The Ubuntu Community: Collaborator or Contributor

There’s been a lot of discussion about the role of the Ubuntu Community in the past few hours. Lots of upset feelings bubbling around. I know my previous post came out of venting some of my frustrations.

I think the biggest problem we have in the Ubuntu Community is the difference between collaborator or contributor. Collaborators work together to make things happen. Contributors just add their own stuff to an existing work. The disconnect is some members of the community thought they were collaborators, and not merely contributors. And this latest round has shown that divide more clearly. The community is free to contribute, but collaboration will only happen when the hard landscape has been drawn out.

And that’s where the community and Canonical need to define their relationship: are we collaborating on the future of Ubuntu, or merely contributing to it.

I think the sooner we can come to terms with this question, the sooner we can start healing a lot of these hurt feelings.

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  1. Stephen says:

    My complaint with Ubunutu is that they’ve totally dropped support for older hardware. First, they have a fairly fast life cycle. Second, the new versions require video cards that my otherwise modern 32 bit Athlon simply can’t support, even if i had the money to upgrade it. And, the new graphics is pointless eye candy. And, the new UI makes it very difficult to do much of anything the way that i’m used to doing it. So what? You can just not upgrade, right? But what if you want to upgrade some application software? For example, what if you want to install Chrome? You can’t. The Ubuntu repositories are gone. They’re FUCKING GONE! So, if you didn’t happen to have some shared library that Chrome wants, you can’t install it. How should i have known that i should have installed everything in the repository before it’s end of life? You don’t do that, if you want a maximally secure system. If i wanted crappy security, i could install Windows. So now, i’m looking for a new distribution. I’ve been betrayed.

  2. Alan Bell says:

    yeah, you are right they have FUCKING GONE to and you can point your sources.list at them

  3. Alan Bell says:

    back to the subject of the blog post, I think you are about right. Community 2.0 consists of people building for the Ubuntu Platform. I am not sure if the expectations that these people come with include peer support and community governance, but they might do. What I hope can happen is that Community 2.0 doesn’t conflict with Community 1.0 and both can be installed in parallel.

    • craig says:

      And that’s the distressing part; the idea of two communities. It’s as if we have to have two concepts for community, and the hope is they’ll play nice with each other.

      Communities got Ubuntu the building blocks for the ~9 years of Ubuntu. I’m not so sure moving to a contributor-only arrangement is the best solution.