Andreas Barth and fellow Debian version 4 release manager Steve Langasek probably predicted a little bit of resentment from fellow contributors to the Linux project when they set up an "experiment" help fund their efforts. After all, they called it Dunc-Tank, which naturally reminds us of a really fun carnival sport.
While the rest of the team is getting paid nothing, as is the norm in open-source communities, Barth and Langasek have reportedly raised enough to pay themselves $6,000 each.
They probably didn't predict, though, that Dunc-Tank, which they said was designed to help speed the release of the next version of Debian, dubbed Etch, would have the exact opposite effect. A group of 17 developers, led by well-known Debian maintainer Joerg Jaspert, issued a position statement in October citing its disenchantment with the fund-raising effort.
"This whole affair already hurts Debian more than it can ever achieve. It already made a lot of people who have contributed a huge amount of time and work to Debian reduce their work. People left the project, others are orphaning packages...system administration and security work is reduced, and a lot of otherwise silent maintainers simply put off Debian work (to) work on something else." The release was scheduled for December 4; it is already two weeks late.
Barth is now calling the actions of those 17 Debian contributors childish.
"I think Dunc-Tank helped us with (the) release of Etch, but the help could have been greater if some people wouldn't behave as childish as they do." Barth wrote in a blog posting Tuesday.
I'm guessing that Barth's $6,000 isn't going toward Christmas gifts for the disgruntled Debian crew.