Re: The Next Generation

Warren Kumari <> Wed, 11 September 2019 20:10 UTC

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From: Warren Kumari <>
Date: Wed, 11 Sep 2019 16:10:04 -0400
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Re: The Next Generation
To: Nico Williams <>
Cc: S Moonesamy <>, IETF Discuss <>
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On Wed, Sep 11, 2019 at 3:48 PM Nico Williams <> wrote:
> On Wed, Sep 11, 2019 at 11:22:39AM -0700, S Moonesamy wrote:
> > Hi Rob,
> > At 05:35 PM 03-09-2019, Rob Sayre wrote:
> > > I noticed there were some parts of the last IETF meeting (105) that were
> > > sparsely attended. And, the attendees of those meetings tended to be
> > > [removed]. There's nothing wrong with that: no one chooses their
> > > [removed].
> > >
> > > Although there is value in experience, maybe the IETF should work to
> > > hand off some duties to more diverse younger people.
> > >
> > > As a start, I propose identifying some current groups that could be
> > > better-handled by
> >
> > My reading of the relevant rules is that the message which I am sending is
> > off-topic for this mailing list.  For what it is worth, one of the points in
> > your message (re. newcomers) was discussed [1] on this mailing list about a
> > decade ago.
> Did the SAAs call out Sayre's post as off-topic??  I didn't notice.  But
> you know, there's so much noise on this list lately...  If they said
> nothing even privately, then frankly that would be another stain on
> their recent performance.  We can't quite know if they objected
> privately, of course, so it's hard to say.
> > There has been various proposals over the years about newcomers.  Those
> > proposals do not set a metric for success.  Some time ago, I chose a number
> > as part of an effort to get new people interested in working for free.  I
> > reached half that number at the end of that endeavor.  Based on that, I
> > would describe the venture as a failure.
> >
> > The person selecting people for the various roles is the Area Director.  It
> > is his/her responsibility to assess whether the Area is attracting new
> > people and whether there aren't any obstacles which prevent or discourage
> > those new people from staying around.
> Not quite so.  We're a VOLUNTEER organization.  That means we're
> self-selected.  ADs don't get to select participants.  ADs may get to
> select or help select chairs for WGs, but that's about it.
> Now, some volunteers are asked by their employers to work on IETF
> matters, some by their customers, and others do it for other reasons.
> In principle the IETF could ask employers to be more, er, discriminating
> as to who they assign to work at the IETF.  I wonder what the EEOC in
> the U.S. would think of that, were the IETF to do such a thing.  I can
> imagine lawsuits.  So before the IETF does any such thing, I'd recommend
> talking to lawyers.  In any case, that leaves all other self-selected
> volunteers free to self-select.
> IETF leadership is another story.  Though again, one wonders what the
> EEOC would think of the NomCom discriminating on bases for which
> discrimination in employment is forbidden -- the NomCom isn't an
> employer, so perhaps "nothing" is what the EEOC would think, but maybe
> Congress would think something else entirely.  Again, speak to a lawyer
> before you think of engaging in such discrimination at the NomCom!
> Even so, the NomCom selects from among the group of self-selected
> volunteers.

I'm really trying to stay out of this discussion, but I did quickly
want to add something:
"the NomCom selects from among the *limited* group of self-selected volunteers."

The nomination period is currently open -- it's easy to nominate
someone, the form is here:
The list of desired expertise is here:

The list of open positions is: 6 positions for IAB, and one each for
ART, INT, OPS, RTG, SEC, TSV. Also one open LLC Board Member position
and one IETF Trust position.

The nomcom can only appoint from the slate of volunteers -- help build
the IETF you want by providing them with candidates to choose from...


> We can have a self-selected volunteer organization with zero control
> over its volunteers diversity scores, or we can have a non-volunteer
> organization that might be able to have an effect on the diversity of
> its actual participants through bylaws and governance that would have
> to..  not run afoul of American laws (the IETF, ISOC, and related
> entities being American legal entities).
> Who here can imagine the IETF no longer being a volunteer organization?
> I can, with effort anyways.  I can imagine the IETF being like the
> Unicode Consortium, the IEEE, OASIS, ISO/ANSI, ITU-T -- pay-big-bucks-
> to-play.  It's somewhat surprising that the IETF has not yet become a
> pay-to-play organization, or that it exists at all instead of the ITU-T
> taking over its functions.  The IETF becoming pay-to-play would be the
> simplest way to put an end to all the recent bickering on this list, so
> there's that.
> Nico
> --

I don't think the execution is relevant when it was obviously a bad
idea in the first place.
This is like putting rabid weasels in your pants, and later expressing
regret at having chosen those particular rabid weasels and that pair
of pants.