Draft resolution formalising Debian's Associated Project status

Josh Berkus josh at postgresql.org
Tue Mar 6 16:40:10 UTC 2007


> IMO this is not the first time he has overstepped the mark; on another
> memorable recent occasion, after an enormously acrimonious debate, 15%
> of Debian's governing body thought he had offended badly enough that
> he should be sacked over it[1], as many as endorsed his actual
> decision[2].

This may affect the DPL's re-election prospects but it's completely irrelevant 
to the normalization of relations between Debian and SPI.  In the case you 
cite (Dunc-Tank) the DPL clearly communicated with us what things he was 
asking for as DPL and what things he was arguing as Anthony Towns, SPI 

If AJ was "overstepping", he'd simply have asked me to cut Vorlon a check, 
which I would have done, or represented Dunc-Tank as having the support of 
Debian, which he did not, even though it cost him what he wanted.   So you're 
essentially saying that the DPL role is broken because the DPL created 
controversy, which viewpoint I don't agree with.

> This would be one way of doing it but it doesn't seem necessary to go
> to that level of formality.  SPI is a lot closer to Debian than a bank
> is to its customers, and we have plenty of Debian Developers here to
> make sure we find out if anything goes wrong.

I'm going to vote against any version of the resolution which does not spell 
out Debian delegates' powers and responsibilities.  While we haven't (to 
date) had a problem with the DPL misrepresenting Debian constitutional 
decisions, the same cannot be said of all DDs on spi-private.   As the 
Treasurer who is not a DD, I can't be satisfied by anything which says the 
SPI board should "just know", or that they should take the word of just any 
Debian-SPI member for it.

Any resolution I support will:
a) explicitly spell out the authority of the DPL
b) indicate who (by office, presumably) can bring us a Debian constitutional 
decision in the event that it is not communicated by the DPL (such as after a 
ratified recall vote)
c) indicate which other offices, if any, can ask for which other things from 
the Board without explicit DPL delegation
d) indicate where we can verify the credentials of these officers.

All of this can be as simple as:
"The Debian Project Leader will be responsible for all communication between 
Debian and SPI, and has full authority over all Debian assets held by SPI.  
In the event that the DPL office is vacant, the Debian Secretary will 
communicate decisions according to the Debian constitution to the SPI Board.  
These decisions may be verified at www.debian.org/decisions."

Josh Berkus
Software in the Public Interest, Inc.

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