Opened 12 years ago

Closed 11 years ago

#55 closed defect (wontfix)

RFC 2850/BCP 101 Chartered Responsibility

Reported by: john+rfc@… Owned by: jmh@…
Priority: blocker Milestone: milestone1
Component: draft-iab-rfc-editor-model-v2 Version: 1.0
Severity: In WG Last Call Keywords:


(A.2) There is language in the document that can be interpreted
in rather different ways by people (who are acting in good
faith) within the community. A statement like "The IAB and
IAOC maintain their chartered responsibility as defined in
[RFC2850] and [RFC4071]", while certainly true, doesn't
actually provide much information because, as we have seen in
other discussions, the community contains widely different
opinions about how far those responsibilities, and the
authority that is presumed to go with them, extend.

As one particular example to which I'm personally sensitive,
many of us took the discussions leading up to the IASA as
requiring that the IAOC confine itself narrowly to
administrative and financial issues and that it _never_ make
policy. At most, it might formulate policy proposals for
review and possible approval by the broader community, but it
was questionable whether it --as compared to, e.g., the IESG--
should even set itself up as a determiner of consensus. When
one reads RFC 4071 through the lens of that history, the
"chartered responsibility" (and accompanying authority) of the
IAOC is extremely limited. By contrast, in the last half-dozen
years, a number of people have taken the quite reasonable
position that the IAOC's responsibility for the financial and
administrative welfare of the extended IETF community gives it
sweeping authority, via the "power of the purse", to create and
impose policies and determine styles of doing things. Neither
of those positions are inherently wrong. If they need to be
resolved, this document is not the right place to do it. But,
while using a statement like the one quoted above may make both
those who think the IAB is ultimately in charge of the RFC
Editor and those who think the IAOC must control anything that
costs money (including the RFC Editor Function) happy because
they read it as they prefer, it sets up a future opportunity
for disputes and may scare off potential RSE candidates who
don't want to get into a "too many masters and a dispute
between them about boundaries" situation.

The difficulty with that particular "maintain their chartered
responsibility" statement could be reduced by adding a sentence
to the effect that this document provides authoritative
interpretations of those responsibilities (i.e., that neither
interpretations of the IETF Charter nor of the IASA Structure
documents take precedence over anything this document actually
does specify), but the general problem remains... and you need
to specify whatever is important, not just assume that the
statement provides significant information because it does not.

Change History (3)

comment:1 Changed 11 years ago by Bernard_Aboba@…

  • Owner set to jmh@…

comment:2 Changed 11 years ago by jmh@…

As per the face-to-face and email discussions, no change is being made for this issue.

comment:3 Changed 11 years ago by jmh@…

  • Resolution set to wontfix
  • Status changed from new to closed
Note: See TracTickets for help on using tickets.