Understanding the definitions and expectations of our membership processes

Michael Bienia michael at bienia.de
Thu Aug 4 19:07:15 UTC 2011

On 2011-08-02 11:50:52 -0700, Chase Douglas wrote:
> On 07/29/2011 11:24 AM, Jordon Bedwell wrote:
> > Hola,
> > 
> > On Fri, July 29, 2011 11:01 am, Michael Bienia wrote:
> >> This leads to the next question: how much do you trust the person
> >> writing the endorsement?
> >>
> >> Of course I trust endorsements from long-standing dev members with a
> >> great reputation where I trust their ability to judge the packaging
> >> skills and trustworthiness of the applicant. But should I apply the same
> >> trust to e.g. a dev member who got accepted himself a month ago?
> > 
> > Why should you not trust that persons judgement unless there is compelling
> > reason to believe their judgement should not be trusted.  It seems
> > counter-intuitive to okay them for inclusion and then default on your own
> > judgement of them by not trusting them without a very good reason to not
> > trust them.

I'm not saying that I don't trust them at all, just that I trust them
less than a long-standing member (and only in judging the skills of
others in endorsements). It's about expierence. New members have enough
knowlegde and expierence to give them membership/upload rights and I
expect they continue to learn and gain expierence with time. But do they
have the experience and knowledge to judge others from the beginning
(what to look for; what are common mistakes and did they learn from
them)? This only applies for complete new contributors. When someone
already known in the community would add endorsements in his field of
knowledge, I'd trust them.

> > Yes, it's just fine to review an endorsement they give, like any open
> > ecosystem would and does currently do, but flat out not trusting their
> > judgement seems like you feel they don't belong there in the first place
> > which leads to two questions: Why did you okay them them for inclusion at
> > all if you aren't going to trust their judgement on skill?  Why would you
> > okay him/her for inclusion if you have any reasonable doubt about their
> > judgement on skill?
> I think I may understand where Michael is coming from. If, for example,
> I endorse someone based on their Python skills, that endorsement should
> be near meaningless since I don't really know Python. If the application
> reviewer doesn't know me, they might not realize this.

Yes, and if e.g. Barry Warsaw would write the same endorsement it would
have a much bigger weight. But if Chase would work on his Python skills
I would have no issue in giving his endorsements the same weight as
Barry's (or any other expierenced Python packager) after some time.

For some people I know their field of expierence and trust their
endorsements in this field  but I don't know it of all people writing

> However, an application reviewer should be able to look up an unknown
> endorser's credentials fairly readily. If you can't find any through a
> glance at the endorser's LP page, Ubuntu wiki page, or Google search,
> then I think it's fair to give up and not count that endorsement.
> This can also be extrapolated beyond specific developer skills to more
> subjective criteria like trustworthiness. For example, if an endorser is
> a Core Dev, then their endorsement of the trustworthiness of an
> applicant for upload rights should be valid even if the reviewer and
> endorser don't know each other.

True, and at least for me I'd be easier to build up that trust
relationship to an endorser if mine contact to him is more 'personal'
(like interacting on IRC or mail or even meeting him at a conference)
than just from reading some static wiki pages or LP profiles.


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