Re: the old fellowship program, was Wow, we're famous

Warren Kumari <> Fri, 16 April 2021 15:47 UTC

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From: Warren Kumari <>
Date: Fri, 16 Apr 2021 11:47:12 -0400
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Re: the old fellowship program, was Wow, we're famous
To: Keith Moore <>
Cc: IETF Discuss <>
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On Thu, Apr 15, 2021 at 8:54 PM Keith Moore <>

> On 4/15/21 8:37 PM, Michael Thomas wrote:
> I've found that newcomers are much more likely to be taken favorably if
> they're well-prepared.
> Well, the nature of a newcomer is that they **won't** be well prepared.
> It's sort of the nature of the beast.
> Disagree.   They won't know everything, of course, but if they know enough
> about the subject matter to clearly know what they're talking about,
> they're much more likely to be taken seriously.

Yup - but it's not just the subject matter, it's also some of the
history/culture/etc. I *always* recommend that newcomers read the Tao ( It's much much less scary to
participate if you have at least some vague idea how the system works. Even
"silly" things like dress code (doesn't really apply any more), what the
dots mean, what a blue sheet is, etc. Knowing some of this stuff makes
people feel more like insiders, instead of wondering why people keep
humming, or shouting "Mike!!!"

And the problem of participants not being well-prepared isn't at all
> limited to newcomers to IETF.

Indeed. As with any group, we have our own "culture" and clique - we have
tried to make it easier for people to come in (see the Tao, Scott Bradner's
Newcomer videos, Edu team, Mentors, etc). We've done more than some other
groups I can think of, but it can still be intimidating.


> Keith

The computing scientist’s main challenge is not to get confused by the
complexities of his own making.
  -- E. W. Dijkstra