[all][tc] Moving PTL role to "Maintainers"
thierry at openstack.org
Tue Mar 10 10:12:13 UTC 2020
Mohammed Naser wrote:
> I think it's time to re-evaluate the project leadership model that we
> have. I am thinking that perhaps it would make a lot of sense to move
> from a single PTL model to multiple maintainers. This would leave it
> up to the maintainers to decide how they want to sort the different
> requirements/liaisons/contact persons between them.
> The above is just a very basic idea, I don't intend to diving much
> more in depth for now as I'd like to hear about what the rest of the
> community thinks.
I agree that in the current age we need to take steps to avoid
overwhelming roles and long commitments. As others said, we also need to
preserve some accountability, but I don't think those goals are
The original design goal of the "PTL" system was to have a clear "bucket
stops here" for technical decisions at project-team level, as well as a
safety valve for contributors at large (through elections) to reset the
core reviewers team if it's gone wild. The "bucket stops here" power was
very rarely exercised (probably due to its mere existence). I'd agree
that today this is less needed, and we could have equal-power
maintainers/corereviewers. We still have the TC above project teams as a
safety valve, and we could agree that petitions from enough contributors
can trigger a reset of the core reviewers structure.
The real benefit of the "PTL" system today is to facilitate the work of
people outside the project team. When you try to put out a coordinated
release (or organize a PTG), having a clear person that can "speak for
the team", without having to get into specifics for each of our 60+
teams, is invaluable. That said, there is really no reason why that
clear person should be always the same person, for 6 months.
We've always said that those subroles (release liaison, meeting chair,
event liaison...) should be decomposed and delegated to multiple people.
That the PTL should only be involved if the role was not delegated. Yet
in most teams the PTL has trouble delegating and still fills all those
roles. We need to change the perception.
So one solution might be:
- Define multiple roles (release liaison, event liaison, meeting
chair...) and allow them to be filled by the team as they want, for the
duration they want, replaced when they want (would just need +1 from
previous and new holder of the role)
- Use the TC as a governance safety valve to resolve any conflict
(instead of PTL elections)
Thierry Carrez (ttx)
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