Re: Fully winding down my involvement in GTK+

It does not really matter how developer discussions take place as long as they are documented and searchable. Transparency of reasoning behind decisions is just as important as the decision for anyone trying to understand the code base. For medium and large development, I advocate for something like pythons PEPs. For smaller stuff, I see nothing wrong with grabbing chunks of IRC or mailing list discussions and copying them into bug reports or just using the bug report for the discussion (the bug number/url/pep can then be referenced as a comment in the code).


On Sun, Jul 22, 2012 at 11:23 AM, Tristan Van Berkom <tvb gnome org> wrote:
On Sun, Jul 22, 2012 at 6:20 AM, John Emmas <johne53 tiscali co uk> wrote:
> On 22 Jul 2012, at 02:14, Michael Torrie wrote:
>> I consider web-based forums to be the scourge of the internet.
> Curiously, that's exactly how I feel about mailing lists.  Mailing lists work well as long as the volume of traffic is relatively low.  They probably also work well if you're a dedicated user who's willing to install and configure an email client that supports them.  But once they start becoming busy, mailing lists become a turn-off for the average user who doesn't want that level of sophistication and doesn't need to be involved in most of the discussions.
> Taking myself as an example...  during the past 3 years I've probably signed up to 30 mailing lists.  Today, only 3 of those subscriptions are still active.  I've unsubscribed from the other 27.
> Conversely, I've never unsubscribed from a web forum.  There are plenty of forums that I use only rarely - but I've never unsubscribed from one.  I still feel a connection to the relevant community, even if I rarely use it.  But I don't feel any connection at all to a community once I've unsubscribed from its mailing list.
> So if the aim is to make users feel more engaged / more connected, I don't believe that mailing lists are helpful.  In fact, if that's what you're trying to achieve I'd go as far as saying that mailing lists are actually a hindrance.  Whilst they can (and do) build a strong sense of community between developers and the more dedicated users, the high volume of traffic (which often isn't of much interest to the more casual user) makes them feel irrelevant and excluded.  That's been my experience anyway.

No I don't think that is the aim at all.

The point is about developers, not users. Mailing lists are the only
proven way I know of
for coherently developing a product with many developers in many time zones.

This point is critical, after that... with remaining efforts left over
from developing said
software, or by the efforts of other unrelated contributors: help
forums and better
documentation can be written... none of that happens without the first
thing though,
i.e. the software being written by the developers who communicate on a
mailing list.

Support for users need not be delivered in the form of a mailing list,
but since there are
mailing lists for them... no reason to take that away from them
either... I'm sure there
are some user forums for GTK+ out in the wild as well.

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