It’s not a secret that not all developers systematically update Changelogs when committing to the tree. Sometimes it’s because they’re lazy. Sometimes it’s because they think what they’re committing isn’t worth adding more cruft to the Changelog. Sometimes even they might be right.
Less than two weeks ago the Council members have voted that committing to Changelogs would be mandatory. No exception. The good news is that the QA police is already at work and has filed at least one bug against a developer with threats for more. They have also asked for and obtained one suspension. These guys are obviously rogue developers who defy authority and need to be dealt with utmost severity. Possible sentences include suspension, forced retirement and ban from a specific project for multiple years. Not everybody has been taken care of yet but it will eventually happen, and sooner rather than later, because we know who they are.
All is well that ends well and we can all go to bed with the satisfaction of a job well done.
Except that we are talking about heavy committers, with more commits than most of us, and in one particular instance more commits then anybody else, ever. These guys say they will commit to Changelogs but in some cases they believe it doesn’t make sense. They are not listened too however. I find that interesting because they’re the ones who made Gentoo what it is. You can’t say the same about the council (not this one in particular but councils in general which includes this one). If anything we should simply follow their lead, do what they do, thank them and then shut up. They’re not problematic developers, I’ve unfortunately had to deal with my fair share of these and know how they are. No, those are people who know what they are doing and are proving it thousands of times a month. The only issue with them is that they spend more time working than arguing. Some of them have however been on the Council at some point or another. And we’re saying that their opinion doesn’t matter?
Except also that Gentoo is a community of volunteer developers who donate their time to a project. To some of them it’s even a cause. Is this how such a community should be treated? Apparently yes, Gentoo is now do or die. I can see the fun running away at the speed of light.
All that because faced with its inability to encourage a behavior in a positive way, the Council opted for the easy solution which consists in pulling out the big guns and shooting all around. It’s surprising to see this from a group of Council members that you would otherwise call tame to be polite. I tried explaining to some of them that they had made a wrong turn somewhere and that it wasn’t too late but they won’t admit it. Although one has admitted that this couldn’t end well. I guess it’s been a long year for them. They’ll soon get an opportunity to get a well deserved vacation if they so desire.
There’s more to this story with a Queen of Drama, her unstable temper, her rise to power and her faithful servants. But this one is far from finished yet so I’ll keep watching.
Now please forgive me because I have to go. My popcorn is ready.