Re: [108attendees] Successful IETF 108

Keith Moore <moore@network-heretics.com> Tue, 04 August 2020 16:46 UTC

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To: Ted Lemon <mellon@fugue.com>
Cc: "Joel M. Halpern" <jmh@joelhalpern.com>, 108attendees@ietf.org
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From: Keith Moore <moore@network-heretics.com>
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Date: Tue, 4 Aug 2020 12:46:18 -0400
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Subject: Re: [108attendees] Successful IETF 108
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On 8/4/20 12:36 PM, Ted Lemon wrote:

> Also, some IETF participants no doubt would consider any tool that 
> prevents filibustering to be unsuitable.

"filibustering" is an interesting word.  Historically in the US Senate 
the filibuster was used to make sure that any bills passed by the US 
Congress were a compromise between competing interests, rather than an 
exercise of tyranny of the majority.   This was a feature rather than a 
bug.   For that reason, I do not support efforts to eliminate the 
filibuster in the Senate.

The problem in the current US Congress is that US politics has become so 
polarized that such compromises that are needed to make sure that laws 
serve a broad spectrum of interests have often become impossible.

I note that the US Senate has also long had rules to limit debate so 
that a filibuster was not a denial-of-service attack on the entire Senate.

Anyway, I suspect by "filibustering" you mean something approximating 
"denial of service attack".   I agree that DoS attacks aren't 
appropriate.   Let someone have their say for some reasonable amount of 
time.   Cut them off when that time has been exceeded and/or when they 
start repeating themselves.   They can always present their argument to 
the mailing list, write an Internet-Draft that presents an alternative 
view, bring up issues at WGLC and IETF LC, or even appeal.

But I also want to point out that in a group that purports to make 
decisions by consensus, shouting down a lone alternative voice is 
another form of DoS attack.   And some people, I suspect, want to be 
able to keep doing that.

Keith