User:Dwd/Board 2019

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Dave Cridland Not For Board 2019


I'm Dave. Hello. I've previously been on the Board a couple of times, including chairing it one year. There's more info at My user page. I definitely do not want to chair it this year, and I don't really want to be on it.


Yes, it seems odd, I know. I'd rather concentrate on Council. But two years of chairing that have made me think there are some meta-problems that need addressing. So here I am, standing for Board.

Okay, you got me. What are these meta-problems?

There's two. Ready?


I think we could do much better at outreach. There's a load of people who've not heard of XMPP. These are people who are, by and large, more likely to use some consumer-grade messaging anyway. We gain little by aiming our marketing at users, quite honestly. There are also many groups who've heard of XMPP and are firmly convinced it's dead.

But lots of organisations do use XMPP. It's fundamental to several industries, in fact. I think we might do better by ensuring XMPP as a "product" is easier to use in these scenarios, and also better understood to be the excellent solution it is.

There's a lot of things we can do here, but one of them is ensuring we get speaking slots at conferences, for example, and get people to relevant conferences such as IETFs etc. So, I'd like to use actual funds to get actual people to actual conferences.

If someone else wants to do this and save me the effort of organising it, then great - step up and do it, and don't vote for me.


Council's job is to ensure that the specifications we produce represent the best the community can do.

This is remarkably difficult to do if discussions happen in a plethora of places, often out of sight. That also opens us, as an organisation, to various terrifying IPR issues that I'd rather avoid.

I don't think mailing lists are working. I don't think they're attracting people into the community. This is a shame, because when people use them, it's really useful - the discussion is available to everyone, it can easily be searched and linked to, and so on. Unfortunately, because it's also quite awkward to use, people often use chatrooms instead. And why not, we're an IM protocol, right?

But chatrooms are really hard as well - it's virtually impossible for us to reference an interesting discussion, and as often as not the first I've heard of it is when someone says, in a Council meeting, "Oh, yes, this was discussed and I think they said something about, erm..."

I offer no solutions here. What I'd like to do is get some ideas on the table where we can easily collate discussions relating to a particular XEP or issue together. I've no clue what this would look like. But I'd like to get the XSF to get a group together to look at this and get some ideas, and maybe even some code, together for a solution. This is a big task. I'd hope to get just a list of requirements for our discussion channels together, but if we can get something more, that'd be amazing.

Maybe someone else is happy to lead this. If so, vote for them.


I'm standing for Board somewhat reluctantly because I think there are a couple of important things we should be doing as an organisation. If the outcome of my standing is that someone else takes these on and champions them within the Board, that would be an excellent outcome for me. But if not, and if you also think these problems are worth tackling, then vote for me and I'll do my very best to get them sorted.