As the Python programming language continues to grow in popularity, so too does the accumulation of issues and pull requests (“PRs”) on the CPython GitHub repository. At time of writing (morning of 7th May, 2022), the total stands at 7,027 open issues, and 1,471 pull requests. At the 2022 Python Language Summit, CPython Core Developer Irit Katriel gave a talk on possible ways forward for dealing with the backlog.
Historically, there has been reluctance among CPython’s team of core developers to close issues or PRs that may be of dubious worth. BPO-539907 was presented to the audience as an issue that had remained open on the issue tracker for over 20 years. The example is an extreme one, but represents a pattern that anybody who has scrolled through the CPython issue tracker will surely have seen before:
Anyone with experience in triaging issue trackers in open source will know that it is not always easy to close an issue. People on the internet do not always take kindly to being told that something they believe to be a bug is, in fact, intended behaviour.