[Linux-aus] On Perspective

Matthew Cengia mattcen at gmail.com
Tue Jun 7 16:55:04 AEST 2016


I think "perspective," "constructive," "volunteers," and "importance" are
the key words I take from this email. I don't think there's anything I can
say that you haven't already articulated, Hugh. Well done. To all LA

On Tue, Jun 7, 2016 at 4:46 PM, Hugh Blemings <hugh at blemings.org> wrote:

> Hi,
> I confess a degree of regret on having to write this and that the matter
> of the VPAC events have taken the turn they have.
> For that matter I also dearly wish more of our membership would reflect on
> whether the email they're about to send will move the commons of Linux and
> Free/Open Source Software forward, or merely make them feel better in the
> moment.
> In this I do not refer alone to the current threads on the Linux-aus
> mailing list but rather the general trend over nearly two decades for an
> undue percentage of the traffic on the linux-aus list to be
> griping/trolling and then - often left to volunteers - defending actions,
> justifying decisions and so forth.
> This latter all too often _literally_ consuming hours of discussion,
> debate and checking to ensure a measured and appropriate response or
> solution to the crisis du jour.
> And so to perspective...
> Linux Australia and its membership do fantastic and, often, important
> work.  Much of it is unseen, most of the time things done right, fun is
> had, code is written, people learn new things, a career is started, perhaps
> even a career advanced and so forth.  All great stuff.  Also, for most of
> us, the sole motivation for being involved as volunteers.
> But I'm struck that we sometimes lose perspective about the importance, in
> the grander scheme of things, of what we do.
> To start, I was, frankly, a bit annoyed that our infrastructure went
> offline precipitously but upon hearing the full story, once our very able
> admin team had extinguished most of the fires, this annoyance all but
> dissipated entirely.
> But the thing that really allowed me, for want of a better term, to find
> peace with the situation was the realisation that actually - it didn't
> really matter.
> Nobody died, no one lost revenue, no LA events were dramatically
> impacted.  What we do is fantastic, important and useful, but it isn't (and
> probably shouldn't) be _mission critical_.
> This is not to say for a moment that we shouldn't take our
> responsibilities or the work undertaken seriously, but rather that we
> should weigh the matter at hand in a broader light.
> Please - reflect and decide if an email that will ultimately come down to
> the criticism of an organisation, a team or an individual is warranted, or
> could perhaps be written in a more constructive tone.
> Last time I checked we were, at the end of the day, trying to accomplish
> largely the same set of fantastic, important and fun, but probably not
> mission critical things...  Perhaps then space to allow our interactions
> online and in person to better reflect these shared goals ?
> Thank you for reading,
> Kind Regards,
> Hugh Blemings
> President, Linux Australia
> _______________________________________________
> linux-aus mailing list
> linux-aus at lists.linux.org.au
> http://lists.linux.org.au/mailman/listinfo/linux-aus

Matthew Cengia
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