Re: [apps-discuss] WGLC on draft-ietf-appsawg-xdash-02.txt

"t.petch" <> Wed, 25 January 2012 10:23 UTC

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To: "Paul Hoffman" <>, "Alexey Melnikov" <>
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Subject: Re: [apps-discuss] WGLC on draft-ietf-appsawg-xdash-02.txt
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----- Original Message -----
From: "Paul Hoffman" <>
To: "Alexey Melnikov" <>
Cc: <>
Sent: Wednesday, January 25, 2012 12:03 AM

> On Jan 24, 2012, at 12:54 PM, Alexey Melnikov wrote:
> > On 09/12/2011 17:19, Alexey Melnikov wrote:
> > However there weren't many comments on the document, so it is either perfect
or people don't care.
> That's somewhat disingenuous. Some of us care very much but didn't think that
commenting on the document would have any effect on the outcome.

Yes, my thoughts exactly.  The document reads like an edict from a socialist
state, 'in future, you will ...[insert nonsense appropriate to your culture]'
and taking on socialist states is a losing game for the individual.

But you ask.  The body of the document is dogmatic, the support for the bald
statement lies in Appendix B (normative?) and is almost as weak.  The e-mail
that came to me contained 15 distinct X- headers; what are the creators of those
meant to do now?  And what in future when they wish to develop or experiment
with a new idea, perhaps one that will be very successful but only within a
walled garden?

The real failure lies with SMTP, MIME etc, or those who specified it, who failed
to see the need for migration (all too common a point of view in the IETF).
Having a private namespace in which to develop and experiment without harming
the Internet is an excellent idea and crops up in many forms, of which this I-D
only addresses the 'X-' format.  When such work is successful, and the desire is
there to move it to the Internet, then a migration strategy is needed and it is
this that the MIMiEs etc failed to plan for.  This failure does not invalidate
the case for a private portion of the namespace.

And, to be expected really, this I-D fails to consider migration; what is going
to happen now to those 15 X- headers and all the others that are in other
e-mails?  Where is your migration plan?

And what about all the other private portions of namespaces that are designated
with something other than X-?  Will you produce an edict prohibiting them as

Tom Petch

> My comments: the document makes grandiose, over-arching suggestions that
indicate a one-size-fits-all view of the standards process. I would probably do
the same if I were co-author of this document, with half of my suggestions being
the same as what is the draft and half being the opposite.
> A different way to do the document would be a single paragraph: "People have
thought about this topic for over a decade, probably much harder than you are
thinking about this now. They often disagreed with each other, indicating that
you are not thinking hard enough about your current choices. Whatever you choose
to do with respect to not-yet-defined parameters, you will likely regret the
choice if your protocol is at all popular." Such a concise document is much
easier to read and much less likely to be noticed than the current one.
> --Paul Hoffman
> _______________________________________________
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