[rfc-i] a possible refinement to draft-iab-rfc-editor-model

Brian E Carpenter brian.e.carpenter at gmail.com
Fri Mar 20 22:13:20 PDT 2009


Leslie,

Let me try to respond at as high a level as possible, because
although the devil may as usual be hiding in the details, we
do need rough consensus on the principles.

We have running code for the flying-in-formation situation:
the principles of what the Secretariat is supposed to do
come from some approximation to IETF consensus as interpreted
by the IESG and the IETF Chair (with some input from the IAB
and IRTF about their requirements). But the contracts and daily
operations are under the eye of the IAOC and IAD.

(Note: to say that this is running code is not to say it's
perfect, but it hasn't crashed yet despite changing the engines
in flight.)

Now, what you're proposing seems more complicated than this model.
I think you're saying that the principles of what the RFCEd is supposed
to do come from some approximation to community consensus as interpreted
by the IAB (with input from the IETF, IESG, IRTF and independent
opinion about their requirements). But another committee is created
to make this requirements-interpretation an ongoing process on
behalf of the IAB. And the contracts and daily operations are
under the eye of the IAOC and IAD.

What bothers me a bit about this at first sight is that it potentially
creates shifting sands among the requirements, and that is a poor
basis for stable contractual operations. I'm a bit worried about
that. Your proposed committee would have to be chartered quite
narrowly to avoid that problem. I'm not sure how it's going to work,
since once an N-year contract is signed, the only tuning that can be
done is within the terms of the contracts, which are managed by the IAD.
The opportunity to make significant changes only comes when the contracts
are up for renewal. As far as I can see, the new committee essentially
becomes a standing RFI/RFP requirements committee, and that sounds
close to being a delegation from the IAOC, not from the IAB.

     Brian


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