[rfc-i] RFC citations committee I-D issued

RJ Atkinson rja.lists at gmail.com
Fri Feb 11 08:14:03 PST 2011

Earlier, Ted Hardie wrote:
> Note that URNs are available for this, so that you can have long term
> identifier without reference to who hosts it.  See RFC 2648, which
> has
> draft-nss = "id:" string
> The example the draft gives is:
> urn:ietf:id:ietf-urn-ietf-06
> Note that this cites a specific version.


Sadly, no web browser that I use can locate an ID from
a URN alone.  Apparently that is a common circumstance
at present.

I wish URNs were more widely useful in widely deployed tools,
but sadly today they aren't.   I don't object to someone
including a URN in a citation.   I also don't think that today
(or in the near future) a URN in a citation helps a reader
of the citation locate a copy of the cited document.


Back to the root issue, whether to include a URL for I-Ds
or not, the committee did discuss this.  The challenge in
always including them appeared to be the perception that URLs 
pointing to tools.ietf.org are not "stable enough" [1] combined 
with the observation that I-D URLs offered at www.ietf.org 
really do break after 6 months.

If either the IETF declared tools.ietf.org to be a "production"
"reliable" web server OR the IETF offered "permanent/long-lived"
URLs for both current and historical IDs, then one imagines that
particular committee recommendation might have been different.



[1] I consider tools.ietf.org to be well maintained and highly
    available, for my own part.

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