[Foundation-l] Community, collaboration, and cognitive biases

Michael Snow wikipedia at verizon.net
Fri Jun 11 15:45:51 UTC 2010

Aryeh Gregor wrote:
> On Fri, Jun 11, 2010 at 11:22 AM, Michael Snow <wikipedia at verizon.net> wrote:
>> The replies to my comment are missing the point. Sure, the developers
>> themselves need to be able to handle public criticism of their work,
>> just like wiki editors. But I was responding to Austin's comment in
>> particular about board members being cautious with their opinions. In
>> cases like that, there are additional concerns, like the propriety in
>> publicly critiquing someone's work when you also can presumably
>> influence their continued employment. That requires that certain
>> feedback go through other channels, even when the same feedback could be
>> given openly if it were coming from the general public.
> Oh, okay.  I was about to respond to you too, but I did miss the
> point.  :)  What you seem to be saying is that code review should be
> public, but people like board members shouldn't review code because
> criticism might make people worry that they'll be fired or something.
> I think you're overestimating the morale impact of negative code
> review -- in serious review-then-commit systems like Mozilla uses,
> virtually no code gets accepted in its original form without
> modifications, even when written by experienced developers.
Well, board members shouldn't review code because they're mostly not 
qualified to do so. The comment as it relates to morale is a more 
general point, it's not limited to the specific context of MediaWiki 
development. So it's less about how the process side of code review 
should work, and more about the organizational challenges for the 
foundation in interacting with community or public process. I think 
that's also related to what Rob was trying to say in different terms.

--Michael Snow

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