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Today’s mass filings

Our bugzilla today really had an hard day, I’ve started filing bugs for build tools added to runtime-depend of packages, the list is awfully long, and “My Bugs” search now lists over 300 bugs.

Why did I do this? Well, we really need to keep the tree clean on these things so that --depclean works as expected. But mostly my interest is for final system deployment. On my vserver, as well as on a final target for a cross-compiled embedded system, you don’t want packages like flex, bison or swig, and this is quite possible if the packages are not in RDEPEND, when using ROOT= or binary packages.

Now, the work today was boring, long and a huge pour of time. I did it gladly without being forced to, I’m fine with it and I’m not expecting anything in particular for what I did. If I didn’t want to do it, I could have just reported the issue, and let someone else doing the thing. This is what volunteer-based work is about.

Why do I say this? Well there seems to be people to think that even volunteer work should apply the same rules as businesses. While sometimes you might make use of strategies designed for businesses, like marketing your project better and similar, volunteer works and businesses have vast differences.

Sure there are free software projects ran as businesses, but that usually involves people paid to do their job as the core rather than full volunteer-based approaches. So please if you think to run a volunteer project as a business, well think twice or expect serious trouble from the volunteers.

So please remember that there are lots of people who are fine to work on a volunteer project that would probably start to be quite nervous if you run it as a business, okay?

Comments 3
  1. I agree entirely with your point of view, but I would add that volunteer work cannot be a synonym to “free work, no matter what the quality is”. This is very subjective, of course, but volunteering brings responsibilities: volunteers chose to be responsible for something and are expected to do responsible work on that area.I’m not pointing fingers anywhere, I’m just making a general statement. 🙂

  2. Sure you’re perfectly right on that. On the other hand, I sincerely don’t think that business is synonym of “quality work” at all, and I refer to my own work as well, as I can see I do better work for Free Software than I do for my current job – not by my choice, mostly because of what I have to work with at hand.

  3. For the whole time I am with Gentoo ( since v1.4) I have a feeling it could use a bit more of bussiness polish.I agree that one can’t treat volunteer as a paid proffesional, but from client POVresponses like “f* you, be happy with what you have got, it’s not like you are paying me” tend to irritate.This is especially true and frequent when some stupid bug has hit you in the balls at some critical moment when something REALLY has to be finished NOW.So maybe it wouldn’t hurt Gentoo to have commercial branch for more demanding customers, whuch could generate source of income for gyus that want to work on Gentoo…

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