Should I contribute to this discussion?

TitleShould I contribute to this discussion?
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsIbrahim, WM, Bettenburg, N, Shihab, E, Adams, B, Hassan, AE
Secondary Title2010 7th IEEE Working Conference on Mining Software Repositories (MSR 2010)
Pagination181 - 190
Place PublishedCape Town
ISBN Number978-1-4244-6802-7
Keywordsapache, contributions, developers, email, email archives, mailing lists, postgresql, python

Development mailing lists play a central role in facilitating communication in open source projects. Since these lists frequently host design and project discussions, knowledgeable contribution to these discussion threads is essential to avoid mis-communication that might slow-down the progress of a project. However, given the sheer volume of emails on these lists, it is easy to miss important discussions. To find out how developers are able to deal with mailing list discussions, we study the main factors that encourage developers to contribute to the development mailing lists. We develop personalized models to automatically identify discussion threads that a developer would contribute to based on his previous contribution behavior. Case studies on development mailing lists of three open source projects (Apache, PostgreSQL and Python) show that the average accuracy of our models is 89-85% and that the models vary significantly between different developers.

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