Re: DMARC from the perspective of the listadmin of a bunch of SMALL community lists

Dave Crocker <> Sat, 12 April 2014 20:32 UTC

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Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2014 13:30:25 -0700
From: Dave Crocker <>
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To: Miles Fidelman <>
Subject: Re: DMARC from the perspective of the listadmin of a bunch of SMALL community lists
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On 4/12/2014 12:56 PM, Miles Fidelman wrote:
> - defines the "DMARC Base Specification" with a link to
> - an IETF
> document

While the Internet-Draft mechanism is operated by the IETF, it is an 
open mechanism and issuance through it carries no automatic status, 
particularly with respect to the IETF.

The DMARC specification is not 'an IETF document'.  The current plan is 
to publish it as an RFC, through the 'Independent' stream, which also is 
/not/ an IETF activity.

> - the referenced document is an informational  Internet draft, that

Drafts do not have status.  So the qualifier 'informational' here is not 

> In essence, DMARC is being represented as a mature, standards-track IETF
> specification - with the implication that it's been widely vetted, and
> is marching through the traditional experimental -> optional ->
> recommended -> mandatory steps that IETF standards go through.
> In reality:
> - DMARC was developed by a tiny number of people, all of whom work for
> very large ISPs

Well, a few of us who participated don't...

> - as far as I can tell, all input from the broader community - notably
> mailing list developers and operators was roundly ignored or dismissed
> (the transcript is really clear on this)

What transcript?  I'm not aware of its being 'ignored or dismissed'.

> - while DMARC is at least partially tested, deploying and honoring
> "p=reject" messages is brand new, and has wreaked tremendous damage
> across the net

It's not new at all, though of course Yahoo's use is distinctive.

> - as far as I can tell, those who are behind DMARC are taking the
> position "it's not our problem" (see discussions on
> and - and there is nary a Yahoo
> representative to be seen anywhere

I've no idea what specifics you are referring to.

> The situation strikes me as incredibly perverse and broken - the more so
> that the perpetrators are presenting this as blessed by the IETF
> standards process.

I haven't seen anyone present such a claim of blessing.  Please point to 
the specifics.

I fear you are confusing the difference between a desire for standards 
status with a claim of its having been granted.


Dave Crocker
Brandenburg InternetWorking