From: ietf-bounces(_at_)ietf(_dot_)org [ietf-bounces(_at_)ietf(_dot_)org] On
Behalf Of Andrew Sullivan [ajs(_at_)shinkuro(_dot_)com]
I find it slightly astonishing that the RFC Editor's instuctions on
URLs don't require a visited-on parameter. Just about every academic
style guide requires such a note for the obvious reason that the
target of a URL can change.
I see this in the 22 Sep 2009 draft of the instructions:
The use of URLs in references in RFCs is generally discouraged,
because URLs are often not stable. On the other hand, there are
cases where a URL is demonstrably the most stable reference
available for some reference.
URLs and DNS names in RFCs
The use of URLs in RFCs is discouraged, because many URLs are not
stable references. Exceptions may be made for normative
references in those cases where the URL is demonstrably the most
stable reference available. References to long-lived files on
ietf.org and rfc-editor.org are generally acceptable.
Given that, I would expect that a URL that is "demonstrably the most stable
reference available" would suggest that the contents of the URL at any date
near the publication date of the RFC "should" yield the same contents. If an
RFC references a URL that is unstable enough for us to notice and complain
about it, the URL should not have been used in the first place.
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