Packager sponsor responsibilities

Packager Sponsors are maintainers that have a good record of maintaining packages, doing reviews and assisting others with the processes and procedures of Fedora. Sponsors act as mentors for new contributors to help point them to areas they would like to contribute, assist them with processes and procedures and assist them when they need general guidance. Sponsors may also be called on by FESCo to talk to a contributor that doesn’t seem to be living up to their Package maintainer responsibilities. Every Fedora package maintainer should have a sponsor.

The following is an outline of some of the expectations of what a sponsor should be doing for their sponsorees. These are just ideas, a packager sponsor should generally plan on being able to help or direct the packager to a place to find help with any Fedora issues that may arise.

Help answer maintainers' questions

Packager sponsors should be available to their sponsored maintainers to answer questions. It’s up to the sponsor if they wish to be available via IRC, email, bugzilla, mailing list posts, phone or the like. In the event a sponsor is unable to answer a question, they should escalate it to the appropriate mailing list, FESCo, Fedora Council or the like and get an answer passed back.

Questions sponsors should answer in particular are all the questions related with practical aspects of Fedora (Packaging Guidelines, Build system, VCS, FAS, updates…​).

Guide the sponsored maintainer in the Fedora Project

Packager sponsors should also be able to guide (or coerce) the sponsored packager in other aspects of Fedora. For example, point to maintainer policies appropriately, help the sponsored maintainer to feel at ease in the Fedora community, and explain what Fedora is and what it is not.

Fix issues in sponsored maintainers' packages

If one of your sponsored maintainers is unable to fix an issue in their package(s) you should be able to step in and either provide a fix or help them find a fix from other resources. This might include pushing a security update when the maintainer is unavailable, applying a patch, removing an improperly built package, or other time or security sensitive issue. It could also mean sending a message to the devel list asking for help or coaching the packager in finding the upstream mailing list and requesting help there. Note that the maintainer should be shown the fix and how to manage the issue moving forward.

Revoking Sponsorship

A sponsor may elect to revoke their sponsorship of a maintainer in rare and extreme situations.

These situations might include: A maintainer that no longer wishes to contribute to Fedora, a maintainer that refuses to follow guidelines, or irreconcilable differences between the maintainer and the Sponsor. In this event it is the responsibility of the Sponsor to orphan the maintainer’s packages, and do any other needed cleanups unless the maintainer finds another Sponsor.

FESCo should be notified of the reasons why a sponsorship is being revoked.

Sponsorship Duration

Sponsorship of a maintainer begins when the Sponsor approves them in the Fedora Account System.

Sponsorship of a maintainer ends when that sponsorship is revoked or when that maintainer themselves becomes a Sponsor.

Who Sponsors the Sponsors?

Once a maintainer has been granted sponsorship status (via a vote of existing sponsors), that Sponsor will be held accountable by FESCO and not their previous Sponsor. More on becoming a sponsor.