Re: Updating BCP 10 -- NomCom

Michael StJohns <mstjohns@comcast.net> Thu, 08 January 2015 18:54 UTC

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Date: Thu, 08 Jan 2015 13:55:04 -0500
To: John C Klensin <john-ietf@jck.com>, Eric Burger <eburger@cs.georgetown.edu>,ietf <ietf@ietf.org>
From: Michael StJohns <mstjohns@comcast.net>
Subject: Re: Updating BCP 10 -- NomCom
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At 11:32 AM 1/8/2015, John C Klensin wrote:
>For example and in the hope of being a bit less vague, I
>personally see no need for liaisons to sit in on candidate
>interviews, to see supposedly-confidential candidate
>questionnaires, to see community input about particular
>candidates, or to participate in Nomcom discussions or be
>exposed to correspondence about particular candidates or
>candidate choice rankings.  And I see some disadvantages to the
>quality and breadth of input the Nomcom is likely to receive to
>their doing so. Do you disagree?


Hi John -

Speaking only to the above, during the Nomcom I ran, I found it useful to pair up the interviewers and used every resource available.  That meant that liaisons participated in the process of asking questions and fleshing out the material we had already gathered from the questionnaires.   We always gave the candidates the option to ask for other interviewers, but AIRC, no one did.

99% of the information on the questionnaire is going to be publicly sourceable I would guess, most of the rest of the information that might be confidential is ephemeral (e.g. candidate A is in the process of looking for a job).

Of course at the time, the actual names of the candidates were seen as confidential.

AFAIK, it's the job of the Chair to prevent Liaisons from exerting undue influence on the process, and I understand that there have been issues in the past where the influence went past the bounds.  That said, the liaisons are likely to have more and relevant information on more of the candidates than the 10 people picked at random from the IETF as a whole.  Failure to use that resource would - IMHO - result in a worst result, not a better one.  Community input is all fine and good, but it has the same bias problems that you get with self-selected surveys.

That is a long way of saying, that yes I disagree.

Later, Mike