Re: Uppercase question for RFC2119 words

"Scott O. Bradner" <sob@sobco.com> Mon, 28 March 2016 14:14 UTC

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Subject: Re: Uppercase question for RFC2119 words
From: "Scott O. Bradner" <sob@sobco.com>
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Date: Mon, 28 Mar 2016 10:13:09 -0400
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To: Barry Leiba <barryleiba@computer.org>
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one minor tweak

> On Mar 28, 2016, at 10:09 AM, Barry Leiba <barryleiba@computer.org> wrote:
> 
>> The wishy washy descriptive rather than proscriptive language in the abstract was because I,
>> the IESG and the community were not of one mind to say that the use of such capitalized
>> terms should be mandatory - quite a few people felt that the english language was at
>> least good enough to convey  the writer’s intent without having to aggrandize specific words.
>> Thus the abstract basically was saying: if you want to use capitalized words here is a standard
>> way to say what they mean
> 
> Ah.  Then perhaps the clarification needs to go a little further and
> make this clear:
> - We're defining specific terms that specifications can use.
> - These terms are always capitalized when these definitions are used.

these definitions are only meaningful if the words are capitalized

> - You don't have to use them.  If you do, they're capitalized and
> their meanings are as specified here.
> - There are similar-looking English words that are not capitalized,
> and they have their normal English meanings; this document has nothing
> to do with them.
> 
> ...and I'd like to add one more, because so many people think that
> text isn't normative unless it has 2119 key words in all caps in it:
> 
> - Normative text doesn't require the use of these key words.  They're
> used for clarity and consistency when you want that, but lots of
> normative text doesn't need to use them, and doesn't use them.
> 
> Barry