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Telepathy specification

telepathy-spec is the canonical description of the Telepathy D-Bus API,
on which all other Telepathy projects are based.

Telepathy is a D-Bus framework for unifying real time communication,
including instant messaging, voice calls and video calls. It abstracts
differences between protocols to provide a unified interface for


Building HTML documentation for telepathy-spec requires:
  GNU make <>
  libxslt, xsltproc <>
  Python <>
  Docutils (rst2html tool) <>

Bugs, feature requests and to-do list

Report all errata, feature requests and "to-do" items here:

API stability policy

We use an "odd/even" versioning scheme where the minor version (the y in
x.y.z) determines stability - stable branches have y even, development
branches have y odd.

The following interfaces can change at any time, so please do not include them
in libraries:

* interfaces whose names end with .DRAFT or .FUTURE
* interfaces with the tp:causes-havoc attribute

Otherwise, we will not make the following changes in a stable branch, and we
avoid them where possible even in development branches:

* Removing or renaming methods, signals or properties
* Changing the D-Bus type signature of a method or signal's arguments
* Changing the D-Bus type signature or access (can be read/can be written)
  of a property
* Removing or renaming types (tp:struct etc.)
* Changing the D-Bus type signature of a type (tp:struct etc.)

We do *not* consider the following changes to be an API break, and reserve the
right to make them at any time. Telepathy libraries/bindings should be done in
a way that will not break if we do these:

* Adding new methods or properties
* Adding new signals, if that does not make old connection managers (that will
  never emit those signals) fail to comply with the spec
* Changing the name of a method or signal argument, or giving it a name if
  it did not previously have one
* Adding new types (tp:enum, tp:struct etc.)
* Adding new members to the end of a tp:enum or tp:flags
* Changing the tp:type of a property or argument, or adding a tp:type if it
  did not already have one (as long as the D-Bus signature remains the same)
* Documenting methods to possibly raise new exceptions (any method can raise
  any exception, and client code should always cope)

If any changes not mentioned here would break your library's API and you want
us to avoid them, please ask for clarification on the mailing list.

Contact info

This specification is maintained by the Telepathy project:

Telepathy development is supported by Collabora Ltd.


The current development version of telepathy-spec is available from the
'master' branch in the git repository:
  <git+ssh://> (for committers)
  <> (gitweb)

Stable branches are available from branches with names like
'telepathy-spec-0.16' in the same repository.

Proposed patches awaiting review can usually be found in Merge Monkey:
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