Re: [OAUTH-WG] Mandatory-to-implement token type

Michael Thomas <> Thu, 17 November 2011 16:49 UTC

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Date: Thu, 17 Nov 2011 08:49:02 -0800
From: Michael Thomas <>
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To: Justin Richer <>
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Cc: Barry Leiba <>, oauth WG <>
Subject: Re: [OAUTH-WG] Mandatory-to-implement token type
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On 11/17/2011 07:24 AM, Justin Richer wrote:
> Which brings us to MTI in clients, which makes even less sense. Let's
> say that I'm writing a client to talk to, which hands back
> MAC tokens. I want to comply with the spec, so I implement Bearer
> support in my client, code paths which will never see the light of day.
> Then there's the argument that a generic library is what's really meant
> by "client" here, and that those MUST follow the MTI guidelines. I also
> find this to be ludicrous, since client libraries will implement
> whatever servers support. A good client library will support *both* MAC
> and Bearer together, along with whatever magical tokens that haven't
> been dreamed up yet that are getting traction.

I think this is really the key problem. To date, there isn't a
unified library that clients and servers are using that could
force this issue: every server/site is rolling their own oauth
sdk, and they don't have much reason *now* to change that.
If/when something emerged as being the oauth equivalent of
openssl, then it would make sense to tighten requirements on
such a library to achieve better interoperability. It would also
coincide with actual real world _knowledge_ of what the
appropriate MUST-IMPLEMENT's are instead of guessing.
All a mandatory requirement will do now is alienate a lot
implementations who are otherwise striving to be compliant.

So my bottom line to Stephen: defer this to a later recycle of the