Draft resolution formalising Debian's Associated Project status

Josh Berkus josh at postgresql.org
Tue Mar 6 18:33:05 UTC 2007

Ian, Bdale,

> Would it help if we included a URL for the constitution, along the
> lines of `at the time of writing, the Debian Constitution can be found
> at http://www.debian.org/devel/constitution' 

Yes, *and* specific clause references.  The Debian Constitution is 14 pages 
long and changes every 2 years; you simply cannot expect a non-Debian SPI 
Board member to read and interpret all of it as to whether it might apply to 
Debian's relationship to SPI or the particular thing which SPI is being asked 
to do.  For reference, the PostgreSQL charter on interacting with SPI is 
*one* page, and the ones for other organizations are one *paragraph.*

From what I can tell, the only relevant paragraphs are: 5.1.3, 5.1.10 and 
5.1.11.  Further, I (as Treasurer) would pretty much ignore the part of 
5.1.10 which says: "Major expenditures should be proposed and debated on the 
mailing list before funds are disbursed.", simply because I have no way to 
verify that they have or haven't been. 

> The Secretary, since the constitution makes them responsible for
> holding votes (and reporting the results).  My resolution makes this
> clear, asking the Secretary to inform the SPI Board explicitly when
> it's relevant.

Yes, I liked that about your proposal.

> > c) indicate which other offices, if any, can ask for which other
> > things from the Board without explicit DPL delegation
> Again, this is spelled out in the constitution although in practice
> it's not likely to come up.

I wasn't thinking about *disputes* with the DPL.  I was thinking, for example, 
if the Debian Auditor e-mails me out of the blue asking for detailed 
financial information, do I give it to her or do I ask the DPL first?

> This might be a good idea but it's difficult to write down - just as
> the leadership succession in a smaller, less formalised, associated
> project might not be so readily discoverable.

So the names of the officers aren't posted anywhere on the Debian web site?  
There are no public archives of debian-vote?

> If SPI is to avoid "sticking its nose"
> into Debian project internals, then the resolution under discussion is
> an important tool in that it is effectively an interface specification
> between SPI and Debian.


I feel like I keep saying, "I want a simple API definition" and Ian & MJ keep 
saying "read the whole codebase".

Josh Berkus
PostgreSQL Project
Core Team Member
(any opinions expressed are my own)

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