Debian Sponsoring Guidelines

Meeting Guidelines

How to have a Debian meeting without turning into a secret cabal

Sponsoring various kinds of Debian meetings (conferences, sprints, BSPs, etc.) is a good way to spend, actually invest, Debian money.

Nonetheless, Debian is a community of volunteers and we cannot rely on the fact that people will be able to attend meetings as they were "work" meetings. That is why organizers have to carefully balance the high efficiency that meetings offer (higher communication bandwidth than remote work, more focused people, more enthusiasm, more fun, etc.) with the risk of cutting out the rest of the community which cannot attend the meeting, for whatever reason.

Debian is very happy to sponsor developer meetings, but requests that the following sponsoring guidelines are respected, in order to minimize the risks outlined above.

The guidelines are neither absolute, nor complete, they are ... just general guidelines ! In case you hit a corner case not addressed by them please discuss it with <leader AT debian DOT org>.

The Guidelines

Hardware Guidelines

Buying hardware that can help improving specific parts of Debian is another good way of spending Debian money. We routinely buy servers and other parts of the Debian Project infrastructure administered by DSA.

But buying project hardware to be used by individual developers can be done as well. If you're working on a specific project area and you feel like your work is hindered by the fact you lack specific hardware or other material, the project can buy it for you in an attempt to remove the obstacle.

As usual, the DPL will be in charge of deciding whether to grant the request or not.

The following general principles will drive the choice:

  1. the request should be motivated (and the motivation will be disclosed), i.e. not "can the project buy $foo for me?", but "I'm working on $bar, but it is a PITA because I lack $foo and I can't afford buying it myself"
  2. once again, transparency is the rule: you should take care of periodically informing fellow developers of what you're doing with the hardware the project both for you (the usual "here is my last hack" blog post / mail would do)

As people might feel shy asking, hardware sponsoring can also go the other way around. If you think fellow developers might benefit from some hardware or other material to improve specific parts of Debian, you can advocate them for hardware sponsoring: discuss with them or with the DPL first, whatever you think is best.

General Guidelines

While the above guidelines have been written with specific purposes in mind, they are way more general. The underlying principle is that if you use Debian money, you should be transparent in the way you use them. That principle is general, and applies to any kind of Debian money usage.



Do you have comments ? Please mail them to <leader AT debian DOT org>.