changelog policy change request

G. Milde g.milde at
Mon Nov 28 11:30:34 UTC 2005

On 25.11.05, Rafael Laboissiere wrote:
> * G. Milde <g.milde at> [2005-11-25 10:14]:
> > This goes with my experience, that the sorting of changes by contributor
> > creates a less usefull (for the end user) log. Problems arise also for the
> > cases:
> > 
> >   Joe changes A to B, Sam changes B to C  -> no need to mention B
> >   
> >   Joe introduces feature D, Sam realizes that this needs change E
> >   -> related changes should be grouped together.
> > I am not sure, whether it would be better to drop the "who" alltogether, or
> > e.g. to add initials or nicks:
> > A detailled info about who contributed what and when is still available at
> > the SVN logs.

> If you think that this format is more appropriate, I would have no problems
> in changing the Guidelines.

Of course I think, otherwise I would not have proposed the change ;-)

(IMHO the changelog should be targeted at the end-user of the package. As
bug-reports and questions will go to the mailing list, the responsible one
will get it and can react.)

But I would like to hear the opinion of Paul and Joerg on this.

> A not-so-unrelated issue: a heated debate is taking place now in
> debian-devel about the appropriateness of using a mailing list in the
> debian/changelog entries.  See the thread starting at:
> The origin of all this is the following bug report:

After browsing the thread, my impression was that the debate is a bit
too heated. 

  * the policy is clearly stating that this should be a real person
  * violating this is a bug (but not RC)
  * with the use prescribed by the policy, the generated field should actually
    be called "uploded-by" instead of "changed-by".
  * Whoever does not like this should not simply override the policy but
    discuss this on the policy list.
However, as this field is of minor importance to the end user (as opposed to
the "Maintainer" the whole issue should not bother us too much.
Rafael, if you could live with beeing seen as the "person that did the final
touched to the package before upload" (which you indeed are) and if you can
live with beeing falsely blamed for my bugs (while just having overseen them
before upload), I would ask you to change the 
   # Fix the trailer line in changelog automatically
   perl -ni -e 'if (not $done and /^ --/) {'\
   '              print (" -- Debian JED Group "'\
   in the build script so it produces the real builders Name and mail address.
   (And pass on any mail that might reach you because of this change to the


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