One of your comments seems to apply to the effectiveness
of having an early submission deadline. What is the point of
monkeying around with early submission deadlines when they are
not very effective anyway?
There seems to be two elements to your argument: that the
rule does not seem to apply in every case and that exceptions
seem to favor inappropriate submissions while enforcement tends
to impede submission of "legitimate late postings".
I have to admit that I agree with the sentiment that they
are not very effective - at least not always. Sometimes a WG
chair schedules time to talk about an ID that doesn't exist at
the time of the schedule announcement and - sometimes - still
has not been submitted by the time of the meeting. Being used
to somewhat firmer guidelines, that sort of thing catches me
by surprise, unless - like some people - I have grown inured
to this sort of exception within a specific WG.
So, one question is whether or not it is appropriate to
allow this practice to continue. That question needs to be
answered - one way or the other - before we can really address
your concern about playing around with submission deadlines.
However, the bit about exceptions favoring innappropriate
late submissions and enforcement impeding legitimate submissions
depends on how we define "appropriate" and "legitimate". IMHO,
I think the common - usage-based - definition is that WG chairs
get to arbitrate the meaning of these terms as it applies to ID
submissions for their own WG, especially when submissions are
late. If _we_ don't like the way that a specific WG chair does
this, then we can individually complain about it and - if enough
complaints are heard - something will most likely be done about
it. If _we_ don't like the practice in general, then we can
complain about it in this venue.
But - as long as the usage definition is that it is up to
the WG chair to define what is an "appropriate" or "legitimate"
ID submissions - then (by that definition) whatever the chair
allows to be discussed is both appropriate and legitimate. If
we - as individuals - disagree, then it is up to us to say so
during the highly traditional "agenda bashing" period at each
On the other hand, if someone wants to reduce the WG
chair's role in arbitrating the legitimacy of an ID submission,
then it is up to them to make sure that their submission is in
compliance with formal submission deadlines, format, etc. - so
that no "exception" is required.
How wide-spread the practice of ignoring the deadlines is
in practice and how much the IETF as a whole may have come to
accept that this is something that is occasionally done (by any
definition of occasionally we care to use), is only relevant if
you would argue that there should be no deadlines.
This, then, is an implication of your argument and - for
the reasons Harald, and others, stated - this is unacceptable.
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