Release schedule plans

Gervase Markham gerv at
Mon Jan 10 22:29:23 UTC 2005

Vlad Dascalu wrote:
> Gerv, could you please leave your personal interpretations of what you 
> consider rude and what not when you push the "Reply" button?

This has really gone beyond my personal opinion. I really don't think 
telling the project maintainer that: "You no longer have the discretion
needed in order to take decisions on a case by case basis" could be 
considered as anything but rude.

> We aren't going to get very far away if we keep replying to the 
> "emotional" part of the emails. Let's focus instead of the "rationale" 
> part of them. If some of us finds it useful, including me, I propose to 
> re-wrote in our minds each email so that all emotions, rudeness etc are 
> dropped and all the rationale thing is kept. Then reply only to that one.

That simply doesn't work.

For a long time, I found that people reacted badly to things I said. 
(Some people on this list may remember that time; one or two may argue 
it's still not completely behind me.) My thought was always "oh, come 
on, disregard that part you think is rude and focus on my point" - just 
as you've suggested we do to your emails.

But I finally realised that people just can't do that. Humans react in a 
certain way to both the content and the tone of communications, and you 
can't separate the two out. If you want people to take on board and 
consider your thoughts, the way you express them is at least as 
important as the point you are making.

I found that a really hard lesson to learn - and I only learnt it when 
someone sat me down and explained to me how important it is, and why. 
(It took them a few goes - I'm someone who finds it hard to do something 
without understanding exactly why I'm doing it.) Which is why I'm 
writing this email to you now. I'm no communications wizard, but I want 
to pass on what I've learned, because it works. I get my way around the 
office a lot more these days, not because I argue more forcefully, or 
because my points are better, but because I say things more in a way 
that makes people want to listen to and accommodate my views.

> I'd suggest you guys try the "rationale" thing approach and ignore 
> whatever you might consider rude or impolite, because it really wasn't 
> in my intention. The alternative, if you can't filter emotions out, is 
> for me to stop writing anything at all, which I think will be less 
> productive for Bugzilla development.

I think that if you do that until we release 2.18, it will be *more* 
productive for Bugzilla development - both because we'll release 2.18 
faster, and because your good suggestions will make the releasing of 
2.20 and onwards better and faster too.


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