[rfc-i] RFC 5741 document header [was: do not publish ...]

Alfred =?hp-roman8?B?SM5uZXM=?= ah at TR-Sys.de
Wed Jan 6 18:06:34 PST 2010

[[ changing Subject line to more sensical and shorter one ]]

At Sun Jan 3 13:41:30 PST 2010, Julian Reschke wrote:

> In the meantime, I came across another question that would have
> surfaced earlier if somebody actually had tried to implement this.
> RFC 5741 now makes the top left header for IETF submissions
>    Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)
> ...which is easy on the eyes, easy to understand, and ... 39 characters
> long.
> The line width for RFCs is 72, thus, using "naive" table formatting, a
> maximum of 36 characters is available in each column.

All the draft versions of RFC 5741 since -01 had a common format for
<document source> in the first heading line of an RFC, without the
added acronyms:

|     *  Internet Engineering Task Force
|     *  Internet Architecture Board
|     *  Internet Research Task Force
|     *  Independent

The issue with exceeding line space limits (half-width of 72 places)
had been discussed in the early days of the draft, from version -00
(which said "IETF Stream", ..., "Independent Stream" instead) to
draft version -01, when the desire was to expand the acronyms and
get rid of the word "Stream" -- both for understandability and for
line space reasons.

Someone brought up the "add back parenthetical acronym there"
request, and that has been rejected for exactly the latter reason.
IIRC, consensus was that adding the acronym in Paragraph 2 of
"Status of this Memo" would suffice; there more details for the
document source should be given -- including the name of the
originating IETF WG or IRTF RG, if applicable.  However, that
level of detail information got lost again when it turned out that
for (part of) the IESG it was more important to elaborate on what a
particular RFC is *not* than on what it is and where it comes from.

FWIW: The addition of "Submission" in the last alternative makes
  sense, indeed.

> Without additional changes, xml2rfc would thus output
>    Internet Engineering Task Force
>    (IETF)
> ...wrapping the abbreviation into the next line. Is this acceptable?
> Should formatters make the left-hand column wider than the right column?
> (That might cause problems with long author or organization names).
> Best regards, Julian

I strongly suspect that the line length limits would not only cause
problems for xml2rfc, but also for the production nroff in use.

Given that the balance is disturbed anyway by not having an acronym
for "Independent Submisison", I suggest that the [Transitional-]RSE
make use of his authority and back out the added parenthetical
acronyms instead.

MfG / Kind regards,
  Alfred HÎnes.


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