Re: WG Review: Effective Terminology in IETF Documents (term)

Michael StJohns <> Mon, 05 April 2021 23:31 UTC

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Subject: Re: WG Review: Effective Terminology in IETF Documents (term)
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From: Michael StJohns <>
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Date: Mon, 5 Apr 2021 19:31:11 -0400
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On 4/5/2021 7:11 PM, Michael StJohns wrote:
> For some reason I can't find the original announcement, so I'll just 
> do this bare.
> Given the general language of RFC 2418, my best take is that _*it's 
> inappropriate for the IETF to charter a working group on this 
> topic*_.   It's not a technical topic, and it does not fit the general 
> WG model.
> To my best recollection (which means I may have missed one), we've 
> never chartered a WG solely for the purpose of writing documents that 
> purport to modify the way the IETF does business.
*sigh* Ignore the above. Joel H reminded me of Poised, Poisson of the 
previous century and Newtrk of the previous decade.   I'm sure there are 

> Such documents have usually come either as IESG / IAB 
> authored/sponsored BCPs.  Indeed, BCP 95 was just such a document.   
> WGs have been (should be?) for technical activities related to 
> specifying how the Internet works.
> <minirant>Technical WGs at least have the possibility of achieving 
> consensus based on the analysis of tradeoffs of hard facts and good 
> analysis.  A "WG" such as TERM may fail of achieving even WG 
> consensus, let alone community consensus (especially given the current 
> ongoing discussions) and there will be no fall back to fact analysis 
> possible.   I can't see any way an appeal could be managed in those 
> circumstances and I strongly suggest we do not try to place this in 
> the WG model.</minirant>
> Since the proposed charter for Term will effect more than just the 
> standards process (e.g. it potentially effects all of the current and 
> future RFC streams), it would appear this should be handled either as 
> an IAB activity (either authored, or referred to a workshop), or 
> deferred until the RFCED group completes its work and can have this 
> assigned as a work item.
> My first preference is to do this as an IAB Workshop report with no 
> BCP tag and with as dispassionate an analysis and output language as 
> possible.  E.g. explanatory language vs directive.
> Mike