Re: [Gendispatch] I-D Action: draft-nottingham-where-does-that-come-from-00.txt

Christian Huitema <> Mon, 15 March 2021 05:00 UTC

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From: Christian Huitema <>
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Date: Sun, 14 Mar 2021 21:23:18 -0700
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Subject: Re: [Gendispatch] I-D Action: draft-nottingham-where-does-that-come-from-00.txt
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I am not sure that I agree with Mark. Or at least not entirely. Yes, the 
way we publish documents is confusing. But I am not sure that Mark's 
proposal is the best we can do.

Mark proposes to distinguish the various categories of RFC based on the 
stream in which they were published. I think that this classification 
overlaps and partially conflicts with the nature of the RFC, i.e. the 
label as standard, BCP, informational and experimental. I think it is 
important to distinguish standards and BCP documents from the rest, and 
that Mark's suggestion of an IETF branding is certainly a good idea. But 
it is not obvious that informational documents and independent stream 
documents should have different statuses, or even different branding. 
Similarly, it is not obvious that IRTF documents shall have different 
branding from informational or experimental documents from the IETF. It 
also seems that many IAB documents overlap with the BCP and 
informational categories, and that branding IAB and IETF documents 
differently may or may not be a good idea.

I am particularly sensitive to the attempt to differentiate branding of 
informational documents coming through the IETF and through the 
independent stream. One important function of the independent stream is 
to provide "checks and balances" to the IETF, and ensure that minority 
opinions are not silenced. A strong branding differentiation would 
weaken this function of checks and balances, by clearly marking the 
minority opinions as second class citizens.

-- Christian Huitema

On 3/13/2021 12:17 AM, Eliot Lear wrote:
> This having been said, I agree with Mark that this is a problem, that branding can help, and that the matter should get addressed.  Where it gets addressed is a matter of timing.  I really do hope that we can dispatch this work to the new WG-like structure that is being contemplated in the program.
> Eliot
>> On 13 Mar 2021, at 02:22, Brian E Carpenter <> wrote:
>> On 13-Mar-21 14:14, Salz, Rich wrote:
>>> It’s silly to try and have one “official” place for RFC’s, and deprecate all other locations.  Even if it could be done, and I’d like to know why, we want these docs to be widely and freely available.
>> Yes, in fact I agree, see my reply to Keith.
>>    Brian
>> --
>> Gendispatch mailing list