Telemetry Policy - Remaining Questions

Jaroslaw Staniek staniek at
Tue Apr 3 16:16:10 UTC 2018

On 3 April 2018 at 10:42, Volker Krause <vkrause at> wrote:

> Thanks Lydia for getting this moving again!
> On Monday, 2 April 2018 22:56:31 CEST Lydia Pintscher wrote:
> > Hey Jaroslaw :)
> >
> > On Mon, Apr 2, 2018 at 10:28 PM, Jaroslaw Staniek <staniek at>
> wrote:
> > > Thanks for reminding me Lydia
> > >
> > > I've not forgotten this. While there's progress I do still see this as
> a
> > > pilot stage and do not think we're in a hurry given telemetry is
> something
> > > "extra" for a project development, not a core feature of any product.
> >
> > We are in a hurry now. We're waiting for projects to be able to start
> > using it and get us valuable insights about how our software is used.
> > We've been on it since last Akademy. Let's get it finished :)
> >
> > > Below I am referring to this version:
> > >
> _Policy&oldid=
> > > 78057
> > >
> > > tl;dr: Why discussing: Any deep change and limitation to projects'
> freedom
> > > needs to bring substantial benefits over drawbacks. Level of
> complexity of
> > > the contract for a project or individual developer needs to be
> balanced by
> > > real (not hypothetical) benefits.
> >
> > The benefits here for KDE are:
> > * we have a better understanding of our userbase leading hopefully to
> > better software
> > * we have a better understanding of our userbase leading hopefully to
> > better marketing
> > * we have a clear policy we can point our users to that explains how
> > we are handling their data and that is in line with our vision/what we
> > stand for.
> >
> > > I've studied the wiki page more in depth and I have these points where
> I'd
> > > like to see improvement. This is based on my experience, not a list of
> > > quick ideas.
> > >
> > >
> >
> > Thank you! Volker is probably best equipped to answer these.
> I've commented on all points on the talk page now I think.

​Thanks Volker,
I must have missed the info that the concepts of intervals have been
documented two weeks ago. Apologies.
The concept has potential to change the game and convince people to
"invest" in telemetry. However maybe a pilot phase with an app or two would
be more in place to see the results. Policies would then follow reality
even more.

It would be good to consider picking larger projects, e.g. part of KDE
Applications release or Plasma itself, and with maintainers able to discuss
during the Akademy. KEXI is just not in this group. Also, based on my
knowledge, statistical KEXI users would not even have access to the KDE
"kill switch" since Plasma is rarely used by them.

In particular there is a chance that if pilot apps get released with the
KUserFeedback telemetry, the challenge of handling access to the raw
anonymized data would get addressed, since we would know why there is the
interest in data and what is the purpose of collecting it. In the
post-Akademy thread Ingo Klöcker has once provided interesting general
observation, even it it refers to German law. Once the data "leaks" outside
of the telemetry team (say telemetry team within a single app project), to
people not even affiliated with the project, it is no longer possible to
expect it (the data) is used in a way compliant with the Policy, and
only for the needs of "legal" telemetry. KDE would still be responsible for
all the uses of the data. Coming year stronger law comes to Poland too.

So making it harder to download the data and increasing level of its
aggregation would make sense then to me. Long-term idea would also
be giving access to an analysis tool and the results instead of to the data
on which the tool operates.

And then in the meantime folks like the Promo team have potential to work
on proper messaging to improve the number users understanding and accepting
telemetry. My example follows here. On more "human" level: KEXI offering a
telemetry "for KDE" that is still seen as a "desktop" (regardless of a
reason) than "for KEXI Team" would be potentially a disadvantage for the
app's project itself. KDE contributors and fans understand the idea of an
organization. I've learned from my group that for everyone else "Help
improve Visual Studio" type of message tends convince more than more
questionable "Help Microsoft" ;)

regards, Jaroslaw Staniek

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