enforcement first, ask questions later?

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enforcement first, ask questions later?

Daniel Pocock-4

Hi all,

In Molly de Blanc's FOSDEM talk description[1], the first line reads "Is
there a single right way to enforce a code of conduct, community
guidelines, or whatever you call the systems you have to help maintain a
good community?"

Now might be a good time to watch Das Experiment[2] (or the trailer). 
Does that look like a "good community"?

This reveals a lot about the serious problems in Debian right now.  Did
we really sign up to be part of an experiment like that?  I didn't.

Why do certain people want to start out with enforcement, skipping over
normal human relations, avoiding meetings for almost a year, assuming
they always know who is at fault?

It is a fact that both Lamb and de Blanc have stated at various times
during 2018 that they didn't have time to talk to people. It is also a
fact that multiple people have complained that Debian leadership figures
are too busy to talk to them.  Is it acceptable for them to skip over
talking to people and rush to enforcement simply because they are busy? 
Or is that an even bigger risk to community safety?

My impression is that if you don't have time for people, if you don't
listen to people, you don't gain their respect.  If you don't have their
respect, enforcement is even less likely to convey whatever message you
hope it will.

What happens when you can't tell the difference between enforcement and
abuse any more?

What happens when you know it is abuse, how do you stop the enforcers
doing it and hold them to account?

Is anybody in Debian really qualified to conduct enforcement operations
anyway?

Is it right to use defamation and character assassination as a tool of
enforcement?

Regards,

Daniel


1. https://fosdem.org/2019/schedule/event/community_guidelines/
2. https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0250258/


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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Martin Steigerwald
Daniel Pocock - 03.02.19, 08:38:
> This reveals a lot about the serious problems in Debian right now.
> Did we really sign up to be part of an experiment like that?  I
> didn't.
>
> Why do certain people want to start out with enforcement, skipping
> over normal human relations, avoiding meetings for almost a year,
> assuming they always know who is at fault?

Quite bold accusations, Daniel.

And in yet another thread about what seems to be about the same topic
than in about half a dozen or even a dozen of threads before this
thread. If the previous threads did not give you the results you wanted,
how do you come to believe that this new thread will?

Did you actually aim at talking with the people you accuse? Did you
contact them personally by mail *before* writing these bold accusations
to the list?

Our even more clearly: Are *you* even interested in really talking
*with* them, instead of just *about* them?

That written, I do not have any firm opinion on how true your or the
story of anyone else who is involved in that is. In the end, they are
all just that, *stories*. None of it is absolutely true or absolutely
wrong.

For me, to exit the current approach of accusing each other is to assume
good intentions and really notice that there is no fault in life. There
are certainly correct and incorrect decisions and different opinions on
what those are, but how would it be if what happened is simply just
that, is simply just what happened? And what if, just what if it is no
one's fault, but just a result of a large group of people having
different opinions and viewpoints of how to work together and struggling
to find a consensus on how it can work out?

What if, just what if you just for a moment stop giving your power to
other people by accusing them have done wrong to you or Norbert? The
more you do that, the more you just keep repeating the same pattern over
and over and over again.

And now I breathe deeply and let go wanting to control what you do or
how you do it. You do what you do, you do it the way you do it… and it
is totally up to you, whether you like to receive anything of what I
wrote here and take it as an inspiration, or not. It is totally up to
you whether you continue to give your power away like this, or stop
doing that and look inside for intuitive guidance and clear reason. And
it is totally up to me whether I even respond to any further mails like
this one.

Thank you.
--
Martin


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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Steve Langasek
In reply to this post by Daniel Pocock-4
On Sun, Feb 03, 2019 at 08:38:54AM +0100, Daniel Pocock wrote:
> It is a fact that both Lamb and de Blanc have stated at various times
> during 2018 that they didn't have time to talk to people. It is also a
> fact that multiple people have complained that Debian leadership figures
> are too busy to talk to them.  Is it acceptable for them to skip over
> talking to people and rush to enforcement simply because they are busy? 

Yes, it is.

The first duty of the DPL and any delegates is to the Debian Project as a
whole, not to any individual developer.  If the appropriate delegates have
determined that an individual developer's behavior is damaging to the
project, they are absolutely justified in enforcing first.

Restorative justice is a worthwhile goal, but it is a luxury.  It is not the
responsibility of the Debian Project to rehabilitate every contributor who
it's determined has overstepped boundaries.  Even ignoring the effect of bad
actors, that constitutes an open-ended committment.  And even if the
project's representatives HAVE made a committment to rehabilitation, it is
STILL acceptable to enforce FIRST if in their sole judgement this is
necessary in order to limit any ongoing damage.

If you don't understand this, then it is unsurprising to me if enforcement
escalates.

--
Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
Ubuntu Developer                                   https://www.debian.org/
[hidden email]                                     [hidden email]

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Daniel Pocock-4
In reply to this post by Martin Steigerwald
On 03/02/2019 11:02, Martin Steigerwald wrote:
> Daniel Pocock - 03.02.19, 08:38:
>> This reveals a lot about the serious problems in Debian right now.
>> Did we really sign up to be part of an experiment like that?  I
>> didn't.
>>
>> Why do certain people want to start out with enforcement, skipping
>> over normal human relations, avoiding meetings for almost a year,
>> assuming they always know who is at fault?
> Quite bold accusations, Daniel.

Those are known facts, not simply accusations.  They acted like Debian
is a Facebook group, deleting people without any process or discussion. 
Afterwards, during January 2019, they started making up a process to
validate their decision retrospectively.  Their arrogance is no less
bold than my own repudiation of it.

Various people have discussed it privately, sharing communications from
AH/DAM/DPL and concluded there is a pattern in the communications from
our leaders.

de Blanc's talk description also appears to corroborate the same pattern
of communication.  But I want to make it clear I'm only referring to the
description, I didn't see the talk or video yet.

I'd ask people to view this constructively, how can that pattern of
communication be improved when people have some differences?


> And in yet another thread about what seems to be about the same topic
> than in about half a dozen or even a dozen of threads before this
> thread. If the previous threads did not give you the results you wanted,
> how do you come to believe that this new thread will?


No doubt de Blanc has spent some time and effort preparing her talk.

I fully believe a DD giving a talk is worthy of its own thread, even if
I disagree with what the description is suggesting and even if there is
a perception the talk may be trolling people about the issues in
previous threads.  I heard feedback from people who attended the talk
but I would leave it to them to post that here.

I hope somebody will start a thread about my talk too.  I would
encourage people to watch de Blanc's talk video, even more than my own,
with an open mind and also review material, like the movie Das
Experiment, to get a comprehensive understanding of the issues and risks.


> Did you actually aim at talking with the people you accuse? Did you
> contact them personally by mail *before* writing these bold accusations
> to the list?

> Our even more clearly: Are *you* even interested in really talking
> *with* them, instead of just *about* them?


There have been numerous public and private requests for meetings, for
example, the public thread suggesting that we need a mediation procedure
rather than an "anti" something approach.

I had personally written to Chris Lamb a couple of weeks before FOSDEM
and on other occasions and he never provides any constructive reply.


> That written, I do not have any firm opinion on how true your or the
> story of anyone else who is involved in that is. In the end, they are
> all just that, *stories*. None of it is absolutely true or absolutely
> wrong.


People should not be rushing to make stories about each other public anyway.

As nobody knows the stories and even if we did, it would be hard to
validate parts of them, it would be good to start by making decisions on
the principles, for example, with one or more GRs to address the following:

- does the community want to rule out the use of secret "evidence"?

- if it isn't ruled out, what can be done to reduce the unfairness?

- what are reasonable periods for volunteers to respond to complaints? 
48-72 hours is far too short.

- do we uphold the presumption of innocence, except in the most
outrageous instances of misbehaviour?

- does the community revoke any adverse statements that have been made
through the history of the project, not just the recent emails from
Chris Lamb?  Do we issue guidance to future DPLs that they can never
undermine or speak badly about any developer, past or present?

It is better to answer those questions without reference to any
individual cases.


> For me, to exit the current approach of accusing each other is to assume
> good intentions and really notice that there is no fault in life. There
> are certainly correct and incorrect decisions and different opinions on
> what those are, but how would it be if what happened is simply just
> that, is simply just what happened? And what if, just what if it is no
> one's fault, but just a result of a large group of people having
> different opinions and viewpoints of how to work together and struggling
> to find a consensus on how it can work out?

I notice that in the Tory party ruling over the United Kingdom,
everybody has a different opinion on Brexit.  They argue and fight
vigorously but they didn't expel anybody.

Most organizations find ways to work through differences and reorganize
teams to optimize productivity rather than picking people out to be
scapegoats.


> What if, just what if you just for a moment stop giving your power to
> other people by accusing them have done wrong to you or Norbert? The
> more you do that, the more you just keep repeating the same pattern over
> and over and over again.

This is not about power over anybody, this is about the reputation of
the project.  I have no problem working around people like this, it is
par for the course in most big organizations.

Although I didn't want to emphasize it before giving them time to
repent, the only people they have demoted here are themselves.  Because
there are many people, not just myself, who trust DAM a lot less than
before and will be unlikely to trust them again.  Maybe the DAMs, the AH
team and the rest of their inner circle are giving themselves high-fives
right now but the wider community finds this backstabbing repulsive.

For example, a lot of people spent a lot of effort migrating their
repositories and ACLs to Salsa in 2018.  If we can't rely on our Salsa
accounts then we may as well not use Salsa at all.  Who would want to go
to all that effort of setting things up on Salsa and then find it ripped
out underneath them.  In future, I'll create repositories on Gitlab or
another platform.

Not only that, but I won't be encouraging any new contributors to create
guest accounts on Salsa any more.  I don't like this idea that we are
looking down on new people.  I'd prefer to treat collaborators as equal,
I don't want to have endless debates about who is the "real" Debian
Developer.  I've been promoting Debian for over 20 years and abusive
threats from DAMs are not going to stop me any time soon.

If Debian revises the constitution to ensure we are sincere about
membership rights, I might go back to using Salsa and other services more.


> And now I breathe deeply and let go wanting to control what you do or
> how you do it. You do what you do, you do it the way you do it… and it
> is totally up to you, whether you like to receive anything of what I
> wrote here and take it as an inspiration, or not. It is totally up to
> you whether you continue to give your power away like this, or stop
> doing that and look inside for intuitive guidance and clear reason. And
> it is totally up to me whether I even respond to any further mails like
> this one.


Any feedback is welcome

Many people have communicated privately about this.  Some have made it
clear they are fed up with the discussions, in fact, so am I.  Others
have stated they are horrified to see Debian treating volunteers like
this and while they are afraid to speak up, they are watching closely,
keen to see us be transparent, especially as we work through the
principles.  Some have said they are keen to read all opinions,
including my own and would like more people to contribute too.

Regards,

Daniel

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Daniel Pocock-4
In reply to this post by Steve Langasek
On 04/02/2019 02:16, Steve Langasek wrote:

> On Sun, Feb 03, 2019 at 08:38:54AM +0100, Daniel Pocock wrote:
>> It is a fact that both Lamb and de Blanc have stated at various times
>> during 2018 that they didn't have time to talk to people. It is also a
>> fact that multiple people have complained that Debian leadership figures
>> are too busy to talk to them.  Is it acceptable for them to skip over
>> talking to people and rush to enforcement simply because they are busy? 
> Yes, it is.
>
> The first duty of the DPL and any delegates is to the Debian Project as a
> whole, not to any individual developer.  If the appropriate delegates have
> determined that an individual developer's behavior is damaging to the
> project, they are absolutely justified in enforcing first.
>
> Restorative justice is a worthwhile goal, but it is a luxury.  It is not the
> responsibility of the Debian Project to rehabilitate every contributor who
> it's determined has overstepped boundaries.  Even ignoring the effect of bad
> actors, that constitutes an open-ended committment.  And even if the
> project's representatives HAVE made a committment to rehabilitation, it is
> STILL acceptable to enforce FIRST if in their sole judgement this is
> necessary in order to limit any ongoing damage.
>
> If you don't understand this, then it is unsurprising to me if enforcement
> escalates.
>

Is that a threat?


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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Ondřej Surý-4
In the past, I’ve seen some communities to wither because of a toxic person violently pushed their agenda on everybody.

This is certainly following the similar pattern.

That’s my first and last 2 cents to this discussion.

Ondřej
--
Ondřej Surý <[hidden email]>

> On 4 Feb 2019, at 07:29, Daniel Pocock <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> On 04/02/2019 02:16, Steve Langasek wrote:
>>> On Sun, Feb 03, 2019 at 08:38:54AM +0100, Daniel Pocock wrote:
>>> It is a fact that both Lamb and de Blanc have stated at various times
>>> during 2018 that they didn't have time to talk to people. It is also a
>>> fact that multiple people have complained that Debian leadership figures
>>> are too busy to talk to them.  Is it acceptable for them to skip over
>>> talking to people and rush to enforcement simply because they are busy?
>> Yes, it is.
>>
>> The first duty of the DPL and any delegates is to the Debian Project as a
>> whole, not to any individual developer.  If the appropriate delegates have
>> determined that an individual developer's behavior is damaging to the
>> project, they are absolutely justified in enforcing first.
>>
>> Restorative justice is a worthwhile goal, but it is a luxury.  It is not the
>> responsibility of the Debian Project to rehabilitate every contributor who
>> it's determined has overstepped boundaries.  Even ignoring the effect of bad
>> actors, that constitutes an open-ended committment.  And even if the
>> project's representatives HAVE made a committment to rehabilitation, it is
>> STILL acceptable to enforce FIRST if in their sole judgement this is
>> necessary in order to limit any ongoing damage.
>>
>> If you don't understand this, then it is unsurprising to me if enforcement
>> escalates.
>>
>
> Is that a threat?
>
>

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Daniel Pocock-4
On 04/02/2019 08:18, Ondřej Surý wrote:
> In the past, I’ve seen some communities to wither because of a toxic person violently pushed their agenda on everybody.
>
> This is certainly following the similar pattern.
>
> That’s my first and last 2 cents to this discussion.

Thanks for your feedback

There is no such thing as a toxic person

There is a very toxic situation though which can be traced to certain
abuse, threats and scapegoating.

Regards,

Daniel

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Harlan Lieberman-Berg
On Mon, Feb 4, 2019 at 2:37 AM Daniel Pocock <[hidden email]> wrote:
> There is no such thing as a toxic person
Res, non verba.

--
Harlan Lieberman-Berg
~hlieberman

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Pierre-Elliott Bécue-3
In reply to this post by Daniel Pocock-4
Le 03/02/2019 à 08:38, Daniel Pocock a écrit :
> [snip]

Daniel.

There are times, not all, but some, when silence is golden.

This is one such time.

We've all heard (rather, read, but let's assume you asserted it so many
times we've actually heard it).

Forcing people to hear them again multiples times is neither relevant
nor a sane thing.

This is something you should have realized by yourself.

Just quit this behaviour.

--
Pierre-Elliott Bécue
No need to reply, I won't bother to read.

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Gavin Howard
I am not a contributor, so take what I say with a grain of salt.

I was planning on becoming a contributor to Debian recently and joined
the mailing list in preparation for doing so. And then I saw
everything that was happening.

It made me nervous that people could be accused and removed without
any public process, opportunity to collect evidence, opportunity to
face their accuser, presumption of innocence, and other basic human
rights guaranteed, at least, by the US Constitution. (I don't know
about the Debian constitution.) Also, when I saw someone who appeared
to be in a position of leadership asking for evidence of wrongdoing
*after* making a decision to ban someone, that was...chilling, as
though there was a vendetta that was fulfilled and that the leader was
looking for justification of such a vendetta.

For myself, I do not have great social skills and cannot read subtle,
between-the-lines, subtle messages, especially through the medium of
email. I could see a future where, if I joined Debian, I might make an
innocent mistake and not realize it until I was removed from the
project. That does not sound fun.

So, no thank you. And best of luck to everyone.

Gavin Howard

On Mon, Feb 4, 2019 at 6:10 AM Pierre-Elliott Bécue <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Le 03/02/2019 à 08:38, Daniel Pocock a écrit :
> > [snip]
>
> Daniel.
>
> There are times, not all, but some, when silence is golden.
>
> This is one such time.
>
> We've all heard (rather, read, but let's assume you asserted it so many
> times we've actually heard it).
>
> Forcing people to hear them again multiples times is neither relevant
> nor a sane thing.
>
> This is something you should have realized by yourself.
>
> Just quit this behaviour.
>
> --
> Pierre-Elliott Bécue
> No need to reply, I won't bother to read.
>

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Pierre-Elliott Bécue-3
Dear Gavin,

Le lundi 04 février 2019 à 09:28:41-0700, Gavin Howard a écrit :

> I am not a contributor, so take what I say with a grain of salt.
>
> I was planning on becoming a contributor to Debian recently and joined
> the mailing list in preparation for doing so. And then I saw
> everything that was happening.
>
> It made me nervous that people could be accused and removed without
> any public process, opportunity to collect evidence, opportunity to
> face their accuser, presumption of innocence, and other basic human
> rights guaranteed, at least, by the US Constitution. (I don't know
> about the Debian constitution.)
Using references to legal arguments to determine how a private group
should work and behave is not really a relevant thing. Debian has
normative texts it chose as a project and none of these is entitled to
the notion of "fair trial" or whatever like this.

Regarding the lack of public process, I can understand how you see it as
a good thing to hold "public trials", but others could say that such a
"public trial" could undermine their professionnal career and their
public image.

Debian chose one way regarding publicity, you're free to think about
alternatives.

That being said, don't try to involve Human Rights or any State of Law
justice notion in this as this is mostly irrelevant to the subject.

I'm pretty sure you know plenty groups where the same kind of thing
holds. Especially in the US.

> Also, when I saw someone who appeared to be in a position of
> leadership asking for evidence of wrongdoing *after* making a decision
> to ban someone, that was...chilling, as though there was a vendetta
> that was fulfilled and that the leader was looking for justification
> of such a vendetta.

The fact that some people can do mistakes sometimes isn't either a hard
piece of news or something sufficient to form any judgement, especially
when they retracted themselves with apologies (after being called out by
members of the project, including at least two DAM). Ironically, there
are two persons on this list who asked for evidences of "misbehaviours"
of other people, one who retracted, and whom you pointed a finger at,
and one other, who is actually the original poster of the current
thread, who offered a 500£ bounty for such "evidences" and who didn't
retract a thing.

No one having banned anyone asked for any more evidence on this list or
another. You probably made a mistake while reading these far too long
threads.

> For myself, I do not have great social skills and cannot read subtle,
> between-the-lines, subtle messages, especially through the medium of
> email. I could see a future where, if I joined Debian, I might make an
> innocent mistake and not realize it until I was removed from the
> project. That does not sound fun.

Do you really think that among more than a thousand people, nobody
except the two recently expelled developers made an innocent mistake? Do
you actually think that regarding the one whom I replied to, he's on any
"innocent mistake" path?

I really suggest that you take some time to think about it again.

> So, no thank you. And best of luck to everyone.

I'm sorry if the current situation discouraged you to contribute to the
project. I'm especially sorry if by the previous email I sent, I
contributed to this feeling. Yet I'll respect your choice, that you are
free to overturn anytime if you feel the wish to give help and input to
the project.

I hope you find happiness and fun in your future projects/work.

Best regards,

--
Pierre-Elliott Bécue
GPG: 9AE0 4D98 6400 E3B6 7528  F493 0D44 2664 1949 74E2
It's far easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them.

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Daniel Pocock-4
In reply to this post by Pierre-Elliott Bécue-3
On 04/02/2019 13:09, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
> Le 03/02/2019 à 08:38, Daniel Pocock a écrit :
>> [snip]
> Daniel.
[snip]
> Forcing people to hear them again multiples times is neither relevant
> nor a sane thing.


Why make this personal?  Why not say the same thing for the
anti-harassment team trying to promote their political agendas with
their regular "bits" emails and their talks?  When the dark side of
enforcement keeps rearing its ugly head over and over again, why would
you deny people a right of reply?

Given my previously stated commitment to free speech, I accept those
emails and talks no less than I thirst for a wider variety of responses
rebutting them.

This all reminds me of the TSA constantly reassuring America about all
the things they have to do to make people "safe".  If somebody grimaces
every time they see their child being patted down for their own good,
would you question their sanity too?  Or are they the only person who
has retained their sanity?

Maybe I am insane, convinced that Debian's reputation is worth fighting
for when other people already gave up.  This is not about me, it is
about the whole community.  So many people told me they are afraid to
speak now because DAM keeps dossiers.

I didn't join Debian to put it on my CV.  I've been promoting Debian
since 1997 but I never rushed to join as a DD.  I only joined in 2012. 
I did that because I wanted to do more for our users.  If I didn't seek
to participate for some benefit to my reputation, why is it that people
see fit to attack me personally and threaten my reputation in the way
that they have?

Some people also feel that the very personal replies (like yours,
this[1] and this[2]) deter other people commenting and that adds to a
perception that these concerns are not more widespread.  Who would want
to be put down by a reply like that or called a sock puppet?

If this mailing list is not the right place to hold the leaders to
account and if they insist on "demoting" volunteers and stubbornly
refuse any meetings, even when we were all at FOSDEM on the weekend,
what is the next step?  Do developers need to come to DebConf in yellow
vests[3]?  Or do we follow the FSF/FSFE example and set up a separate
"Debian Europe" for the people who don't want to waste more time arguing
about what a "real" Debian Developer is?  It is quite ironic that a
British DPL is following in the footsteps of imperialism, taking this
divide-and-conquer approach, stratifying the community, putting people
into the "demotion" sin bin at the same time that his country is
threatening to divide and starve[4] Ireland again.  No deal == division,
it is that simple, it is a threat repeated many times every day and
millions of Irish people see borders and walls as an act of war.

In fact, maybe a lot of the toxic problems appearing in Debian are
reflections of the "adult" leadership in the world today.  You can't go
anywhere in the UK without hearing the "no deal" threat.  Threats are
the new normal.  You can't go anywhere without passing signs calling on
you to snitch[5] on people who look different, maybe that has
subconsciously inspired some of the recent calls for dossiers on people?

Yet despite the huge differences of opinion over Brexit in the British
Tory party and despite the fact that all Europe can't stop laughing[6]
at them, I notice that not one member of the Tory community has been
expelled.  If they can voice such wildly divergent opinions and work
through their differences under such immense pressure, why can't Debian?

Regards,

Daniel

1. https://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2019/01/msg00211.html
2. https://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2019/02/msg00007.html
3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yellow_vests_movement
4. https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/3d9d4f44-f9ad-11e8-83e5-4dc2d31f2a89
5.
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/nov/07/anti-terrorism-posters-nazi-propoganda
6. https://youtu.be/CaYTm7ip9g0


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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Daniel Pocock-4
In reply to this post by Pierre-Elliott Bécue-3
On 04/02/2019 22:52, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
>
> That being said, don't try to involve Human Rights or any State of Law
> justice notion in this as this is mostly irrelevant to the subject.


See my recently censored blog[1] to understand why this is hypocritical

Among other things, if we didn't care about human rights, we wouldn't
care about software licenses either, we would just copy any source code
we want to use.  You can't pick and choose rights like that and deliver
a consistent argument.

Regards,

Daniel


1. https://danielpocock.com/debian-human-rights-paradox

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Gavin Howard
In reply to this post by Pierre-Elliott Bécue-3
Pierre,

Apologies that I took so long to reply to this; it ended up in my spam
folder for some reason.

On Mon, Feb 4, 2019 at 3:52 PM Pierre-Elliott Bécue <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Dear Gavin,
>
> Le lundi 04 février 2019 à 09:28:41-0700, Gavin Howard a écrit :
> > I am not a contributor, so take what I say with a grain of salt.
> >
> > I was planning on becoming a contributor to Debian recently and joined
> > the mailing list in preparation for doing so. And then I saw
> > everything that was happening.
> >
> > It made me nervous that people could be accused and removed without
> > any public process, opportunity to collect evidence, opportunity to
> > face their accuser, presumption of innocence, and other basic human
> > rights guaranteed, at least, by the US Constitution. (I don't know
> > about the Debian constitution.)
>
> Using references to legal arguments to determine how a private group
> should work and behave is not really a relevant thing. Debian has
> normative texts it chose as a project and none of these is entitled to
> the notion of "fair trial" or whatever like this.

I understand that, but I have more to say on it later.

> Regarding the lack of public process, I can understand how you see it as
> a good thing to hold "public trials", but others could say that such a
> "public trial" could undermine their professionnal career and their
> public image.
>
> Debian chose one way regarding publicity, you're free to think about
> alternatives.

That choice should be made by the accused, if their rights were to
actually be upheld. See below.

> That being said, don't try to involve Human Rights or any State of Law
> justice notion in this as this is mostly irrelevant to the subject.
>
> I'm pretty sure you know plenty groups where the same kind of thing
> holds. Especially in the US.

Sure I do. And I don't participate in them.

If Debian wants to be one of those groups that is Debian's choice. But
in my opinion, any organization that does not hold basic, God-given
natural rights as sacred is an organization that I will never
participate in because the culture of such organizations can easily be
turned to target some of its own members.

> > Also, when I saw someone who appeared to be in a position of
> > leadership asking for evidence of wrongdoing *after* making a decision
> > to ban someone, that was...chilling, as though there was a vendetta
> > that was fulfilled and that the leader was looking for justification
> > of such a vendetta.
>
> The fact that some people can do mistakes sometimes isn't either a hard
> piece of news or something sufficient to form any judgement, especially
> when they retracted themselves with apologies (after being called out by
> members of the project, including at least two DAM). Ironically, there
> are two persons on this list who asked for evidences of "misbehaviours"
> of other people, one who retracted, and whom you pointed a finger at,
> and one other, who is actually the original poster of the current
> thread, who offered a 500£ bounty for such "evidences" and who didn't
> retract a thing.
>
> No one having banned anyone asked for any more evidence on this list or
> another. You probably made a mistake while reading these far too long
> threads.

Or maybe I didn't read the whole thing because looking back, it seems
that this "thread" is spread across several. My point stands because
it is about the immediate perception of Debian as a project to a
person who had just joined the mailing list looking to participate.

However, after reading the cash bounty email, there is a difference:
the bounty was offered for evidence after an accusation was made but
*before* a decision. The other was asking for evidence *after* a
decision.

> > For myself, I do not have great social skills and cannot read subtle,
> > between-the-lines, subtle messages, especially through the medium of
> > email. I could see a future where, if I joined Debian, I might make an
> > innocent mistake and not realize it until I was removed from the
> > project. That does not sound fun.
>
> Do you really think that among more than a thousand people, nobody
> except the two recently expelled developers made an innocent mistake? Do
> you actually think that regarding the one whom I replied to, he's on any
> "innocent mistake" path?
>
> I really suggest that you take some time to think about it again.

Um...yes, I do. Because I have seen this thing before.

I spoke at a conference once, laying out the current problems with the
culture of programming and how to fix it, as well as how to elevate
the work software "engineers" do to a place where they might deserve
that title. One of the ideas I laid out was the possibility of
creating a certification process for software developers to become
true, certified engineers and to require certain critical
(infrastructure-level) projects to be led by such certified engineers.

What happened after my talk was that I had several managers accuse me
of "white privilege" since I did not have to work my way through
college and thus did not know what doing so was like for minorities.

The kicker? I *did* work my way through college. (My parents provided
no help, though it wasn't because they didn't love me; they didn't
because they knew it would be good for me, and they were right.) The
managers just assumed that I hadn't.

Now, may I be entirely misguided about the dynamics of this situation?
Yes; after all, I am not so great at this social thing. But the
experience I laid out above was a time when I literally did nothing
wrong and was targeted. To me, it seems like this is what happened
here, especially since evidence was asked for *after* a decision was
made.

> > So, no thank you. And best of luck to everyone.
>
> I'm sorry if the current situation discouraged you to contribute to the
> project. I'm especially sorry if by the previous email I sent, I
> contributed to this feeling. Yet I'll respect your choice, that you are
> free to overturn anytime if you feel the wish to give help and input to
> the project.

As I said above, I never will. Not until things change in Debian.

> I hope you find happiness and fun in your future projects/work.

Thank you.


> Best regards,
>
> --
> Pierre-Elliott Bécue
> GPG: 9AE0 4D98 6400 E3B6 7528  F493 0D44 2664 1949 74E2
> It's far easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them.

Gavin Howard

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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Martin Steigerwald
In reply to this post by Daniel Pocock-4
Dear Daniel.

Daniel Pocock - 04.02.19, 07:29:

> On 03/02/2019 11:02, Martin Steigerwald wrote:
> > Daniel Pocock - 03.02.19, 08:38:
> >> This reveals a lot about the serious problems in Debian right now.
> >> Did we really sign up to be part of an experiment like that?  I
> >> didn't.
> >>
> >> Why do certain people want to start out with enforcement, skipping
> >> over normal human relations, avoiding meetings for almost a year,
> >> assuming they always know who is at fault?
> >
> > Quite bold accusations, Daniel.
>
> Those are known facts, not simply accusations.  They acted like Debian
> is a Facebook group, deleting people without any process or
> discussion. Afterwards, during January 2019, they started making up a
> process to validate their decision retrospectively.  Their arrogance
> is no less bold than my own repudiation of it.
[…]

I am deeply concerned about what you write.

However, for me, these are not facts.

Honestly: I read different posts contradicting each other, partly to the
maximum extent possible, it appears to me. I have *no* idea, what the
truth is. My bet is, again: None of it is *the* truth.

Part of a solution for me still is in agreeing to disagree and agreeing
that no one here is either right or wrong. Different, but not right or
wrong. And assume good intentions.

For me, again, there is no fault in life.

What I am seeing that you are apparently not, at least not yet achieving
the result you like to achieve – at least that is how I perceive it. And
I wonder whether another thread here will bring you closer to achieving
the result you like to achieve.

Best of luck for you for finding joy again in working for Debian or a
different distribution or project. I certainly agree that people who
decide about who is member or no member of Debian are supposed to treat
everyone fairly… whatever that means concretely.

For me there can be cases for enforcement first, ask questions later. If
a child runs into a car, I stop the child *physically* without asking
the child why the child did it or even explaining anything. Or here, if
the harm of not expelling someone from the project would be so high,
that immediate action appears to be warranted. But the requirements for
such an immediate action or decision would be *very high* for me. I
experienced something like that when practicing in a youth center. A boy
was about to attack another boy with a knife, a kitchen knife if I
remember correctly, completely in rage. I caught the attacking boy and
held him tightly fixed with all my strength until he let go of the knife.
I clearly said the boy that I will hold him this way until he calms
down. I did not argue anything. I did not ask any questions either. I
did not even justify using physical force. I knew either I hold the boy
or something very tragic might happen. It was a bit of a challenge,
cause in that situation he was quite strong. A day later the boy thanked
me for doing so. When reviewing my action later on I decided that I
would do it like this again if something like this would happen again.
However, here… within the Debian project… no life has been in danger.
And while the Debian project is no state, and human rights may not apply
directly… I either treat others with excellence… or I better do not
treat them at all. For me every human expression of the one
consciousness has an inherent dignity that I aim to respect in all
situations and in all circumstances. For me there is something about
human rights that is so universal that no entity within human society
would be outside of it. And that includes Debian.

If Debian project does not aim for the highest standards of excellence…
not only technically, but also socially, in interacting with one
another… there is clearly room for improvement.

My usual approach would be to ask first, then decide what to do.

But since I do not really know… out of my own experience… what actually
really happened here, I see a different stories apparently contradicting
each other and leave it as that.

Ciao,
--
Martin


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Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Martin Steigerwald
In reply to this post by Gavin Howard
Dear Gavin.

Gavin Howard - 04.02.19, 17:28:

> I am not a contributor, so take what I say with a grain of salt.
>
> I was planning on becoming a contributor to Debian recently and joined
> the mailing list in preparation for doing so. And then I saw
> everything that was happening.
>
> It made me nervous that people could be accused and removed without
> any public process, opportunity to collect evidence, opportunity to
> face their accuser, presumption of innocence, and other basic human
> rights guaranteed, at least, by the US Constitution. (I don't know
[…]
> For myself, I do not have great social skills and cannot read subtle,
> between-the-lines, subtle messages, especially through the medium of
> email. I could see a future where, if I joined Debian, I might make an
> innocent mistake and not realize it until I was removed from the
> project. That does not sound fun.
>
> So, no thank you. And best of luck to everyone.

I get how you feel.

I maintain a package and well another one which I did not update in
quite a while… but what I read here does not really add to my
motivation.

However… no one so far told me to stop maintaining those two packages
and as I am neither a Debian Developer (DD) or a Debian Maintainer (DM)
in the sense of the project guidelines, I feel I have nothing to loose
here.

So maybe… if you like to contribute something, for now… you can have
someone else upload / sponsor it for you. Choosing that path no
membership of any kind is involved and there is not really all that much
too loose.

I bet for now I will focus to continue maintaining that package with a
good quality for as long as someone sponsors it for me. OTOH I postponed
my idea to become at least a DM for now, due to what I read here. I told
my sponsor and he understood.

Thanks,
--
Martin


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Re: (nope, I won't go off list) Re: enforcement first, ask questions later? (was: (off list) Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?)

Pierre-Elliott Bécue-3
In reply to this post by Pierre-Elliott Bécue-3
Le mercredi 06 février 2019 à 08:42:13+0000, Daniel Pocock a écrit :

> On 04/02/2019 22:52, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
> >
> > Do you really think that among more than a thousand people, nobody
> > except the two recently expelled developers made an innocent mistake? Do
> > you actually think that regarding the one whom I replied to, he's on any
> > "innocent mistake" path?
>
>
> That is extraordinarily offensive and defamatory
>
> Many people noticed that your statement makes the implication that there
> may have been wrongdoing while providing absolutely no evidence
> thereof.  The only evidence that has appeared is about dirty politics
> and backstabbing.
>
> This proves my point about rampant character assassination[1] in Debian,
> thank you for proving that.
>
> Please kindly provide a public apology and retraction of your statement.
>
> Regards,
>
> Daniel
>
> 1. https://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2018/12/msg00042.html
I'm pretty sure I told you to not reply to me as I would not bother to
reply.

Please kindly comply with my requirement.

And stop behaving like my neighbour's child. Some introspection would be
a good thing.

Regards,

--
Pierre-Elliott Bécue
GPG: 9AE0 4D98 6400 E3B6 7528  F493 0D44 2664 1949 74E2
It's far easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them.

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Re: (nope, I won't go off list) Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Pierre-Elliott Bécue-3
Le mercredi 06 février 2019 à 09:51:45+0100, Pierre-Elliott Bécue a écrit :

> Le mercredi 06 février 2019 à 08:42:13+0000, Daniel Pocock a écrit :
> > On 04/02/2019 22:52, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
> > >
> > > Do you really think that among more than a thousand people, nobody
> > > except the two recently expelled developers made an innocent mistake? Do
> > > you actually think that regarding the one whom I replied to, he's on any
> > > "innocent mistake" path?
> >
> >
> > That is extraordinarily offensive and defamatory
> >
> > Many people noticed that your statement makes the implication that there
> > may have been wrongdoing while providing absolutely no evidence
> > thereof.  The only evidence that has appeared is about dirty politics
> > and backstabbing.
> >
> > This proves my point about rampant character assassination[1] in Debian,
> > thank you for proving that.
> >
> > Please kindly provide a public apology and retraction of your statement.
> >
> > Regards,
> >
> > Daniel
> >
> > 1. https://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2018/12/msg00042.html
>
> I'm pretty sure I told you to not reply to me as I would not bother to
> reply.
>
> Please kindly comply with my requirement.
>
> And stop behaving like my neighbour's child. Some introspection would be
> a good thing.
>
> Regards,
For the sake of clarity, I shall disclose any private email you send to
me. I don't want to have any private discussion with you. This is not
negotiable.

--
Pierre-Elliott Bécue
GPG: 9AE0 4D98 6400 E3B6 7528  F493 0D44 2664 1949 74E2
It's far easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them.

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Re: (still not off list) Re: enforcement first, ask questions later? (was: Re: (off list) Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?)

Pierre-Elliott Bécue-3
Le 6 février 2019 09:58:34 GMT+01:00, Daniel Pocock <[hidden email]> a écrit :

>On 06/02/2019 08:54, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
>> Le mercredi 06 février 2019 à 09:51:45+0100, Pierre-Elliott Bécue a
>écrit :
>>> Le mercredi 06 février 2019 à 08:42:13+0000, Daniel Pocock a écrit :
>>>> On 04/02/2019 22:52, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
>>>>> Do you really think that among more than a thousand people, nobody
>>>>> except the two recently expelled developers made an innocent
>mistake? Do
>>>>> you actually think that regarding the one whom I replied to, he's
>on any
>>>>> "innocent mistake" path?
>>>>
>>>> That is extraordinarily offensive and defamatory
>>>>
>>>> Many people noticed that your statement makes the implication that
>there
>>>> may have been wrongdoing while providing absolutely no evidence
>>>> thereof.  The only evidence that has appeared is about dirty
>politics
>>>> and backstabbing.
>>>>
>>>> This proves my point about rampant character assassination[1] in
>Debian,
>>>> thank you for proving that.
>>>>
>>>> Please kindly provide a public apology and retraction of your
>statement.
>>>>
>>>> Regards,
>>>>
>>>> Daniel
>>>>
>>>> 1. https://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2018/12/msg00042.html
>>> I'm pretty sure I told you to not reply to me as I would not bother
>to
>>> reply.
>>>
>>> Please kindly comply with my requirement.
>>>
>>> And stop behaving like my neighbour's child. Some introspection
>would be
>>> a good thing.
>>>
>>> Regards,
>> For the sake of clarity, I shall disclose any private email you send
>to
>> me. I don't want to have any private discussion with you. This is not
>> negotiable.
>>
>
>OK, thank you for also helping demonstrate that there is no one person
>to be blamed for the confrontational attitudes in this community, it
>appears to be a deep rooted and pervasive problem in organizational
>culture.
>
>Regards,
>
>Daniel

You are on a good path to prove my "not on an innocent mistake path" point.

This was my last reply.

Best regards.
--
PEB from my phone.

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Re: (still not off list) Re: enforcement first, ask questions later?

Pierre-Elliott Bécue
Le 6 février 2019 10:09:11 GMT+01:00, "Pierre-Elliott Bécue" <[hidden email]> a écrit :

>Le 6 février 2019 09:58:34 GMT+01:00, Daniel Pocock <[hidden email]>
>a écrit :
>>On 06/02/2019 08:54, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
>>> Le mercredi 06 février 2019 à 09:51:45+0100, Pierre-Elliott Bécue a
>>écrit :
>>>> Le mercredi 06 février 2019 à 08:42:13+0000, Daniel Pocock a
>écrit :
>>>>> On 04/02/2019 22:52, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
>>>>>> Do you really think that among more than a thousand people,
>nobody
>>>>>> except the two recently expelled developers made an innocent
>>mistake? Do
>>>>>> you actually think that regarding the one whom I replied to, he's
>>on any
>>>>>> "innocent mistake" path?
>>>>>
>>>>> That is extraordinarily offensive and defamatory
>>>>>
>>>>> Many people noticed that your statement makes the implication that
>>there
>>>>> may have been wrongdoing while providing absolutely no evidence
>>>>> thereof.  The only evidence that has appeared is about dirty
>>politics
>>>>> and backstabbing.
>>>>>
>>>>> This proves my point about rampant character assassination[1] in
>>Debian,
>>>>> thank you for proving that.
>>>>>
>>>>> Please kindly provide a public apology and retraction of your
>>statement.
>>>>>
>>>>> Regards,
>>>>>
>>>>> Daniel
>>>>>
>>>>> 1. https://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2018/12/msg00042.html
>>>> I'm pretty sure I told you to not reply to me as I would not bother
>>to
>>>> reply.
>>>>
>>>> Please kindly comply with my requirement.
>>>>
>>>> And stop behaving like my neighbour's child. Some introspection
>>would be
>>>> a good thing.
>>>>
>>>> Regards,
>>> For the sake of clarity, I shall disclose any private email you send
>>to
>>> me. I don't want to have any private discussion with you. This is
>not
>>> negotiable.
>>>
>>
>>OK, thank you for also helping demonstrate that there is no one person
>>to be blamed for the confrontational attitudes in this community, it
>>appears to be a deep rooted and pervasive problem in organizational
>>culture.
>>
>>Regards,
>>
>>Daniel
>
>You are on a good path to prove my "not on an innocent mistake path"
>point.
>
>This was my last reply.
>
>Best regards.

I changed my mind. No more email from Pocock will end en on this list through me. I don't want to give him a tribune.

Sorry for the noise, and have a nice day, all !

Cheers,
--
PEB

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