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Opening up the board mailing list

Mark McLoughlin
Hi,

There's a standing desire by some (many?) board members for the
foundation-board mailing list to be made public so that anyone can
follow their discussions.

Personally, I'd also like a way for folks who aren't on the board to
easily be able to participate in any board discussions. However, there
needs to be some way for board members to easily separate the discussion
between board members from the discussion with the wider foundation
membership.

I think of this is an "inner circle"[1] mailing list setup:

 - Two mailing lists - "inner circle" and "everyone else", lets call
   them the IC and EE lists

 - Discussions on IC are mirrored to EE

 - IC member starts thread on IC, the thread is also started on EE

 - IC member replies to thread on IC, the reply also goes to EE

 - EE member starts thread on EE, only goes there

 - EE member replies to thread on EE, whether it was started on IC and
   EE, then the reply only goes to EE

 - IC member replies to thread on EE, the reply also goes only to EE

I've come across cases where this would be useful several times - has
anyone seen a mailman configuration that resembles this?

Cheers,
Mark.

[1] - I'm using that term in a slightly mocking tone btw :)


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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Dave Neary-3
Hi,

On 01/31/2013 10:20 PM, Mark McLoughlin wrote:

> There's a standing desire by some (many?) board members for the
> foundation-board mailing list to be made public so that anyone can
> follow their discussions.
>
> Personally, I'd also like a way for folks who aren't on the board to
> easily be able to participate in any board discussions. However, there
> needs to be some way for board members to easily separate the discussion
> between board members from the discussion with the wider foundation
> membership.
>
> I think of this is an "inner circle"[1] mailing list setup:
>
>   - Two mailing lists - "inner circle" and "everyone else", lets call
>     them the IC and EE lists

I've been thinking of foundation as EE, in which case the board list is
IC - and opening the archives of board discussions/allowing read-only
subscriptions would give the transparency to the operation of the board.
Since board members are all members of the foundation list already
(correct?) the foundation list would be the avenue for members to engage
with the board. Problem solved, without the need for Yet Another Mailing
List or a complicated workflow.

Am I missing something?

> I've come across cases where this would be useful several times - has
> anyone seen a mailman configuration that resembles this?

It is possible in Mailman to restrict posting to a list to a subset of
the members - you set the "Moderation" flag and set behaviour for all
moderated users to "Discard" or "Reject" (reject lets the poster know
the mail was rejected, which might be better) in "Privacy
options->Sender filters" - then you unset the mod bit for all board
members in "Membership management".

  That would allow you to have non-board-members subscribe to the board
list, get all the email, but not be able to post. If members really want
to raise issues related to the board member post, then it can be done on
foundation, but you'd need to manually change the header (which might be
an effective social control to bike shedding board conversations, rather
than trying to figure out how to have reply-to set to a different list
for a subset of the membership).

Cheers,
Dave.





--
Dave Neary - Community Action and Impact
Open Source and Standards, Red Hat - http://community.redhat.com
Ph: +33 9 50 71 55 62 / Cell: +33 6 77 01 92 13

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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Thierry Carrez
Dave Neary wrote:

> On 01/31/2013 10:20 PM, Mark McLoughlin wrote:
>> There's a standing desire by some (many?) board members for the
>> foundation-board mailing list to be made public so that anyone can
>> follow their discussions.
>>
>> Personally, I'd also like a way for folks who aren't on the board to
>> easily be able to participate in any board discussions. However, there
>> needs to be some way for board members to easily separate the discussion
>> between board members from the discussion with the wider foundation
>> membership.
>>
>> I think of this is an "inner circle"[1] mailing list setup:
>>
>>   - Two mailing lists - "inner circle" and "everyone else", lets call
>>     them the IC and EE lists
>
> I've been thinking of foundation as EE, in which case the board list is
> IC - and opening the archives of board discussions/allowing read-only
> subscriptions would give the transparency to the operation of the board.
> Since board members are all members of the foundation list already
> (correct?) the foundation list would be the avenue for members to engage
> with the board. Problem solved, without the need for Yet Another Mailing
> List or a complicated workflow.
>
> Am I missing something?

That's been my suggestion too. The workflow that Mark suggests is likely
to result in thread duplication, missing elements in some threads vs.
the other, and overall confusion, especially with a population that's
not necessarily following strict ML etiquette.

Using two lists (with one of them being the "open discussion" list for
the topics formally introduced on the first one) is a classic setup that
is simpler and more foolproof imho.

--
Thierry Carrez (ttx)

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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Mark McLoughlin
On Fri, 2013-02-01 at 09:20 +0100, Thierry Carrez wrote:

> Dave Neary wrote:
> > On 01/31/2013 10:20 PM, Mark McLoughlin wrote:
> >> There's a standing desire by some (many?) board members for the
> >> foundation-board mailing list to be made public so that anyone can
> >> follow their discussions.
> >>
> >> Personally, I'd also like a way for folks who aren't on the board to
> >> easily be able to participate in any board discussions. However, there
> >> needs to be some way for board members to easily separate the discussion
> >> between board members from the discussion with the wider foundation
> >> membership.
> >>
> >> I think of this is an "inner circle"[1] mailing list setup:
> >>
> >>   - Two mailing lists - "inner circle" and "everyone else", lets call
> >>     them the IC and EE lists
> >
> > I've been thinking of foundation as EE, in which case the board list is
> > IC - and opening the archives of board discussions/allowing read-only
> > subscriptions would give the transparency to the operation of the board.
> > Since board members are all members of the foundation list already
> > (correct?) the foundation list would be the avenue for members to engage
> > with the board. Problem solved, without the need for Yet Another Mailing
> > List or a complicated workflow.
> >
> > Am I missing something?
>
> That's been my suggestion too. The workflow that Mark suggests is likely
> to result in thread duplication, missing elements in some threads vs.
> the other, and overall confusion, especially with a population that's
> not necessarily following strict ML etiquette.
>
> Using two lists (with one of them being the "open discussion" list for
> the topics formally introduced on the first one) is a classic setup that
> is simpler and more foolproof imho.

I see this model panning out one of two ways:

  1) The majority of the discussion happens on the open list and we
     are very successful at getting non-directors involved in healthy
     open discussions. This means massive email threads which I expect
     many of the directors to find overwhelming and not follow or
     participate in the discussion. That could mean little in the way of
     collaborative discussion amongst directors, or those discussions
     happening privately somewhere.

  2) The majority of the discussion happens amongst directors on the
     readonly list with maybe summaries sent to the open list.
     Non-directors are annoyed because they can only follow the
     discussion by looking at the archives and it's difficult to take
     part of the discussion amongst the directors and discuss the topic
     amongst the wider audience.

Basically, I think a big part of the value committee like this is the
members actively and directly engaging with each to understand their
points of view. In an ideal world, the committee members would also
listen to the points of view of non-members. But if we end up with a
situation that the volume of discussion is so large that it's hard to
even just have a discussion amongst committee members, then you'll get a
least some of the members giving up completely on the discussion.

I think this is even true of the TC - if we had discussions on the TC
list, I think TC members would be more engaged. Instead, we have it on
the -dev list and have more participation, but less participation from
the committee members. I think the problem will be worse with the board,
where many of the directors just aren't used to massive mailing list
discussions.

What I'm trying to figure out is a model where directors engage fully
with each other in open discussions, but we also have a very active open
discussions amongst non-directors which directors can dip in and out of.

Cheers,
Mark.


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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Mark McLoughlin
In reply to this post by Dave Neary-3
On Fri, 2013-02-01 at 01:00 +0100, Dave Neary wrote:

> > I've come across cases where this would be useful several times - has
> > anyone seen a mailman configuration that resembles this?
>
> It is possible in Mailman to restrict posting to a list to a subset of
> the members - you set the "Moderation" flag and set behaviour for all
> moderated users to "Discard" or "Reject" (reject lets the poster know
> the mail was rejected, which might be better) in "Privacy
> options->Sender filters" - then you unset the mod bit for all board
> members in "Membership management".
>
>   That would allow you to have non-board-members subscribe to the board
> list, get all the email, but not be able to post. If members really want
> to raise issues related to the board member post, then it can be done on
> foundation, but you'd need to manually change the header (which might be
> an effective social control to bike shedding board conversations, rather
> than trying to figure out how to have reply-to set to a different list
> for a subset of the membership).

I have no idea whether it is possible, but if it is then it would work
pretty well except the "non-directors need to change the Reply: header
when replying" part. That's not terrible, and we can actively encourage
people to do it.

Cheers,
Mark.


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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Thierry Carrez
In reply to this post by Mark McLoughlin
Mark McLoughlin wrote:
> What I'm trying to figure out is a model where directors engage fully
> with each other in open discussions, but we also have a very active open
> discussions amongst non-directors which directors can dip in and out of.

I see where you're going... My main gripe with it is that I don't see
how the duplicate-thread-to-EE and reply-to-both-lists rules can be
enforced in the ML setup, so it will rely on people applying it.

If we can't get developers to use subject prefixes, I somehow doubt we
can get directors to follow thread replication rules between two
mailing-lists. And the discussion can quickly get messy if a subset of
people don't follow the rules.

The alternative setup doesn't depend so much on people following a copy
rule, so my impression is that it would be more successful in the end ?

--
Thierry

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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Mark McLoughlin
On Sat, 2013-02-02 at 17:12 +0100, Thierry Carrez wrote:

> Mark McLoughlin wrote:
> > What I'm trying to figure out is a model where directors engage fully
> > with each other in open discussions, but we also have a very active open
> > discussions amongst non-directors which directors can dip in and out of.
>
> I see where you're going... My main gripe with it is that I don't see
> how the duplicate-thread-to-EE and reply-to-both-lists rules can be
> enforced in the ML setup, so it will rely on people applying it.
>
> If we can't get developers to use subject prefixes, I somehow doubt we
> can get directors to follow thread replication rules between two
> mailing-lists. And the discussion can quickly get messy if a subset of
> people don't follow the rules.

Right, I'm not proposing a solution. I'm proposing some requirements for
an ideal solution and looking for ideas. You think it can't be done, I
get that :)

> The alternative setup doesn't depend so much on people following a copy
> rule, so my impression is that it would be more successful in the end ?

You mean Dave's idea? It's certainly fairly close to the requirements I
laid out, but I don't think Dave is certain mailman can even do that
much.

Cheers,
Mark.


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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Thierry Carrez
Mark McLoughlin wrote:
>> The alternative setup doesn't depend so much on people following a copy
>> rule, so my impression is that it would be more successful in the end ?
>
> You mean Dave's idea? It's certainly fairly close to the requirements I
> laid out, but I don't think Dave is certain mailman can even do that
> much.

Dave's solution looks like the arrangement we have for openstack-tc vs.
openstack-dev, unless I misread him completely. Having lurkers on the IC
list that use the EE list to comment on the discussion... So it's
definitely doable, we've done it once already.

--
Thierry Carrez (ttx)
Release Manager, OpenStack

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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Dave Neary-3
In reply to this post by Mark McLoughlin
Hi,

On 02/04/2013 02:01 PM, Mark McLoughlin wrote:
> You mean Dave's idea? It's certainly fairly close to the requirements I
> laid out, but I don't think Dave is certain mailman can even do that
> much.

I pointed out the various Mailman configuration which needed to be done
to enable that solution. It's certainly possible.

The usual discussions that come up is whether opening up previously
closed archives might constitute a breach of confidentiality for past
discussions. There is no way to open up the archives only from a given
date onwards.

That seems like a topic for the board - if there is board agreement for
opening up past discussions, then it's a rather simple matter to enable
read-only subscriptions and open archives.

Cheers,
Dave.

--
Dave Neary - Community Action and Impact
Open Source and Standards, Red Hat - http://community.redhat.com
Ph: +33 9 50 71 55 62 / Cell: +33 6 77 01 92 13

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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Joshua McKenty
I've added some discussion of transparency to the agenda for the next board meeting, and will try and go through the archives before then to audit for anything that really ought to stay confidential (HR and personnel discussions, mostly).



On Feb 4, 2013, at 1:39 PM, Dave Neary <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi,
>
> On 02/04/2013 02:01 PM, Mark McLoughlin wrote:
>> You mean Dave's idea? It's certainly fairly close to the requirements I
>> laid out, but I don't think Dave is certain mailman can even do that
>> much.
>
> I pointed out the various Mailman configuration which needed to be done to enable that solution. It's certainly possible.
>
> The usual discussions that come up is whether opening up previously closed archives might constitute a breach of confidentiality for past discussions. There is no way to open up the archives only from a given date onwards.
>
> That seems like a topic for the board - if there is board agreement for opening up past discussions, then it's a rather simple matter to enable read-only subscriptions and open archives.
>
> Cheers,
> Dave.
>
> --
> Dave Neary - Community Action and Impact
> Open Source and Standards, Red Hat - http://community.redhat.com
> Ph: +33 9 50 71 55 62 / Cell: +33 6 77 01 92 13
>
> _______________________________________________
> Foundation mailing list
> [hidden email]
> http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/foundation


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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Tristan Goode
The substantive questions are:

1. Is the board elected to make/ratify decisions on behalf of the membership? - If not, why does it exist at all?  The fact is that by conducting a 'national' referendum on every issue the organisation becomes just a large electoral machine. The original aims will be lost in the machinery.

2. Are all our decisions non-competitive in nature? - Clearly some decisions or strategies are commercial in confidence; is it proposed that we allow competitors to read these as they are formulated and perhaps not even actioned yet? Such a transparent process will allow them to stymie every effort of the foundation by (them) being aware of the initiatives as soon as we are. This is lacking common sense.  Perhaps this might be handled using a series of quarantine periods relating to a sensitivity scale to provide some measure of security. This format is used by governments all over the world to protect sensitive information, and has been proven to be acceptable to the majority of citizens.




> -----Original Message-----
> From: Joshua McKenty [mailto:[hidden email]]
> Sent: Wednesday, 6 February 2013 8:24 AM
> To: Dave Neary
> Cc: [hidden email]
> Subject: Re: [OpenStack Foundation] Opening up the board mailing list
>
> I've added some discussion of transparency to the agenda for the next board
> meeting, and will try and go through the archives before then to audit for anything
> that really ought to stay confidential (HR and personnel discussions, mostly).
>
>
>
> On Feb 4, 2013, at 1:39 PM, Dave Neary <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Hi,
> >
> > On 02/04/2013 02:01 PM, Mark McLoughlin wrote:
> >> You mean Dave's idea? It's certainly fairly close to the requirements
> >> I laid out, but I don't think Dave is certain mailman can even do
> >> that much.
> >
> > I pointed out the various Mailman configuration which needed to be done to enable
> that solution. It's certainly possible.
> >
> > The usual discussions that come up is whether opening up previously closed
> archives might constitute a breach of confidentiality for past discussions. There is no
> way to open up the archives only from a given date onwards.
> >
> > That seems like a topic for the board - if there is board agreement for opening up
> past discussions, then it's a rather simple matter to enable read-only subscriptions
> and open archives.
> >
> > Cheers,
> > Dave.
> >
> > --
> > Dave Neary - Community Action and Impact Open Source and Standards,
> > Red Hat - http://community.redhat.com
> > Ph: +33 9 50 71 55 62 / Cell: +33 6 77 01 92 13
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Foundation mailing list
> > [hidden email]
> > http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/foundation
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Foundation mailing list
> [hidden email]
> http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/foundation


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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Mark McLoughlin
In reply to this post by Mark McLoughlin
On Sat, 2013-02-02 at 10:33 +0000, Mark McLoughlin wrote:

> On Fri, 2013-02-01 at 01:00 +0100, Dave Neary wrote:
> > > I've come across cases where this would be useful several times - has
> > > anyone seen a mailman configuration that resembles this?
> >
> > It is possible in Mailman to restrict posting to a list to a subset of
> > the members - you set the "Moderation" flag and set behaviour for all
> > moderated users to "Discard" or "Reject" (reject lets the poster know
> > the mail was rejected, which might be better) in "Privacy
> > options->Sender filters" - then you unset the mod bit for all board
> > members in "Membership management".
> >
> >   That would allow you to have non-board-members subscribe to the board
> > list, get all the email, but not be able to post. If members really want
> > to raise issues related to the board member post, then it can be done on
> > foundation, but you'd need to manually change the header (which might be
> > an effective social control to bike shedding board conversations, rather
> > than trying to figure out how to have reply-to set to a different list
> > for a subset of the membership).
>
> I have no idea whether it is possible, but if it is then it would work
> pretty well except the "non-directors need to change the Reply: header
> when replying" part. That's not terrible, and we can actively encourage
> people to do it.

I've filed a bug on this:

  https://bugs.launchpad.net/openstack-ci/+bug/1160466

The main issue is dealing with the existing archives. I'd like to create
a new, hidden mailing list (which only board members can access) to hold
those archives for now. Perhaps later we can remove confidential
information from the archives and re-instate the leftovers under
foundation-board.

Cheers,
Mark.


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Re: Opening up the board mailing list

Dave Neary-3
Hi,

On 03/26/2013 12:37 PM, Mark McLoughlin wrote:
> I've filed a bug on this:
>
>    https://bugs.launchpad.net/openstack-ci/+bug/1160466
>
> The main issue is dealing with the existing archives. I'd like to create
> a new, hidden mailing list (which only board members can access) to hold
> those archives for now. Perhaps later we can remove confidential
> information from the archives and re-instate the leftovers under
> foundation-board.

If you're renaming the Mailman list, you'll need to follow these
instructions:
http://www.gnu.org/software/mailman/faq.html (search for "rename")

A couple of other sets of instructions, for reference:
http://wiki.list.org/pages/viewpage.action?pageId=4030617
https://chris-lamb.co.uk/posts/renaming-a-mailman-list

Cheers,
Dave.

--
Dave Neary - Community Action and Impact
Open Source and Standards, Red Hat - http://community.redhat.com
Ph: +33 9 50 71 55 62 / Cell: +33 6 77 01 92 13

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