Some changes concerning DSA

Since march the DSA team uses a request tracker to handle all the requests that they get.

Therefore you should no more use the alias (DSA members only). The mailing list (DSA + local admins) is also scheduled for removal. Instead you should mail making sure to put “Debian RT” somewhere in the subject (crude but working spam prevention). By default, your ticket ends up in a private incoming queue. Up to now only DSA members had access to those queues. They moved most tickets in the public queue but it happened several times that this simple administrative burden took several weeks.

Since a few days, Matt Taggart and myself have been granted RT accounts with required privileges to handle tickets and move them between the various queues. So from now on, all tickets will be quickly moved in the public queue (when they don’t contain sensitive information of course). We’ll be able to do some triage and ping DSA members for urgent requests.

Matt and me have been trying to help out the DSA team for quite some time now, and while we’re not DSA with root rights, we’re in regular contact with the members (except Martin “Joey” Schulze who refuses to join the DSA IRC channel, who doesn’t use the request tracker and who doesn’t read the DSA mails either) and with several local admins. So if you have some troubles interacting with the DSA team, you can try to get in touch with us and we’ll see if we can help you.

In too many cases people contact directly individual DSA members (Joey in particular). Please refrain from doing so, other volunteers (who might help you) won’t notice your request. Furthermore systematic request tracker usage helps us identifying what is well handled and what’s not. And it’s not more complicated than a simple email for you.

Update: currently local admins are not subscribed to the request tracker. The RT setup will need some further adjustment for that, so the list can still be useful if you want to reach them.


  1. says

    Thanks, Raphaël (and Sam), for your continuous efforts to improve the DSA situation.

    Unfortunately, your announcement shocked me a bit. First, considering how many pieces of documentation reference, I consider it unacceptable to simply void that address.

    Furthermore, expecting the sender to include “Debian RT” in the subject is not spam protection but a major nuisance. Since I expect mails without the text in the subject to be silently discarded (which is the only sensible thing to do in today’s world), the effect of forgetting to add that subject at any point in time will have exactly the same effect as mailing DSA today: you’ll never know if or when your mail will be read. Claiming that you’ll notice when you don’t get an RT ticket confirmation is unrealistic in my eyes.

    Spam is a problem we all have to deal with, but there are very good ways of doing so today. Expecting the sender to keep your mailbox clean is not a solution.

    And if Joey is being so unccoperative, why is he still a DSA? Or have people actually tried to find out why he is not using RT or reading the lists?

  2. says

    The address is deprecated, it’s not yet “void”. When it will be “void”, I expect to have proper bounces with a pointer where needed (and much more advertisement than a blog entry).

    When you open a RT ticket, you get an auto-response. It’s precisely because of that that we can’t accept spam on this address. The auto-response let you know that your request has been recorded, and there’s always the web interface to check if your request is there.

    Concerning Joey, he’s the oldest DSA member of the team and while there’s no clear leader of the team, he can’t be fired except maybe by the DPL. I haven’t asked Joey why he behaves so, but I expect it’s out of frustration. He’s known to have had troubles with the ftpmasters and his teammates elmo/neuro are the ftpmasters. Joey avoids the discussion and it’s very difficult to have his opinion on this subject.