[Bitcoin-development] Concerns Regarding Threats by a Developer to Remove Commit Access from Other Developers

odinn odinn.cyberguerrilla at riseup.net
Thu Jun 18 22:49:43 UTC 2015

Hash: SHA1

Regarding this proposal from Mike Hearn to remove consensus process
from the BIP, which I think is unsound philosophy.  I will address
this briefly below.

On 06/18/2015 09:05 AM, Mike Hearn wrote:
> So then: make a proposal for a better process, post it to this
> list.
> Alright. Here is a first cut of my proposal. It can be inserted
> into an amended BIP 1 after "What belongs in a successful BIP?".
> Let me know what you think.
> The following section applies to BIPs that affect the block chain 
> consensus rules or the peer to peer protocol and thus require
> changes to Bitcoin Core.
> Once a draft BIP has been submitted to bitcoin-development for 
> consideration, the Bitcoin Core maintainer will deliver a
> preliminary yes/no verdict within three weeks.

For many things, that will simply be too fast. It is better to allow
the primary maintainer to collaborate with other people who normally
work on the code and determine what the schedule will be based on
life, volume of work, and so on.

> This verdict may be informed by the debate that has taken part in
> the previous three weeks. If more time is required, the maintainer
> is required to request an extension from the BIP author, who may
> then elect to force an immediate decision (risking a no), or
> choosing to allow more time.

Again, this three week thing doesn't work.  But assume for a moment
that there is a certain amount of time that is such and so and it is
set by the maintainer.  The notion that the maintainer would be
"required" to request an extension from the BIP author is sheer
lunacy.  There is no need to codify the actions of the project
maintainer such that he/she would be needing to be subject to the
whims of whatever BIP author.  In like manner, a BIP author should not
have to be subject to forever delay of a BIP due to inaction of a
maintainer, but should have an answer regarding whether it can be
assigned a number, published as draft and so forth after a reasonable
time.  To me, a "reasonable time" is something that should be
discussed amongst the maintainer, those who work regularly on code,
and the BIP author.

> The verdict will meet the following criteria:
> * It will address the latest version of the BIP at the time the 
> verdict is rendered.
> * In case of a rejection, it will spell out and describe the
> technical rationale for this decision. Opinions held by other
> people are not considered technical rationales: if the maintainer
> agrees with a technical point made during discussion, he must own
> that opinion for himself. Therefore no BIP will be rejected on
> grounds of controversy, disagreement, lack of consensus or
> otherwise.

No, this is ridiculous, because the notion that "no BIP will be
rejected on grounds of controversy, disagreement, lack of consensus,
or otherwise," is clearly an attempt to do away with consensus models
of business, and it is also not a very logical statement because
controversy and disagreement are a natural part of... coming to what
eventually is an agreement.

> * In case of rejection, the maintainer will provide a clear,
> specific list of actionable steps the BIP author can take next. For
> example, a list of what changes would address the technical
> objections raised.

This above section I agree with.

 In case the maintainer believes no change could ever make
> the BIP acceptable, the list must consist of instructions for how
> to create a patch set and, in the case of changes to the consensus 
> rules, how to initiate a hard fork.

This above section I do not agree with because of the obvious bias in
favor of the hard fork.  Everything here seems to be aligned to push
for hard fork, hard fork, hard fork.  It's like the author can't tear
his mind off it.

> A BIP, even once rejected, may live on in the BIPS repository,
> though its entry in the index may be sorted below others. The BIP
> author may update the BIP with a summary of any resulting
> discussion. As such a summary may be inherently contentious in case
> of a dispute, the authors wording of that summary is final and may
> not be subject to meta-debate.
This doesn't seem right at all.

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