Re: IETF Trust response to the appeal by John C Klensin (July 18, 2009
Pete & Thomas:
This response is my own. I have not coordinated it with the Trustees.
Without taking positions on the specifics of the appeal or the
response, I have to say that my take on the response is that it
doesn't properly address the appeal and is inadequate.
I would have expected the specific issues raised in the appeal to
be responded to in a direct manner, with a clear response as to
whether the point is agreed to (or not) and what (if any) remedy
Instead, the response smacks of trying not to respond directly to
the appeal, but say "here is what we have been doing, let's please
just move on". IMO, that just doesn't cut it.
IMO, an appeal needs to be responded to with directness and with clarity.
I'm sorry that you read it that way.
I'm sorry, Russ, but I didn't "read it that way." It *is* that way.
It does not respond to the specific points and requests in the
appeal. Saying that you are sorry that Thomas (and I) "read it that
way" comes across as you saying "I'm sorry you were unable to read
the true meaning." It's, frankly, a non-apology and a bit condescending.
My reply was certainly not meant to be condescending. I was trying
to indicate the process that was used. Point-by-point responses were
formulated in a group discussion. When they were written done, the
same points were made over and over. This did not seem to me to be a
useful reply. So, I suggested restructuring the response with the
The first response that was drafted was a point-by-point reply as
you suggest. It was extremely repetitive, with the same points
being made over and over. I found the reply cumbersome at
best. It was my suggestion that we take the points that were made
over and over in that formulation of the response and structure it this way.
I see nothing in the appeal that would require repetition, which
indicates to me that perhaps the Trustees did not actually attempt
to answer the points of the appeal, or that the repetetive answers
all amounted to "no, we're not going to do that".
I can tell you that is not the case. In fact, the response indicates
that the Trustees recognize places where they were deviation from the
will of the community, and the actions that will be taken to
improve. They include no more proactive TLP changes as well as more
timely and complete minutes.
How about answers to these questions:
On point (i) of the appeal: Will the Trustees cease taking action
(except for "emergencies") until minutes are up to date? No answer
was specifically given in the reply. If the answer is "yes", the
Trustees will need a specific answer to (ii), since I have already
seen the posting with regard to the new TLP due to go into effect
September 12. Either the Trustees have hereby declared "an
emergency", or the answer to point (i) is, "no, we will continue
taking actions even though minutes are not up to date."
The appeal response indicates the actions that are being taken to get
the minutes up to date. There are several documents in the RFC
Editor queue that were blocked waiting for TLP 3.0 to be posted. I
strongly encouraged the Trustees to proceed with the posting of TLP
3.0 so that the real work product of the IETF was not further
delayed. This argument was persuasive to the other Trustees.
(For the record, the minutes wherein the decision to post the new
TLP was taken are also not posted.)
On point (ii) of the appeal: Have the Trustees found that an
emergency exists now (and if so, where is the explanation of that
emergency)? In the future, will the Trustees explain to the
community when such an emergency exists? I find neither answer in the reply.
As explained above, we did feel some urgency to unblock IETF stream
documents in the RFC Editor Queue. there are other non-IETF stream
documents that need other actions to unblock. However, direction
from each of those streams is needed before any action can be taken
by the Trustees. That is, the Trustees are not going to take
proactive actions here. The Trustees are waiting on the direction
from those streams.
On point (iii) of the appeal: Did the Trustees find that a proper
Last Call was done on the TLP? Did the Trustees find that changes
made to the proposed TLP were small enough as to not warrant a new
Last Call? Neither of these questions is answered in the reply.
This was not answered in the appeal response, but it was fully
answered on the list. With more than a week to go in the 30 day
comment period, the Trustees listed the changes that would not be
included based on the community comment, and the Trustees stated that
several proposed changes had received no negative comment and the
Trustees intended to implement those unless comments to the contrary
were received in the remainder of the comment period. Those changes
were implemented in TLP 3.0. The urgency for one of those changes
has already been covered above.
On point (iv) of the appeal: The reply answers this point, but
starts with the sentence "The Trustees were proactive." Please
answer the point in the appeal before patting yourselves on the back.
This was not a pat on the back. Quite the contrary. (Who is being
condescending now?) It was actually the thing the community told us
to stop doing. It was an admission that we were being proactive, but
in the future we will wait for community direction.
On point (v) of the appeal: The Trustees have not provided the
requested "summary and review of comments made on the June 23rd
version of that document, their decisions about each comment, and
the reasoning for those decisions" as far as I know. Have the
Trustees agreed to or rejected this element of the appeal?
The Trustees posted a fairly detailed process for the handling of
changes to the TLP going forward, and the appeal response points to
the process. This is a statement about the future.
The Trustees had already posted a list of changes that would not be
included in TLP 3.0 before this appeal was sent. Rationale was
provided, although it is clear to me that some community members
would have preferred more depth and traceability. The posted
procedure will provide that going forward. Significant proposed
changes were not made; it is clear to the Trustees that the community
did not want the Trustees to be proactive regarding the handling of
non-IETF streams. As stated in the appeal response, and several
times in this highly redundant reply, the Trustees will wait for
formal direction from the streams.
On point (vi) of the appeal: Have the Trustees agreed to "treat the
authorities granted to themselves by the "Administrative Procedures"
document as invalid and without force until that document is updated
to contain specific provisions for openness, transparency, and
accountability, including the provisions for review outlined above,
and the rough consensus approval of the community is obtained for
that revision"? I see no answer in the reply.
The appeal response says that "the Trustees are abiding by the
provisions of BCP 101." This is the crux of the question being
asked. BCP 101 was written to cover the IAOC before the IETF Trust
was formed. Here, the Trustees accept BCP 101, including the part
about appeals, as covering actions by the IAOC an the IETF Trust.
On point (vii) of the appeal: The reply answers this point in the
paragraph which starts, "Second...".
Until the Trustees answer these questions directly, I (like Thomas)
do not find the appeal reply adequate.
I hope this clarifies the situation and alleviates your concerns.
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