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I seem to recall I've seen a more than one discussion about breaking out certain less than maintained modules from Core. They would presumably be moved to contrib instead. Currently I can't find any information on this topic.

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There is an issue report for that ([Meta] Make core maintainable), but nothing has been decided yet. As you can see, there are different opinions about what to remove, and what to keep.
catch, the latest maintainer added to Drupal 8, expressed his opinion on that; the same did Dries, chx, Crell, and eaton (just to cite some of them). There is an agreement about some of the modules to remove, but there isn't a complete agreement.

That issue report is not marked as postponed, and a new issue report has been opened (Establish heuristics for core feature evaluation).

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  • Thanks, this was exactly what I was looking for. Seeing the issue title, I understand why my searches failed to yield anything relevant.
    – Letharion
    Apr 17 '12 at 12:56

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