GLEP:7
Title:New ombudsman position
Version:1.2
Last-Modified:2003/07/19 12:09:20
Author:Grant Goodyear <g2boojum at gentoo.org>
Status:Accepted
Type:Standards Track
Content-Type:text/x-rst
Created:6-Jul-2003, 28-Jul-2003
Post-History:

Contents

Abstract

This GLEP proposes that we extend the current proposed management structure by adding a position of Ombudsman that would fall under devrel, qa, and pr. An ombudsman is one who has been assigned to impartially investigate complaints and settle disputes.

Motivation

Given the impressive numbers of both Gentoo developers and users, it is inevitable that there will be occasional clashes between developers and managers, developers and developers, and developers and users. Right now there is no mechanism to prevent such disputes from escalating out of control.

Specification

One developer (and one backup) will be appointed as ombudsmen. This positions should be far from a full-time job. It would appear as part of the devrel, qa, and pr projects (inasmuch as qa and pr both involve developer-user relations). Infrastructure requirements are an ombudsman.gentoo.org web page and a ombudsman@gentoo.org e-mail alias.

Rationale

One traditional method (circa early 1800s in Sweden, apparently [1]) for managing disputes is to have an impartial individual whose job it is to investigate complaints and mediate settlements. A quick search on Google [2] reveals numerous government agencies, universities, and industries that employ official ombudsmen. The key requirement for an ombudsman to be effective is support from management and trust from users and developers -- the ombudsmen must be considered by all to be reasonably impartial.

Backwards Compatibility

No conflicts.

References

[1]http://www.rit.edu/~022www/defhis.shtml
[2]http://www.google.com