Re: [Recentattendees] IETF 100, Singapore -- proposed path forward and request for input

Ted Hardie <ted.ietf@gmail.com> Sun, 22 May 2016 10:32 UTC

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From: Ted Hardie <ted.ietf@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 22 May 2016 06:32:06 -0400
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Subject: Re: [Recentattendees] IETF 100, Singapore -- proposed path forward and request for input
To: Eliot Lear <lear@cisco.com>
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Hi Eliot,

My comments up thread suggested that we start from a set of community
agreed principles and use those to evaluate whether a particular venue did
or did not meet our requirements; the contrast I was aiming for was from
attempting to reason from individuals' reports of their own level of
comfort or concern.

A corollary question is, of course, what those principles ought to be.  I
started with Fred's statement because I believe it is a reasonable
statement to use as a basis for discuss.  I don't agree with all of it (I'd
disagree with the weight given accessibility, for example, which seems less
than it ought to be), but its statements on inclusion seemed to me critical
for any group that aspires to base its legitimacy on its openness.

If I understand you correctly, you see any and all of the principles as
ones we might choose to let slide in order to meet some other goal.   In
that context, I find the phrase "weighting the impact to participants" to
be worrying.  If you naively attempt to do that weighting by assessing the
impact per individual and multiplying it out by the number of individuals
you expect to fall in the class, you can easily end up continually
disadvantaging minority groups.  Doing it fairly by any means will be
difficult.

I personally believe, because of the importance of openness to our basic
operation, principles of inclusiveness should not be part of the meeting
trade-off except in extraordinary circumstances.

regards,

Ted



On Sun, May 22, 2016 at 5:15 AM, Eliot Lear <lear@cisco.com> wrote:

> Ted,
>
> I do not believe that the IAOC used "novelty" as one of their criteria.
> My understanding was that this was an attempt to find a venue convenient
> to Asian participants as part of the normal meeting cycle that also
> happened to be affordable.  Perhaps someone from the IAOC would like to
> comment further.  I'd also be curious to know if the number "100" had
> any particular import in this process, referring to Jon Peterson's
> comments.
>
> Wikipedia indicates that quite a number of countries, including one in
> which I believe you resided, do not support parental rights of same sex
> couples.  If that is what this is about, there are a number countries we
> have already been to that would have caused the LGBT community a problem.
>
> We have had in a problem getting people into our meetings based on their
> nationalities.  Certainly the Chinese among us must be having a good
> chuckle about this conversation, especially those that were turned down
> for their visas by one country or another.  Some of these issues are
> simply unavoidable.  Consider the person who is in the process of a visa
> renewal in the U.S.  In other cases, the situation is far more
> complicated.  Case and point: the last time I went to Russia it required
> an exhaustive visa process, which I am given to understand is due to how
> Russians are treated by the United States.
>
> There are many places where one can be arrested for saying or printing
> certain things.  The laws vary.  This was a serious concern when we went
> to one country in particular.  We've made the conscious decision to
> weight other values over freedom of speech.  The same has happened less
> consciously with freedom of religion, even though that has had at least
> some impact on us with many stores being closed on certain days.
>
> Each of these issues is not binary, but rather countries' positions
> reside on a spectrum.  Their summation is not a simple ANDing.  Were it
> so, we would not have any place to go.  The IAOC needs to consider these
> matters, weighting the impact to participants.  On the whole I
> sympathize with Stephen's position that the IAOC should be as
> transparent as possible in its decision making.  Furthermore, certainly
> polling the community for their views is always appropriate if the poll
> is well constructed (queue Dave Crocker).
>
> Eliot
>
>