On Tue, Mar 25, 2008 at 09:40:38AM -0500, Spencer Dawkins wrote:
As Ted said, "in theory, all decisions are supposed to be confirmed on the
mailing list", but I haven't seen anyone point out the reason why - because
we also think it's important to have very few barriers to participation in
the IETF, so we don't require attendance at any face-to-face meeting, ever.
So I'm not sure how we verify identities when anyone we question can just
post from an e-mail account at an ISP in Tierra del Fuego, and say "the next
time you're in the tip of South America, come by and verify my identity".
Well, usually someone who says, "I think you should do <foo>", follows
it up with, "because of <bar>, and while the alternate choice has
upside <quux>, I believe the engineering tradeoff is such that <bar>
is far more important than <quux>". So usually it doesn't matter
whether someone is posting from Sunnyvale or McMurdo Station. So
often, in practice, it doesn't matter.
So I think I would certainly grant your argument that most of the time
it doesn't matter, which is probably why we haven't spent a lot of
time trying to come up with detailed procedures for how to deal with
the situation. I certainly think an ad hoc approach such as what the
LTRU wg co-chairs chose, with consultation with their AD, was the
right way to go, and if "LB", whoever he is, wants to challenge their
procedure, let him go up the appeal chain.
The IETF is still a meritocracy, not a democracy. Bad ideas are still bad
ideas, even if lots of people have them. Binary numbering still uses two
values (zero and one), no matter how many drafts say something else.
Working group chairs have two responsibilities - to be fair, and to make
progress. When these responsibilities collide, it's not going to be pretty,
but Russ's point - we actually do know how to resolve conflicts in the
IETF - is critical, because the alternative is that work just stops.
Sometimes we just need to make a decision and move on. If you were right,
but couldn't convince the WG chair(s), AD, IESG or IAB that you were right,
and couldn't convince enough people to sign a recall petition - well, next
time, do a better job of convincing convincing people.
No argument here. In fact, I'd argue that the justification *for* PR
actions is to make progress, when someone who doesn't understand that
they've lost a particular battle by not being a part of the rough
consensus can't let ago, and move on....
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