The Ubuntu Forums are a significant part of Ubuntu community support. They provide both support and advice as well as a way to relax and talk Ubuntu--the forums have contributed and will continue to contribute to the success and development of Ubuntu as an operating system and community.
The scope of this document is to identify what an active forums contributor is and how activity in the Ubuntu Forums can lead to Ubuntu Membership.
Ubuntu membership generally recognizes significant and sustained contributions to Ubuntu. An active Forums contributor is held to the same standards, but the main focus of activity is in the Ubuntu Forums. Some examples of possible types of Forums contributions include:
- Helpful support posts
- Positive and encouraging Forums community focused activities that make new members feel welcome and help them find the resources they need
- High quality posts that inform, support, draw attention to useful resources, share useful ideas, and/or enable easier involvement in the wider Ubuntu community
- Encouraging good culture and behaviour in the Ubuntu Forums without being pedantic or demeaning
- Good work as a staff member - People who have gained Ubuntu membership through forum contributions will usually be considered first when new staff are selected, although this is not a hard and fast rule. Current staff who are not yet Ubuntu Members will have their hard work and dedication rewarded.
Remember, these are only a few possible types of contributions. There are many additional methods of contributing that are not listed. The main criteria for consideration will be "a sustained and real contribution to the quality of the Ubuntu Forums and through that to the wider Ubuntu community." We expect a minimum of six months of consistent involvement. Applicants must either be infraction-free or must not have had an active infraction for at least one year.
Preparing Your Application
The application itself is very similar to what you would do if you were to apply for membership through a Regional Membership Board. You will want to follow the general procedure, but you will want to make sure that your wiki page and testimonials focus on your Forums contributions. If your contributions are more spread out among the different parts of the community, you should apply for membership through a Regional Membership Board instead. Once your wiki page is ready, read the sticky post in Ubuntu Membership Applications and then create a new thread.
This new thread should have the following:
Easy to read thread title, including your username e.g. Membership Application: Joeb454
A link to your wiki page on wiki.ubuntu.com. This is where all activities that you consider as foundational for membership should be listed clearly, especially those in the forums since they are the basis by which the FC are granting membership. Think of this as a resume and the forum thread as an interview. Please see this wiki page for a sample of the sort of activity we are looking to find. Once you have posted your forum thread, please put a link to it near the top of your wiki page to make both easy to find.
Please bear in mind that while it makes life easier if you detail forum contributions on your wiki, it won't affect your application if it's 'barebones'. This is after all a way to recognise contributions to Ubuntu via UbuntuForums.
A link to your Launchpad page at launchpad.net, to show that you have signed the Ubuntu Code of Conduct.
Applicants should also invite other forum members to post a comment in their application thread in support of their application.
The approval process is now a rolling one, and applicants may post their application threads at any time. Application threads will be left open until the Forum Council has made a decision on the application, so that others may post comments and testimonials. The period between the application being made and the FC's decision will normally be between one month and two months but may need to be longer.
When the Forum Council is ready to take a vote on a particular applicant, it will do so at a monthly FC meeting. Forum Council members will take into account their own knowledge of the applicant, testimonials posted to the applicant's application thread or wiki page, and any staff comments posted in the staff area of the forum. Applicants are welcome to attend the irc FC meeting, indeed they are encouraged, for when their application is considered, but this is not mandatory. The FC Agenda can be found here. For those who have not used irc before and who do not have a configured irc client, you can join the #ubuntu-meeting channel using a web browser here.
Should the FC need to interview the applicant before coming to a decision, a forum admin will contact the applicant to make the necessary arrangements.
Benefits of membership
In addition to all of the benefits granted by Ubuntu Membership, you will also gain the privilege of voting for members of the Forums Moderator team if that process is chosen by the Forums Council. Under certain circumstances, the FC can revert to the fallback process outlined here. Only members of the Ubuntu Forum Members team in the Launchpad team may vote.