[openstack-dev] Pros and Cons of face-to-face meetings

Anita Kuno anteaya at anteaya.info
Thu Mar 8 18:22:01 UTC 2018

On 2018-03-08 09:03 AM, Jens Harbott wrote:
> With the current PTG just finished and seeing discussions happen about
> the format of the next[0], it seems that the advantages of these seem
> to be pretty clear to most, so let me use the occasion to remind
> everyone of the disadvantages.
> Every meeting that is happening is excluding those contributors that
> can not attend it. And with that it is violating the fourth Open
> principle[1], having a community that is open to everyone. If you are
> wondering whom this would affect, here's a non-exclusive (sic) list of
> valid reasons not to attend physical meetings:
> - Health issues
> - Privilege issues (like not getting visa or travel permits)
> - Caretaking responsibilities (children, other family, animals, plants)
> - Environmental concerns

I'll add dislike for travel, which affects some of our contributors.

> So when you are considering whether it is worth the money and effort
> to organise PTGs or similar events, I'd like you also to consider
> those being excluded by such activities. It is not without a reason
> that IRC and emails have been settled upon as preferred means of
> communication. I'm not saying that physical meetings should be dropped
> altogether, but maybe more effort can be placed into providing means
> of remote participation, which might at least reduce some effects.
> [0] http://lists.openstack.org/pipermail/openstack-dev/2018-March/127991.html
> [1] https://governance.openstack.org/tc/reference/opens.html
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Keep in mind that the alternative to the Project Teams Gathering is not 
no Project Teams Gathering, it is projects meeting face-to-face after 
each of them organizied their own meeting. These used to be called 
mid-cycle meetups and the majority of them used to be held in the United 
States. Now I can't predict what will happen in the future, but should 
there be a void in frequency of face-to-face meetings that the PTG is 
currently filling, I would not be surprised to see individual projects 
plan their own face-to-face meetings of some kind regardless of what 
they are called.

Thank you,

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