Re: [Gendispatch] Diversity and Inclusiveness in the IETF

Keith Moore <moore@network-heretics.com> Thu, 25 February 2021 21:06 UTC

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From: Keith Moore <moore@network-heretics.com>
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Date: Thu, 25 Feb 2021 16:06:05 -0500
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Subject: Re: [Gendispatch] Diversity and Inclusiveness in the IETF
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On 2/25/21 12:58 PM, STARK, BARBARA H wrote:

> The main problem that I, personally, see driving a need for the TERM WG is that many companies (mostly from one region) have told their employees not to use certain terms in any document or code they are associated with. Given the momentum of this movement and speed at which it is spreading to many of the companies employing IETF participants, if IETF does not address the problem ASAP, this could make it difficult for employees of these companies to actively participate. This will primarily impact a specific region/country and people employed by large companies in that region and would be independent of the race, culture, or gender of the participants.

I'm not following this.   Are you saying that IETF will be expected to 
bring its notion of acceptable vocabulary in line with those of some 
large companies that are mostly from one region so that those companies' 
employees are not at risk of violating their employers' policies if they 
participate in IETF?   Or are you saying that document authors/editors 
who work for such companies will be constrained by IETF to violate their 
employers' policies if IETF doesn't adopt its own policy (which might be 
different from the policies of those companies)?

Given that we're all supposed to be participating in IETF as 
individuals, do those companies also constrain what their employees can 
write on their own time?

I guess I don't see a TERM document forcing anyone to use any particular 
terminology (at least, I hope it doesn't) so much as saying "try to 
avoid these specific terms unless there's a good reason to do so".   And 
that seems Mostly Harmless to me and may create some good will.   But 
if  IETF has to align its rules with those of Big Companies Mostly From 
One Region, I consider that extremely problematic.

Keith