IRC Meetings

Josh Rhoderick rhoderickj at
Sun Feb 24 06:19:43 GMT 2008

I agree. We shouldn't end the meetings as a result of a lack of
participation, we need to increase participation. Like Craig has pointed
out, we shouldn't forget that this team is statewide. It is not a Columbia
or Baltimore team. In order to function as a statewide team, we have to make
the team available to all Marylanders. In fact, I'd be more willing to get
rid of PHYSICAL meetings before I'd get rid of the IRC meetings. There's no
reason we can't do both, however, so long as the physical meetings are
transcribed so that everyone can follow what's being discussed.

Before we try to increase participation, we should first set out some goals.
As I've mentioned before, I have little interest in install fests and I
think they're a poor use of our resources, so for my part, I propose that
our team should spend more time on creating a buzz around Ubuntu. After all,
we're not just doing this so we can get together to hack away at some
troublesome machines, we're doing this because we believe in Ubuntu and we
believe in FOSS. Therefore, I believe that we need to have more
public-oriented events that are open to a wider audience. It's all about the
buzz. Not to mention I think install fests unfairly characterize Ubuntu as
difficult to install. In case you haven't noticed, install fests are
preaching to choir: only the most troublesome of machines end up at these

Also, I think the install fests and our obsessive focus on them are
potentially what's causing the problem with participation. At some of the
meetings I attended, I noticed people would much rather talk about Ubuntu
and FOSS than sit around troubleshooting. That's understandable, and I think
we should encourage group discussion and meetings around Ubuntu. I truly
think we should FIRST be an Ubuntu enthusiasts group and SECOND a technical
support group. We can develop our membership and our goals much better if we
give people a REASON to attend the meetings.

I think the meeting in Frederick is potentially a great step in the right
direction. I for one vote that we move away from this tech support paradigm
and try our hand as an enthusiasts group. I think people would be much more
likely to participate if they got something out of it, even if that is as
simple as an hour of social interaction with like-minded people. Trying to
crack the whip at our members about helping out at install fests is a poor
way to build group morale and enthusiasm. Ubuntu draws people together, so
let's focus on people, not on technology, and I think everything else will
naturally fall into place.

Anyway, that's my piece. :)

-- Josh

On Sun, Feb 24, 2008 at 12:16 AM, Craig Younkins <cyounkins at>

> Citing dismal attendance and overall noninterest, some team members are
> motioning to end monthly IRC meetings.
> I am in opposition to this because physical meetings have a small radius,
> and I strongly believe we need to reach out to all of Maryland, which we
> can
> do through IRC. Meeting attendance is dropping, and we need to *strengthen
> our community!*
> I'm worried about how little this team accomplishes as a whole. People
> from
> all over Maryland can help with events, the wiki, and the soon-to-be-live
> website. We need to bring these people out and gain some support!
> IRC meetings do not need to take long. If we begin *promptly* we will
> usually only need 30 mins to an hour of talk time. Is 7PM on the first
> Wednesday of every month inconvenient for people? If so, suggest another
> time during the first week of the month.
> I hope some people that don't/can't attend the physical meetings will
> speak
> up and we can bring regular IRC meetings back into the team.
> Let's talk about it.
> Craig Younkins
> --
> Ubuntu-us-md mailing list
> Ubuntu-us-md at
> Modify settings or unsubscribe at:

More information about the Ubuntu-us-md mailing list