What if tasks would keep being as open as they are, but as soon as they are assigned to a sprint project they would be partially protected? Only the assigned and the members of an invitation-only group (i.e. "Sprinters") would be able to perform these actions:
- Edit Assigned
- Edit Priority
Ideally, workboards of sprints and releases would be also editable only by this group.
This means that tasks in backlogs could be highly editable by anybody, but as soon as these tasks would enter a sprint or a release, they would obtain a certain level of protection. Title, CC, Projects, Security, and Descriptions would be still editable at all times.
Let's discuss about the principle first, then we can look at the implementation.
Project managers, product owners and profiles alike might be concerned about the possibility for just anybody to land in their projects and start changing priorities and assigned fields against their will, knowing or not what they are doing, in good faith or as pure vandalism. After some conversations at the Wikimedia Foundation offices I can assess that such concern exists.
Part of this comes from the change from a fully controlled environment in Trello or Mingle to Phabricator's openness. Part of this comes from prioritization wars that we have seen in Bugzilla, with a risk of becoming more explosive since the scope now is not limited to bugs. And well, already in the pre-launch period we are seeing that it is easy that different people have different background and expectations when it comes to play with task fields and boards.