[rfc-i] Fwd: FW: New Version Notification for draft-iab-rfc-editor-model-v2-02.txt

John Levine johnl at taugh.com
Thu Jun 30 21:33:39 PDT 2011

I agree, this is a lot easier to follow.

>1) The IAOC provided specific text describing the vendor selection 

It looks reasonable.  The RSE is deeply involved, which I would think
is a good thing, since the RSE has to deal with whoever is selected
more closely than anyone else does.  It's not clear to me who's
supposed to negotiate the vendor contract once the selection committee
picks a vendor.  The selection committee?  The RSE?  The IAOC?  I
would assume it's the selection committee, or more likely a small
subset thereof, in which case the sentence about referring matters
back to the same committee in case of no contract seems redundant.
Perhaps say that the committee selects a vendor and negotiates a
contract acceptable to the IAOC.  If contract negotiations fail, that
might be for a variety of reasons, e.g. a) the vendor has unreasonable
expectations, b) the IAOC has unreasonable expectations, c) whoever is
doing the negotiation isn't very good at it. (Or quite possibly all
three.)  I would NOT try to specify what happens then, other than
perhaps to make it clear that the job of the selection commitee and
the IAOC is to make something work.

>2) As the RSOC began working, it was noted that the requirement in this 
>document for documentation of the rules of the RSOC, and of the 
>selection process for the RSE, seem much more strict here than in RFCs 
>guiding other selection processes and bodies.  The text may well be more 
>onerous than is needed to ensure suitable community transparency. 
>Opinions on whether this can be relaxed, and suggested text, are solicited.

I would take out the stuff about the relationship between the IAB and
the RSOC other than to note that the RSOC serves at the pleasure of
the IAB but in the interest of institutional memory the terms are
intended to be fairly long, e.g. two years renewable or whatever.  If
the IAB doesn't understand that the point of the RSOC is to offload
work onto a group they trust, no amount of verbiage will fix that.
(Not that I expect it to be a problem.)

I would also suggest simplifying and clarifying the job of the RSOC.  As
I understand it, the duties include:

* Define and publish the RSE selection process, then select the RSE,
  subject to confirmation by the IAB

* Negotiate the contract with the RSE, subject to confirmation by IAB
  and IASA

* Tell the IAB at least annually how the RSE is doing

* Provide advice to the RSE as needed. (The RSE and RSOC get to decide
  what "as needed" means.)

* Keep enough records to preserve institutional memory.

By the way, is the RSE supposed to have a definite term of office, like
a year renewable?

Finally, here's a thought about the section on volunteerism.  You're
right, insofar as it's practical, it's a fine idea, encourages new
people to pitch in, and keeps costs down.  But once the workload for a
function passes a certain level, you can get to a point where the only
people who can afford to be "volunteers" are in fact paid by their
employers to do the "volunteer" job, rather limiting the pool of
people who might do it.  An egregious example of this is the ICANN
board, which sucks up close to full time but pays only travel
expenses.  I don't see the volunteer tasks here getting to that point
yet, but it's something to keep in mind.


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