. But please understand that everyone is trying to make things

If you do find yourself in a position where you feel you are being
marginalized by specific people, it's always best to first try to
approach them directly and ask what is going on. I think if you
approached Jono or whoever is making you feel this way, you might find
that he just has a few concerns and you can help resolve them. Or, you
might find maliciousness, in which case you now have evidence and can do
something about it. However, leaving things as they are and assuming ill
will does nobody any good.

-- Chase

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