[maemo-community] Discussion about Maemo community management...

From: Quim Gil quim.gil at nokia.com
Date: Mon Feb 16 11:10:00 EET 2009

ext Dave Neary wrote:
> Hi Tim,
> Good to see this moving to the list!
> Tim wrote:
> <snip>
>> Maemo Community Manager responsibilities include:
>> * Engaging and communicating with the Maemo community within groups,
>> forums, and via blogging to communicate news, help solve problems, and help
>> ensure that every member has the experience they want.
>> * Developing and hosting programs and opportunities for Maemo members to
>> meet and collaborate online and in the real world.
>> * Working with the [Customer Care] team to navigate the occasional
>> interpersonal conflict.
> For my money, all of these tasks (except right now helping people to
> meet in real life) are already part of the remit of the Maemo team - I
> certainly feel that they're part of the role I should be playing.
> The one thing which you don't list, which might justify an additional
> role, is someone to work with the Maemo SW team in Nokia to increase
> community interaction on their part.

This is part of my work, and the points above too. This doesn't make me
a community manager, though.

I agree with Dave: most of the functions you described should/could be
pushed by the current maemo.org team. Nokia is funding 4 full time
positions and there are plenty of OSS projects that go away with much
less than this.

Maybe it's about sharpen the current roles in the maemo.org team and
also in Maemo SW (there is Tero, Jussi and others that have community
related responsibilities)?

Also, maybe it's my federal/decentralized point of view, but I think the
community management is a role to be assumed by the maemo.org team in
equal parts (or maybe relying a bit more on Dave since his profile is a
bit more generic than, say, a web/bug/deb master). Still, nobody is
asking the guys to concentrate 100% of the time only looking at webs,
bugs and debs ignoring all the rest.

> I know several people who work in
> Maemo SW who are very community oriented - maybe half a dozen or more
> names come easily to mind - but I am sure that there are others who
> quite simply have not engaged the community - either because they don't
> feel it's part of their job (and thus they don't have the time for it at
> work), because they're not particularly inclined to "expose" themselves
> in public, or because they don't yet see a reason to do so.

Or because they work on stuff they can't discuss about.

> There is a role for someone, I think, to be an advocate for the Maemo
> project withing the Maemo SW development team.
>> concerning the points I outlined above, there is no single paid person
>> whose job it is to oversee the community and facilitate the community's
>> needs to and from Nokia. My concern is that while there are a lot of
>> people who are willing to volunteer time to the community, there are a
>> lot of things that either become someone's _extra_ responsibility, or
>> get neglected and/or forgotten. (I.e., Did you know that most of us --
>> even Nokia and maemo.org employees -- volunteer our time completely out
>> of the scope of our regular day jobs?)
> I'm not sure that the community needs more management (read: enablement)
> at this stage. I think that we need to encourage a collaborative spirit,
> where that is feasible, where people working for Nokia on Maemo think of
> themselves as Maemo community members.
> A few years back, I was interviewing for a job (which finally fell
> through) to work as a developer on GNOME. The interviewer asked me
> whether, if hired, I'd consider myself to be a GNOME developer who
> happened to be paid by (company X), or a (company X) developer who
> happened to be paid to work on GNOME.
> I'd be interested to hear the feelings of the various people paid to
> work on Maemo if we asked them that question - and I'd be interested in
> changing a few people to be more the former than the latter.

Quim Gil
open source advocate
Maemo Software @ Nokia

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