[openstack-dev] [tc][all] A culture change (nitpicking)

Dmitry Tantsur dtantsur at redhat.com
Wed May 30 10:11:12 UTC 2018


This is a great discussion and a great suggestion overall, but I'd like to add a 
grain of salt here, especially after reading some comments.

Nitpicking is bad, no disagreement. However, I don't like this whole discussion 
to end up marking -1's as offense or aggression. Just as often as I see 
newcomers proposing patches frustrated with many iterations, I see newcomers 
being afraid to -1.

In my personal experience I have two remarkable cases:
1. A person asking me (via a private message) to not put -1 on their patches 
because they may have problems with their managers.
2. A person proposing a follow-up on *any* comment to their patch, including 
important ones.

Whatever decision the TC takes, I would like it to make sure that we don't paint 
putting -1 as a bad act. Nor do I want "if you care, just follow-up" to be an 
excuse for putting up bad contributions.

Additionally, I would like to have something saying that a -1 is valid and 
appropriate, if a contribution substantially increases the project's technical 
debt. After already spending *days* refactoring ironic unit tests, I will -1 the 
hell out of a patch that will try to bring them back to their initial state, I 
promise :)


On 05/29/2018 03:55 PM, Julia Kreger wrote:
> During the Forum, the topic of review culture came up in session after
> session. During these discussions, the subject of our use of nitpicks
> were often raised as a point of contention and frustration, especially
> by community members that have left the community and that were
> attempting to re-engage the community. Contributors raised the point
> of review feedback requiring for extremely precise English, or
> compliance to a particular core reviewer's style preferences, which
> may not be the same as another core reviewer.
> These things are not just frustrating, but also very inhibiting for
> part time contributors such as students who may also be time limited.
> Or an operator who noticed something that was clearly a bug and that
> put forth a very minor fix and doesn't have the time to revise it over
> and over.
> While nitpicks do help guide and teach, the consensus seemed to be
> that we do need to shift the culture a little bit. As such, I've
> proposed a change to our principles[1] in governance that attempts to
> capture the essence and spirit of the nitpicking topic as a first
> step.
> -Julia
> ---------
> [1]: https://review.openstack.org/570940
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