This is a part of the FESCo Elections Interviews series. Voting is open to all Fedora contributors. The voting period starts on Thursday, 19 November and closes promptly at 23:59:59 UTC on Thursday, 3 December 2020.

Interview with Fabio Valentini

  • Fedora Account: decathorpe
  • IRC: decathorpe (found in #fedora-devel, #fedora-java, #fedora-rust, #fedora-meeting*)
  • Fedora User Wiki Page


Why do you want to be a member of FESCo and how do you expect to help steer the direction of Fedora?

Having been an active Fedora community member for almost six years, a member of the Packaging Committee for three years, I want to continue to help steer Fedora towards a bright future.

How do you currently contribute to Fedora? How does that contribution benefit the community?

I am currently the only active maintainer of the Java stack (Maven, Ant, etc.) after it was abandoned by the previous maintainers in favor of modules. I am also one of the most active maintainers of the Rust stack, and the lone maintainer of the packages for the Pantheon Desktop Environment. I am also the developer of fedora-update-feedback, which I like to advertise as “fedora-easy-karma on steroids”, and the Rust libraries that it is built on top of.

How should we handle cases where Fedora’s and Red Hat Enterprise Linux’s needs conflict in an incompatible way?

I would advocate to look for creative solutions that resolve such conflicts, if at all possible – be it by asking the Fedora community, or even the entire FOSS community for input. If no solution that is satisfactory for the needs of both projects can be found, then fedora should be able to diverge from what needs to happen for RHEL – Fedora does not solely exist as a testing ground for RHEL, after all, and should be able to change and innovate independently, where and if it makes sense to do so.

What else should community members know about you or your positions?

I was – and still am – disappointed by the way the transition from
pagure to GitLab for was announced and communicated with the Fedora community. Even after the AMA and multiple discussions, it still looks like we will lose many features when – or if – the switch is made, just after pagure has finally gained almost all the missing features that were lost when pkgdb2 was shut down. I also believe that moving away from pagure sends the wrong message to the FOSS community, and looks like poor stewardship of a project that was initially developed for Fedora, but is just starting to get more widely used and to get a community beyond that of Fedora.

I think that while Modularity might have unique features that are required
for the development and support of a long-lived and slow-moving distribution like RHEL, I don’t think that those benefits apply to Fedora, but rather, it seems to cause (both technical and personal) friction and problems with our short release cycle.