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

From: Jeremiah Foster jeremiah at jeremiahfoster.com
Date: Sat Feb 21 15:45:37 EET 2009
On Feb 20, 2009, at 5:36 PM, Tim wrote:

> Hi,
> On Thu, 19 Feb 2009 09:42:36 +0200, Quim Gil <quim.gil at nokia.com>  
> wrote:
>> If the Maemo community wants to have a Maemo community manager in the
>> maemo.org team you just need to decide yourselves and get one.
> I brought this up for two reasons: (1) it's on my mind (some of you  
> know
> why); (2) I heard some moaning from developers who feel that they  
> still are
> not getting enough "Nokia" support in dealing with some "community"  
> issues
> (or, presumed community issues). Developers are really the ones who  
> will
> need to address these concerns (since I am not a developer).

I have heard some specific complaints as well. Namely the debian based  
tools in maemo are old. debhelper for example is version 5.x and Lenny  
(Stable debian) has debhelper 7. I think developers would like the  
maemo platform to more closely track debian in terms of updated build  

It is unclear to me whose direct responsibility it is for the maemo  
build tools. Is this controlled by Nokia?

> On a non-technical community management level, I am a very happy Maemo
> community member. I really do think that the maemo.org team and  
> several
> Maemo SW people are doing a great job of community management. But,  
> as I
> was thinking about the roles/responsibilities of an official community
> manager, I couldn't help but interject some non-technical items into  
> the
> description. And, as I stated before, I'm not a fan of expecting  
> people
> with "official" responsibilities to take on additional tasks that may
> interfere with a work/life balance.
> BUT... As I now realize, "community management" tasks _are_ part of  
> the
> "official" responsibilities (something I assumed, but was not sure  
> of). In
> this case, all is good...until other important issues are neglected  
> due to
> overwhelming community management work. This, unfortunately, is  
> where the
> tipping point idea steps in -- and, when Nokia may have to spend  
> some time
> thinking about who might take up the slack.

This is a hard problem. It is also a new problem because large  
corporations do not traditionally engage in this type of open source,  
or rather Free Software, development. Where the lines need to be drawn  
and resources assigned is fluid and difficult to efficiently  
determine. I think the most effective community management comes out  
of the community organically, Nokia cannot just add money and suddenly  
there is community, it has to be driven by developers, people who want  
to do stuff on the maemo platform.

I don't want to pretend I know the answer here, but the discussion  
sure is fascinating.


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