[arch-dev-public] RFC Final Comment Period: Adoption of a distribution-wide Code of Conduct

Allan McRae allan at archlinux.org
Thu Oct 7 23:44:56 UTC 2021

On 7/10/21 1:41 am, Sven-Hendrik Haase via arch-dev-public wrote:
> On 06.10.21 12:47, Allan McRae via arch-dev-public wrote:
>> On 27/9/21 4:33 am, David Runge via arch-dev-public wrote:
>>> An RFC has now entered Final Comment Period. In 14 days, discussion will
>>> end and the proposal will either be accepted, rejected or withdrawn:
>>> https://gitlab.archlinux.org/archlinux/rfcs/-/merge_requests/6
>>> Please visit the above link for discussion.
>> Note that visiting the above link to make a comment would require
>> agreeing to the Terms of Service, which includes the document under
>> discussion. However, the RFC process does allow discussion external to
>> the merge request, so people should feel free to respond elsewhere.
>> I do not disagree with Arch having *a* code of conduct. I disagree with
>> Arch formally adopting *this* code of conduct. As I stated in [1], I
>> find the current document to be extremely long. This is mostly due to
>> explaining points in a level of detail that I consider condescending to
>> the community. For example, I'm not sure a word other than condescending
>> can be used to describe explaining in great detail what a troll is to a
>> technical Linux distribution community.
>> I do not think Arch should formally adopt *this* code of conduct.
>> [1]
>> https://lists.archlinux.org/pipermail/arch-dev-public/2021-July/030474.html
>> Regards,
>> Allan
> I think it's important to move forward here and I really like that David
> has been keeping the ball rolling for so long. We've also blocked for a
> really long time on getting a proper set of documents for GDPR
> compliance in the form of ToS and the Privacy Policy.
> I don't think it's condescending. If anything, the level of detail
> things are explained in make it easier to refer to this document alone
> when pointing our digressions as opposed to having to refer to external
> resources. The length doesn't appear to be unreasonable to me but I see
> how it could be improved.

Let look at the section for trolling:

A “troll” is a person who misuses their forum freedoms to intentionally
disrupt, cause controversy, incite an argument, and/or receive negative
attention by deliberately posting provocative content. The term may also
be used as a verb, to refer to the act of posting such content, or as a
noun, to refer the content itself.

Trolls can be deceitful and frequently use indirect expressions of
hostility through ambivalence and implicit messages as a method of
covertly insulting, intimidating, or inciting a person or persons for
their own sadistic pleasure. They often pick their words very carefully
and are therefore able to defend their masked attempts at creating
unrest, redirecting the blame onto the community and its supposed
failure to understand them properly. Trolling is prohibited.

I find that super long, to the point where the message becomes unclear.
 Simply "No trolling" is effective, and unambiguous.

For some reason that is one on the six similar length sections under
"Respect" and not with the seven overly long examples in "Examples of
unwanted behaviour". This again highlights that the document is too long
as it appears the authors lose track of appropriate sections for each point.

> However, I think it's somewhat necessary to get _something_ in place
> here as a CoC. Having something (even perhaps something that you think
> has some need of shortening) is certainly better than no CoC at all! As
> a compromise, I suggest perhaps pulling more detailed content (such as
> the stuff that you deem to be condescending) into foot notes so that the
> main body of the document will become a bit more focused and less
> explanatory. Would that work for you?

It does not work for me.  I don't set a bar too high for what I consider
to be acceptable for Arch - avoiding perfect being the enemy of good and
all - but I find the currently proposed Code of Conduct to be a poor
reflection on the quality of the distribution.

> You appear to generally be agreeing to the overall do's and don'ts (as
> your MR's [0] overall points are about the same). I therefore would like
> to implore you to roll with this version for now and then improve upon
> it as a direct follow up.

Note the currently proposed Code of Conduct would directly violate the
CoC from my MR that contains the following:

Use concise and clear language

The Arch Linux distribution includes people from all over the world,
with varying English skills and available time. Concise, clear
communication saves everyone time and reduces misinterpretation.

> We have to be careful not to burn out David here with too much
> controversy as when that happens, no one will be here to pick up this
> topic and there won't be any CoC at all.

This is a very poor excuse to move forward with a substandard document.
If only one person in a team of dozens sees this as important enough to
work on, perhaps it is not important.


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