[Top] [All Lists]

Re: IESG approval status of rfc2821bis

2008-06-06 10:18:39

I, for one, recommend appeal, but I want to explain why by way of a particular part of JL's response:

On 6/6/08 at 5:06 AM -0400, John Leslie wrote:

I can't speak for anyone who'd consider an appeal; but it looks to be to be a waste of time. It can't possibly be faster; it will _really_ annoy folks who would be better friends than enemies; and it's hard to imagine any outcome close to what you want.

So, there are tactics and there are strategies. If the result we are looking for is fast publication, appeal is a stupid idea. But that's not what's behind the idea of an appeal. It is so we can stop repeatedly going through this exercise. The IESG has several mechanisms for recommend change to a document, but DISCUSS seems to be the "club of choice". And DISCUSS has some implications, as the DISCUSS Criteria ION says:

"The DISCUSS identifies one or more issues that must be discussed in relation to the document before the document can become an RFC. As such, 'DISCUSS' is a blocking position; the document cannot proceed until any issues are resolved to the satisfaction of the Area Director who issued the DISCUSS."

DISCUSS is for show-stoppers that (a) cannot be addressed by a non-blocking comment and (b) are so controversial that they cannot be dealt with by an RFC Editor note at publication time. Consistently, the IESG seems to choose DISCUSS over these two other choices, and DISCUSS serves to seriously delay documents, where the others allow it to continue through the process. The present document is an example of (a): Instead of sending a comment back to the author saying, "The IESG believes that the examples use the 2606 recommendations" and let the document progress while the author works that out (or decides not to), the IESG felt that publication of this document as-is would be so harmful that it deserves to be stopped in its tracks. That's just nonsense.

I had a recent example of (b) with 2822upd: There was a missing set of parens in the ABNF which clearly made the syntax ambiguous, but also where the intent was exceedingly obvious. Instead of writing up an RFC Editor note which simply added the parens, and/or dropping the author an e-mail saying, "Hey, you need to fix this!", the AD in question instead put a DISCUSS on the document. There was no "DISCUSSion" needed in this case. I ended up IMing the AD, told the AD that this was an inappropriate use of DISCUSS, and the DISCUSS was cleared within hours.

DISCUSS should only be used if the document has a showstopper that needs discussion. The IESG needs to get their act together on that. Apparently "really annoying" them (as JL puts it) and threatening appeals is the only way to get them to fix their procedures.

Pete Resnick <>
Qualcomm Incorporated - Direct phone: (858)651-4478, Fax: (858)651-1102