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Re: Fedoraforum.org is now official?

I've been wondering for most of the day how to put this, but I'm
disappointed in the Fedora leadership.

Not so much for the decision (although I maintain it was a bad one), as
for the way in which it was made.

One of the Red Hat strengths has always been to say "This isn't working
well enough. This needs changing." Then they change it and pick up the
pieces later. Sometimes it does take a while.

(Remember Red Hat 7 and the "snapshot" 2.96 compiler? Remember the move
to UTF-8? We're still dealing with the fall-out from udev, and the NPTL
move. There have been others.)

But usually, the change is technical (or business-related). One of the
reasons I've stuck with Red Hat and Fedora is that I trust them to have
technical talent. To make the right technical decisions. To make the
changes that need to be made, to advance the platform.

They've proved themselves to be capable of seeing what the technical
Right Thing is (or, at least, a much better thing) before the rest of
the community. Eventually, most people agree.

This decision is different: it's about communities. We are not code to
be pummelled, refactored, and, if needed, discarded. Crucially, we are
supposed to be able to help change things by ourselves if necessary, if

If *we* get the help. This forum works the way it does because Red Hat
set it up that way, and have not been bothered to change it. We have
just had a massive, long argument-cum-flame war trying to get some
standards together and "approved" because there has been basically no
help from Red Hat.

The mailing list is not perfect. We know that. We've gone ahead and
forged a community, perhaps Fedora's biggest, despite that.

You know? "Community"? The words that the project website keeps using?

Let me tell you: "community" means "communication". It means
"consultation". It means at *least* an attempt to come to a consensus.
Especially on issues that change the status of that community.

Communication has only been one way. There has been no attempt at
consultation: no attempt at consensus.

The ways that have served Fedora well for technical decisions Will Not
Do when it comes to a major change to the status of a community. It
would be charitable to call what happened an oversight, or that the
people concerned don't have spare time to consult widely. But it looks
from here like supreme indifference to our opinions and our
contributions, veering towards contempt. 

As a result, I'm seriously wondering what on earth I am doing here.
There are other Linux communities: there are other OSes. I have probably
been using Red Hat and Fedora as my main distribution for too long.

I am seriously considering switching distributions. (Any recommendations
for AMD-64? I understand there's a new Ubuntu out tomorrow).

I'd like to hear what you all feel about this. I'll remain subscribed to
the list for a while, but I doubt I'll contribute much in future.

Thank you all for what you've done. Thank you, Red Hat and the Fedora
community, for all your technical achievements.

God bless, and God speed,


E-mail address: james | "I would like to apologise to the relatives of the fan
@westexe.demon.co.uk  | who gave me 29 books to sign in Odyssey 7, Manchester.
                      | I'm a little twitchy towards the end of a day of
                      | signing and did not mean to kill and eat him."
                      |     -- Terry Pratchett.

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