(Reposted from another website, hoping to get more feedback from the project team and workgroup members too)
There's a fantastic discussion over on the Joomla Community Workgroup Leadership List(TM) that includes a carefully crafted email from Andrew Eddie (forwarded by Brad Baker) about creating a place for folks to call out for help, expose problems, raise concerns/complaints etc.
As I'm not allowed to post to that list, I wanted to say some things about it here, hoping others choose to chime in and voice their thoughts too.
As Andrew states, 2009 was a year that included a lot of drama for Joomla. Using the [Do not buy our kitchens!] metaphor, a lot of pots boiled over, leaving a heck of a mess on the stovetop. How can this be handled better in the future? Instead of complaining about the mess, how can we ensure that these pots get attention before a [url=http://www.[youtube].com/watch?v=rRQoQtFtxVA]grease fire breaks out[/url]?
I'd LOVE to see something magical happen: I know there's a discussion to move the Joomla core itself from the much-despised Gforge, and I'd love to see their web-based interface to whatever code repository they choose be Redmine.
Not only does it not suck, it also has a polymorphic tracker. Now, I see most of you nodding off or shaking your heads, so bear with me a sec.
When I say polymorphic tracker I really mean tracker that can have issues easily created for forum disputes, workflow problems, and complaints about stuff falling through the cracks like user group approval.
Are you still with me?
What this does is give folks a place to air their concerns and complaints about things that are not code, but out of their control that needs attention from the project as a whole. I hear of folks abusing moderators on the Joomla forums, but I also hear about moderators stepping over the line that shouldn't be crossed by a moderator. I hear about people that registered their events or user groups over a year ago and still have no response, or are getting the runaround. The list goes on and on. In fact it goes on so far that I've given up on Skype, as it seems nobody wants to talk about anything useful, they think Skype is some sort of group-enabled primal scream therapy or some such nonsense.
I don't have time for it anymore, and don't care either, if all they can offer is an angry mob. I've been deeply insulted by people I trusted, people I consider friends, because they allowed their anger to turn them mean.
I'm also powerless to effect any sort of change on all these things I hear about, as they are not documented anywhere and there's no way to ask for accountability.
However, Redmine's wicked shiny spiffy whack-daddy polymorphic tracker can do a world of good for this project:
- Issues are documented, and disputes and resolution can be tracked
- It becomes unmistakably clear to the folks behind the project what needs fixin'
- By enabling the vote plugin, you can then vote on items, providing priority
- All can comment on issues, further providing a steam valve approach
- EVERYONE can gauge the progress of the project by seeing what issues weigh most on everyone's hearts
I've repeatedly volunteered in the past to help with just such an approach, and always got a polite thanks but no thanks. Seeing this email from Brad to the list tells me this issue has gone unsolved, and for quite some time. Isn't now appropriate to take measures to keep 2010 from being the angry pitchfork experience that 2009 was?
What do you think?