User:Robbat2/So you want to join the Infrastructure team

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This is Robbat2's writeup of the discussion that normally takes place with new members joining the Infrastructure team (shortened as Infra below).

The goal is to set expectations, both that Infra has of new members, and those that new members should have of Infra.

Most of gentoo operates on a more traditional open source maintainer ethos.

Infra is committed to open source, but also tries to set a stringent ethical & moral standard.

Somebody else put it as: "Would doing $X get me fired in a company that isn't open-minded?"

As a Infra member, you will have the *ability* to poke into things people consider private but you should NOT exercise that without reasonable justification. The implicit access to personal information is to be treated with the utmost care.

There is a login banner when you login to any Gentoo systems. It applies to Infra members as well as everybody else.

This might seem harsh, but unfortunately there have been abuses in the past (specific examples redacted).

In this vein, if you feel that there is something going on where you CANNOT be an unbiased participant, you should recuse yourself in part of it

A comrel member who is also Infra, and might call for somebody's retirement, cannot unilaterally retire devs.

They can call for their retirement XOR they can process it. Not both.

As another example, while Robbat2 leads the Infrastructure team, they are also the Foundation Treasurer. They CAN spent the money, but rely on checks & balances to review the purchasing and keep an eye on what's spent (very little money overall)

The short of it is that all power corrupts.

By being in a position of power, you must act in a trustworthy way, even if nothing bad happens, so that you are perceived as fair.

There is no salary. Treat it like a job, despite the lack of salary. There's also no expectation of specific hour commitments.

There is an informal probation period, during which existing Infra members or others in the community will be watching you more than otherwise, simply because you're new in Infra. They may step in to help you get acquainted with existing systems, and help you become a productive member of Infra.

There's the saying from Baden Powell, "Try and leave this world a little better than you found it." This doesn't mean fix everything right away. It means to make small improvements where you can, and not overly make a mess. We also know that you know that you can't make omelette without breaking a few eggs.

Infra doesn't have incident post-mortems in general, but we do hold to how a good post-mortem should be blameless: If you do break something, don't hide it. Own up to it, so others can help you towards fixing what's broken.

If you're willing to accept these conditions, welcome to Infra.