My resignation as president of the FreeBSD Project.

Jordan K. Hubbard jkh at
Wed Feb 5 20:53:47 PST 1997

This short notice is just to announce my resignation as President
of the FreeBSD Project, effective immediately, coinciding with the
elimination of that position.

This is entirely my own decision and was not prompted by anyone
on the core team - if anything, they will probably be as surprised
as anyone at the news (except for David & John D., with whom I've
already discussed the matter).

I do this for several reasons, all equally important:

1. The position of President has always been somewhat at-odds with
   our democratic core team structure and purely titular since to
   give the president any real "power" would also destroy the carefully
   balanced dynamic of core, and that would hardly be a desirable outcome.

   The reason the position of "President" was originally created at all
   was to give ISVs and other corporate contacts a more official-sounding
   person to talk to, and while this has been valuable to a certain extent
   I don't think that it's quite proven useful enough to justify the
   further existance of the position.  As it is, it only creates the
   illusion of a "super core member", which the president is not, and
   creates false expectations of authority.

2. The president is generally assumed to be talking for FreeBSD at all times,
   depriving the wearer of that particular thorny crown of the right
   to voice strong opinions or otherwise be outspoken without damaging
   the reputation of the project.  I'm not a punch-pulling kind of guy
   (as you no-doubt already guessed) and I almost certainly never will be,
   so it's time for me to have my own voice back and be able to talk to
   people without it being taken as implicit that I'm somehow speaking
   for all of core.  If being "presidential" also means constantly
   turning the other cheek then I'll never be presidential enough and it's 
   just not an adjustment I care to make (I'm not that kind of person) so
   I should step down from that responsibility.

3. Dropping back to core team status will make it easier for me to
   shed additional FreeBSD responsibilities, should I decide that I
   need to do that in the future, and get some semblance of a life
   back.  I've been doing this for 4 years now and I'm tired.  Just how
   tired I will need to evaluate before making any further decisions, but at
   least the burden of this artificial position will no longer be mine.
   It will, in fact, be no ones' and I think this is a vast improvement.

In discussions with David and John, it was also expressed that the
position was never really that popular with the core team and that
my stepping down should coincide with the complete elimination of
an unnecessary and somewhat flawed position, and so it will be.

So, as of now the FreeBSD Project now longer has a President.  It is
run purely by the core team, as it always was in truth, and now
I'm just the PR guy, release engineer and plain old run-of-the-mill
core team member.  As if that wasn't enough. :-)


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