RE: Normatively referenced specifications

SM <sm@resistor.net> Thu, 19 December 2013 06:39 UTC

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Date: Wed, 18 Dec 2013 22:37:47 -0800
To: lrosen@rosenlaw.com
From: SM <sm@resistor.net>
Subject: RE: Normatively referenced specifications
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Hi Larry,
At 09:03 18-12-2013, Lawrence Rosen wrote:
>Where in the IETF rules does it say that conformity to the spec is a legal
>requirement in order to implement it? How do you reconcile that with the
>open source rule that says that any FOSS software can be modified without
>asking additional permissions?

As far as I am aware the IETF does not do conformance.

>I know that a patent grant may or may not apply to modified works, but
>Dale's statement seems to make that an absolute in every circumstance, and
>makes conformity a prerequisite for implementation. Is conformity to the
>spec now the most important IETF goal, surpassing FOSS licensing freedom?

The goal(s) is a matter of participation.  If open source people are 
not participating in the discussion about a specification nobody 
would be bothered about the open source implications.  Likewise, if 
the licensing difficulties are not apparent one would assume that 
everything is okay.

Regards,
-sm