(This entry is a stub for discussion purposes, and has not been corrected or endorsed by the Ubuntu development team -- Blame JohnMccabeDansted for any errors, or better yet fix them.)
The purpose of the Ubuntu-devel list is a list which all Ubuntu developers should read. Unfortunately due to the high volume of posts, many Ubuntu developers have not been able to keep up with the posts.
For this reason, the Ubuntu development team would like to limit discussion on the core ubuntu-devel list to uncontroversial proposals with well thought out solutions. The Ubuntu-devel list is not so much a list for community discussion (this is what ubuntu-sounder is for), but rather like a formal board-meeting for Ubuntu developers.
While mails proposing solutions, and constructive discussion are welcome in ubuntu-devel, it may be wise to discuss your ideas on ubuntu-sounder first. Even if the idea already has a well though out solution, there may be a special purpose ubuntu development list better suited than ubuntu devel:
Suggestions for improvements to upstream packages are more appropriate on the upstream mailing lists.
Bug reports should be reported using launchpad. Due to the high volume of the devel list, the ubuntu team appreciates it if you do not post bug reports to ubuntu-devel.
(by Ivan Krstic) The posting rules for this list really are very simple: if you're having a problem with Ubuntu that you really want fixed, it doesn't go on this list, it goes to the bugtracker, no matter how important your problem is to you. If you want to *discuss* an aspect of Ubuntu or its development, it goes on this list.
"Implement this feature! Now!" is not a discussion. Neither is, in the general case, "why doesn't Ubuntu do <x>?", which is usually just a restatement of the former. "<x> doesn't work for me!" doesn't work either.
"Ubuntu doesn't do <x>. Here's a pointer to the spec I just wrote on the wiki explaining how such functionality would work, and where I described an approach to implementing it. Thoughts?" goes on this list. So rule of thumb: if you're expecting discussion, this is the place to post. If you're expecting immediate action, it's not.
(Of course, there are exceptions, and these are just the general guidelines, but if people adhered to them, the traffic on this list would be significantly reduced.)
Examples of off-topic topics
Bug-reports: use launchpad instead.
Presenting complaints and issues without including a technical solution: Use ubuntu-sounder instead.
Non-technical problems, E.g. PR issues: Use ubuntu-sounder instead.
Announcements of unofficial Ubuntu sister projects such as Nexenta the OpenSolaris/Ubuntu port.
Is there an appropriate list for announcements relating to Ubuntu derivatives that are not endorsed by the Ubuntu team? (E.g. Nexenta, the OpenSolaris/Ubuntu port).