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Update lazyConsensus.md
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title: Lazy Consensus
---

The concept of "Lazy Consensus" is very important in our project. Lazy
Consensus means that when you are convinced that you know what the community
would like to see happen you can simply assume that you already have consensus
and get on with the work. You don't have to insist people discuss and/or
The concept of "lazy consensus" is very important in your project. Lazy
consensus means that when you are convinced that you know what the community
would like to see happen, you can assume that you have consensus in favor of the proposed work and
and get on with it. You don't have to insist people discuss and/or
approve your plan, and you certainly don't need to call a vote to get approval.
You just assume you have the communities support unless someone says otherwise.
You just assume you have the community's support unless someone says otherwise.

We have a time machine (Subversion), this means that as long as you commit
(or submit patches) early and often the community has plenty of opportunity
to indicate disapproval. If you believe the community will support your action
We have a time machine (Subversion or Git). As long as you commit
(or submit patches) early and often, the community has plenty of opportunity
to indicate disapproval or point out issues. If you believe the community will support your action
you can operate on lazy consensus as long as you are prepared to roll back
any work should a valid objection is raised.
any work should someone raise a valid objection.

## Avoiding Unnecessary Discussion
## Avoiding unnecessary discussion

The key thing about lazy consensus is that it's easier for people to agree,
by doing nothing, than it is to object, which requires an
alternative to be proposed. This has two effects, firstly people are less
likely to object for the sake of it and secondly it cuts down on the amount
of unnecessary mail traffic and discussion.
by doing nothing, than it is to object, which requires them to propose an alternative. This has two effects: first, people are less
likely to object for the sake of objecting and, second, it cuts down on the amount
of unnecessary email traffic and discussion.

Lazy consensus means we can avoid waiting for a community based decision
before proceeding. However, it does require everyone who cares for the health
Lazy consensus lets us avoid having to wait for a community-based decision
before proceeding. However, it does require everyone who cares about the health
of the project to watch what is happening, as it is happening. Objecting too
far down the road will cause upset, but objecting (or asking for clarification
far down the road will cause upset, while objecting (or asking for clarification
of intent) early is likely to be greeted with relief that someone is watching
and cares.

## Stating Lazy Consensus
## Stating lazy consensus

Sometimes a member of the community will believe a specific action is the correct
one for the project but are not sure that there will be consensus. In these
circumstances they may not wish to proceed with the work without giving the
community an opportunity to feedback. In these circumstances they can make the
proposal and state Lazy Consensus is in operation.
one for the project but is not sure that there will be consensus. They may not wish to proceed with the work without giving the
community an opportunity to provide feedback. In these circumstances they can make the
proposal and state that lazy consensus is in operation, like this:

What this means is that they make a proposal and state that they will start
implementing it in 72 hours unless someone objects. 72 hours is chosen because
it accounts for different timezones and non-apache commitments.
- In an email to `dev@PROJECT`, they state their proposal, with sufficient supporting material for someone familiar with the project to understand it.
- In the email they indicate that they will start
implementing the proposal in 72 hours unless someone objects. The time period takes into account that project members are a) busy and b) in time zones around the world.

In this approach the original proposal is not insisting that there is a discussion
around their proposal, nor are they requesting that the community explicitly
supports their actions. However, this differs from assuming lazy consensus
since it allows space and time to [express support or objections][1] and corrections to
the proposal before work begins.
In this approach the the proposer does not insist that the developer community discuss or explicitly support the proposal. However, it allows space and time to [express support or objections][1] or propose corrections to the proposal before work begins.

## Silence is consent

People may choose to indicate their support for the actions taken with a +1
People may choose to indicate their support for the proposal with a +1
mail - quick and easy to read and reassuring for the implementer. However,
remember, in a lazy consensus world silence is the equivalent to support. This
can take some time to get used to.
remember, in a lazy consensus world silence is equivalent to support.

[1]: /committers/consensusBuilding.html
[1]: /committers/consensusBuilding.html

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