Re: [Json] Normative reference reasoning and logistics

"Joe Hildebrand (jhildebr)" <> Thu, 28 April 2016 17:06 UTC

Return-Path: <>
Received: from localhost (localhost []) by (Postfix) with ESMTP id A397812B047 for <>; Thu, 28 Apr 2016 10:06:30 -0700 (PDT)
X-Virus-Scanned: amavisd-new at
X-Spam-Flag: NO
X-Spam-Score: -15.517
X-Spam-Status: No, score=-15.517 tagged_above=-999 required=5 tests=[BAYES_00=-1.9, DKIM_SIGNED=0.1, DKIM_VALID=-0.1, DKIM_VALID_AU=-0.1, RCVD_IN_DNSWL_HI=-5, RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_H4=-0.01, RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_WL=-0.01, RP_MATCHES_RCVD=-0.996, SPF_PASS=-0.001, USER_IN_DEF_DKIM_WL=-7.5] autolearn=ham autolearn_force=no
Authentication-Results: (amavisd-new); dkim=pass (1024-bit key)
Received: from ([]) by localhost ( []) (amavisd-new, port 10024) with ESMTP id kw04pZja9OLt for <>; Thu, 28 Apr 2016 10:06:24 -0700 (PDT)
Received: from ( []) (using TLSv1.2 with cipher DHE-RSA-SEED-SHA (128/128 bits)) (No client certificate requested) by (Postfix) with ESMTPS id 8271B12D1BF for <>; Thu, 28 Apr 2016 10:06:24 -0700 (PDT)
DKIM-Signature: v=1; a=rsa-sha256; c=relaxed/simple;;; l=2526; q=dns/txt; s=iport; t=1461863184; x=1463072784; h=from:to:subject:date:message-id:references:in-reply-to: content-id:content-transfer-encoding:mime-version; bh=ZmXRTHM14J02N3va1HYyKbcy5h79wZ5gjTsKcaxgTEY=; b=MSUHm+k2nxC9UydslCXdR+qHOtBR4nW5pCihV1F16oCMmsYGTcJejx/+ Q5EnBq4Y7UGyEZHoTRCHEC9vC85Y8f9dt7uSuJsrXCqFxthVHXLJ5GhFt A+I0d+vkgF9e/OtKSGLwXz+sDmq9Y/WuEnc2m9+skLveExa+eV2dINNS5 Y=;
X-IronPort-Anti-Spam-Filtered: true
X-IronPort-Anti-Spam-Result: =?us-ascii?q?A0BABQCTQiJX/5JdJa1egzhTdwYGugCBd?= =?us-ascii?q?iKFbQIcgQ06EgEBAQEBAQFlHAuEQgEBBCMRVQIBCBoCJgICAjAVEAIEE4gqCQW?= =?us-ascii?q?yKJEjAQEBAQEBAQEBAQEBAQEBAQEBAQEWfIUlgXWCVoQ9F4JpK4IrBZgQAYV7g?= =?us-ascii?q?neFJIFnToxchiSJCwEnAjmDa2wBAYZnfwEBAQ?=
X-IronPort-AV: E=Sophos;i="5.24,547,1454976000"; d="scan'208";a="265501196"
Received: from ([]) by with ESMTP/TLS/DHE-RSA-AES256-GCM-SHA384; 28 Apr 2016 17:06:23 +0000
Received: from ( []) by (8.14.5/8.14.5) with ESMTP id u3SH6NHS016533 (version=TLSv1/SSLv3 cipher=AES256-SHA bits=256 verify=FAIL) for <>; Thu, 28 Apr 2016 17:06:23 GMT
Received: from ( by ( with Microsoft SMTP Server (TLS) id 15.0.1104.5; Thu, 28 Apr 2016 13:06:22 -0400
Received: from ([]) by ([]) with mapi id 15.00.1104.009; Thu, 28 Apr 2016 13:06:22 -0400
From: "Joe Hildebrand (jhildebr)" <>
To: "" <>
Thread-Topic: Normative reference reasoning and logistics
Thread-Index: AQHRlAaTE88EUYV2AkmALftkB7sIZp+flv6A
Date: Thu, 28 Apr 2016 17:06:22 +0000
Message-ID: <>
References: <> <>
In-Reply-To: <>
Accept-Language: en-US
Content-Language: en-US
user-agent: Microsoft-MacOutlook/f.15.1.160411
x-ms-exchange-messagesentrepresentingtype: 1
x-ms-exchange-transport-fromentityheader: Hosted
x-originating-ip: []
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"
Content-ID: <>
Content-Transfer-Encoding: base64
MIME-Version: 1.0
Archived-At: <>
Subject: Re: [Json] Normative reference reasoning and logistics
X-Mailman-Version: 2.1.17
Precedence: list
List-Id: "JavaScript Object Notation \(JSON\) WG mailing list" <>
List-Unsubscribe: <>, <>
List-Archive: <>
List-Post: <>
List-Help: <>
List-Subscribe: <>, <>
X-List-Received-Date: Thu, 28 Apr 2016 17:06:30 -0000

Going back to an earlier point in the thread:

On 11/14/15, 11:10 AM, "Tim Bray" <> wrote:

>So, is there a *real* reason why a normative reference might be useful? I think there might be, and it's purely rhetorical (in the formal sense, designed to support an argument): To make it clear to the world
> that all JSON is the same JSON no matter where it's specified.  So I think it would be plausible to add the following to the second paragraph of section 1.2 of 7159 (for convenience:
> ):
>“The reference to ECMA-404 in the previous sentence is normative, not with the usual meaning that implementors need to consult it in order to understand this document, but to emphasize that there are no inconsistencies in the definition of the term “JSON text” in any of its specifications. Note, however, that ECMA-404 allows several practices which this specification recommends avoiding in the interests of maximal interoperability.”

I like this text a lot.  Adding a few more points would be useful, I believe:

- The intent is that the grammar is the same between the two documents, although different descriptions are used.  If there a difference is found between them, ECMA and the IETF will work together to update both documents.

- If an error is found with either document, the other should be examined to see if it has a similar error, and fixed if possible.

- If either document is changed in the future, ECMA and the IETF will work together to ensure that the two documents stay aligned through the change.

There is liaison work to do to ensure that ECMA-404bis has similar language, but I wouldn't have any problem with us publishing a 7159bis draft that included language like this before ECMA is fully onboard.

Joe Hildebrand