[Wine] RFC: Potential idea to consolidate forums and lists

Paul Johnson baloo at ursine.ca
Thu Jun 19 18:09:58 CDT 2008

I'm making a request for comments in an effort to bring a minor but
nagging bug to some kind of multilaterally-beneficial conclusion, and
deliberately held off until after the 1.0 release in case this turns out
to be a bigger deal than originally anticipated.


The first proposed suggestion is that a more consistent method for
handling the forum/mailing list bridge situation is to consolidate both
on Google Groups, possibly a newsgroup instead of the mailing list.

To summarize the situation:  WineHQ relatively recently opened a web
forum bridged to the original mailing lists in an effort to make the
Wine community more accessible to the general public in preparation for
the 1.0 release.  Consequentially, this has lead to a sub-optimal
situation that has created needless distraction and headache over time.
The bridge required to maintain communications between the forum and the
mailing list does not honor threads, causing forum posts to start new
threads on the mailing list.  Creating further confusion, the forum
interface itself does not encourage users to set up quoting by default.

Google Groups was built from the ground up with both mailing list and
web forum functionality built in.

Pros of Google Groups vs the current situation:

      * Forum interface automatically sets up replies with quotes.
              * This ensures context is maintained if messages to the
                mailing list get lost or filtered.
      * Threading is 100% consistent between the forum and email.  
              * No more broken threads on the mailing list.
      * Familiar interface.
              * Everyone uses Google at /some/ point already.
              * The AppDB is already using Google for search.
      * No obvious conflict of interest with Google.
              * Google currently provides AppDB's search.
              * WineHQ is participating in the Summer of Code program.
      * No (additional) software to maintain
              * Frees CodeWeavers to spend more time dealing with wine
                instead instead of maintaining forum, mailing list and
                forum-to-list gateway software.

Potential cons:

      * Possibly not "forum-y" enough for "hard-core" forum users.
              * This has not been properly qualified.  Feedback?

An alternative suggestion that has been brought up, would be to fold
back into comp.emulators.ms-windows.wine, as it is listed by Google
Groups and well-carried on many news servers, including ISPs.  Potential
con:  No mailing list interface.  This could be overcome with readily
available news-to-list software, most of such GPL software is proven
capable to the task of making it seamless (less troublesome software to
maintain to accomplish this task).

I'm posting this to both the wine-users mailing list (so it should also
appear on the forum), as well as the Google Group created as a potential

Thanks for taking the time to hear this idea out; and thanks in advance
for providing feedback or constructive criticism.

Paul Johnson
baloo at ursine.ca
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