U.s.oo.o/User Community Roles
This page is a spin-off of the Constitution page and specifically aims to provide a collaboration vehicle to agree the OOo User Community Roles for the users of the site (Users).
- 1 User
- 2 Guest
- 3 Member
- 4 Volunteer
- 5 Roles available to Volunteers
- 6 Footnotes
a User is any person who enters or uses the web site in any way, even if that person only visited the home page of the web site.
A Guest is a User who can search and access the information provided by the site, but cannot post or modify its content. No registration or validation is required to be a Guest. The site is open to all. (1).
A Member is a User who has successfully completed the site registration process(2). A Member can also post or modify the information content of the site, within the content rules of the site.
A Volunteer is a Member who takes an active part in the life of the site and commits to defined responsibilities for a site role. A Member can request to become a Volunteer. Volunteers are collectively referred to as the User Community Volunteers (UCV). There is no cap on the size of the UCV.
The Member must apply to become a Volunteer though the registration process(2), and, if successful, will be elected to Volunteer status within the UCV. For a Member to be successful, some evidence of sustained commitment will normally be required; for example, numerous postings and wiki contributions, or a number of material articles over a six month period. An equivalent track record in an associated community will normally be acceptable, for example, one of the other active OpenOffice.org or Linux related forums.
The UCV is intended to comprise the community of the active Members within the site, Volunteers may, therefore, revert back to a normal Member.
- A Volunteer may resign from Volunteer status.
- A six month period with no activity will automatically propose removal of Volunteer status.
- Any Volunteer may propose the removal of Volunteer status for any other Volunteer. Justification must be included with the request. For example, repeated abuse or disregard of the site, the membership, or standing instructions endorsed by the UCV.
The removal of Volunteer status is also controlled through the registration process(2), and where this occurs the individual will revert to normal Member status. A Member can always reapply for Volunteer status.
Volunteers are regarded as trusted members of the site and therefore have available elevated privileges associated with such trust:
- Full voting privileges within the UCV.
- Ability to upload images and attachments to the site.
- Ability to use HTML in posts; most forum packages allow HTML as an option, and the layout is easier than in BBcode-style mark-up languages.
- Ability to blog.
- Eligibility for site roles.
Roles available to Volunteers
The following User Community Roles are available to Volunteers. Notwithstanding this, the list of site roles and responsibilities may evolve over time under change control and endorsement through the UCV voting process.
Individuals that are willing to take on the responsibilities necessary to perform a due diligence in the following areas:
- Help maintain the security of the host system by:
- Maintaining a good working relationship with designated network administration staff at Sun Microsystems, Hamburg Germany.
- Maintain contact with the vendor's / supplier's information service for any applications run on the server.
- Take agreed upon steps when a security announcement is made by the vendors / suppliers.
- Follow agreed upon steps if a security breach of any application on the server is suspected. For example: notified by a board user that they suspect a problem.
- Perform steps necessary to carry out agreed upon configuration control procedures on application level services running on the server. During modifications of the applications, application of patches, reconfigurations.
- Follow agreed upon steps / actions to implement and maintain a disaster recovery plan ( e.g. off-site storage of backups, off-site storage of application modifications, included files and configuration settings).
- Support the Service Administrators and Content managers by performing the following tasks:
- Create or apply modifications to the applications source or configuration files as needed.
- Configure client communication settings for the service application.
- Configure server settings for the service application.
- Database indexing.
- Database backups ( working with network admins ).
- Install / configure support packages ( php libs, caching systems, etc ).
These individuals must also comply with all Standard Operating and Security Procedures defined by the hosting provider ( SUN Microsystems ), and to take whatever reasonable actions that the hosting provider requires of them in order to receive necessary host computer access privileges.
Individuals that are willing to take on the responsibilities necessary to maintain an application level service. For example the Forum service Administrator would perform the following, and other, functions:
- May add, edit, delete, and reorder the forums, categories, and links.
- Manage User Accounts
- Manage Group Accounts
- Manage Board Level Settings ( Email, Template, etc )
- Support the Service Moderator's
These individuals are selected by the UCV alone. The service administrator role is enabled through and provided by the relevant service application. No action is required by the hosting provider to grant these privileges.
Moderator is a supporting administration role supported by some application services. For example in the case of forums, moderators have an elevated level of privilege which enables them to modify or delete user posts that violate site policy (e.g. SPAM or obscenity). Service Moderators are selected by the UCV Voting Process. No action is required by the hosting provider to grant these privileges.
These individuals are selected by the UCV alone. The Content Manager role is enabled through and provided by the relevant service application. Where required Content Manager's may be granted User Account Interactive Access and MySQL datadase access.
The Ombudsman's role and responsibilities include:
- Administration and oversight of all polls
- The ombudsman can mandate that any specific vote be opened to the general membership, where he or she feels that there is a reasonable case for doing so.
- NON-Voting member of all change control boards to represent the general membership. (do we have a process for this?)
- Management and arbitration of Membership complaints.
To avoid conflict of interest the Ombudsman cannot hold any other User Community Role.
Chronicler — Tie-breaker, spokesperson
- Shall be the official spokesperson for the organization on issues related to the interests and purpose.
- This person is not to vote unless there is a tie that freezes the issue at hand.
The Projects Manager
- Shall assist in infrastructural development so that documentation of projects is done to some extent.
- Maintains the projects' wiki pages.
- Shall take charge of post-mortems of projects so useful information can be amassed as to what structures worked and what didn't.
Group Publicity Person — OO.o Evangelist
- Shall come up with fun and useful "virtual events" that promote the use of OO.o and the support forums.
- Shall abide by all local regulations and group agreements when promoting the organization or its views,
Limitations on Site Access
Some transactional rate limiting mechanisms may apply to prevent robot users from degrading the performance of the site for normal interactive users. We also need to consider whether we bar certain users and / or IP address/domains (based on bots, spam, abuse, etc).
Site Registration Process
The Site Registration Process has two variants:
- The standard process is for a Guest who wants to become a Member; a Member can post, a Guest can not. The main purpose for registration, is is to associate changes made by a user with an identity. For example, a common forum feature is to list posts by author. The registration process will minimize SPAM bots through use of tools such as a "Captcha" or equivalent. A valid contact email address is required along with a response to an email sent to the submitted address. The email address is retained as confidential and not published to general members without authorization by the Member. The email address provides a means of contacting the members, but is only available to the system (for automated requested contacts such as a forum topic has been updated) and to members with specific roles such as a system administrator or moderator. A Guest can not become a member without a valid, verified, contact address. There are various other optional fields that the User can specify.
- A stricter process controls the transition from Member to Volunteer, and from Volunteer to normal Member. Volunteers may be appointed to trusted roles, so the UCV must have confidence in the provenance and credentials of the Member.
- A forum exists for discussing the Registration Process. Although only Volunteers can post to this forum, all Members can view the forum(+).
- All applications for promotion to or removal from Volunteer status are posted to this forum as a new topic. Any Member can make an application through a Volunteer (for example the ombudsman) which typically contains a brief identity (name, country, work experience, etc.) and a short personal statement of why the candidate wishes to become a Volunteer.
- Any Volunteer may comment on the application.
- Any Volunteer may explicitly designate approval.
- Any Volunteer may explicitly designate a protest.
- The application is open for [two] weeks.
- If at the end of this period at least two approvals and no protest have been made then Volunteer status change is granted.
- The change is declined if there are not at least two approvals.
- If there are least two approvals and at least one protest, a vote of the UCV membership is performed under the standard UCV voting procedure.
- Where the application is declined, reapplication can be made after  months.
(+) There are issues of disclosure that we need to think about here. See the Talk page for further discussion on this.
UCV Voting Process
Members of the Volunteer site team may hold votes on topics within their areas of interest separate from those interests voiced by Registered or unregistered users of the site. Technical issues of interest to Volunteers may include any topic, including which issues will be decided by general Registered Member votes. Topics under consideration will be posted to a Forum category devoted to these issues and the results will be posted there as well. Registered members may comment on these issues or raise questions.
General Voting on issues of importance to the members regarding the site or the management will take place quarterly on the first Tuesday of January, April, July, and October. A Forum category will be set up devoted to these issues and the results will be posted there as well. Only registered site members will be able to vote in these quarterly events. In most cases, a simple majority vote will suffice. This means in the case of a stand-off, a vote will be rescheduled for the next quarter.