who has time for the GA? (was: terminating memberships responsibly)

Daniel Pocock daniel at pocock.pro
Wed Aug 29 09:05:40 UTC 2018

On 29/08/18 09:15, Bernhard E. Reiter wrote:
>> If people had differences of opinion with me, there have been many
>> opportunities to discuss that with me at events but for the record, I'd
>> like to make it clear no other member ever did so.
> Unfortunately we did not meet at events, because I rarely make it to events 
> these days being a Dad, instead I wrote several emails stating my 
> disagreement (or agreement) with your points. 

This really gets to the root of the problem though: the GA has this
special status but by the time somebody is accepted in the GA, they may
not have time to do it properly.  It is not necessary to name anybody
here, but to give the community some examples of what happens on the GA
list, one person commented they have to top post on everything because
they are too busy to follow the community's norms and another comment
appeared about only doing free software stuff through a mobile phone
during a daily commute.

If you don't have time to meet people personally, it is inevitable there
will be some misunderstandings in electronic communications, especially
for those trying to squeeze too many things into their life.

Some people are arguing that FSFE needs to move to Discourse but my own
perspective is that if people don't have the time for email, we will
just have the same problems with a new tool too.  To be successful at
FSFE's mission, we need to avoid being seduced by the promise that
technology lets us do more than we really can.

This brings me back to the original question then: democracy.  Annual
elections and allowing all the community to participate can provide
regular renewal.  When somebody doesn't have the time any more, either
they don't run for re-election or the community will help them depart by
voting for an alternative candidate.  Changing the tools and arbitrarily
expelling people are a crazy alternative to something as easy to
understand as democracy.



More information about the Discussion mailing list