[rfc-i] Branding

Heather Flanagan (RFC Series Editor) rse at rfc-editor.org
Mon Aug 6 09:28:01 PDT 2012

On 8/4/12 7:52 AM, Phillip Hallam-Baker wrote:
> How about a different color for Proposed and Standard?

I very much hesitate to rely on color for anything official.  Color gets
complicated when talking about accessibility, and a different kind of
complicated when talking about how this might apply to different streams
as well as the different tracks within the IETF.  Who gets what color,
how to do we educate the readers as to what the colors mean, and so on.
It sounds like we are just moving the problem around.

> That might encourage more people to work on promotion...

I admit, I didn't track that thought - how would this encourage people
to work on promotion? Promotion of what?  The Series?  The differences
within the Series?  Something else?

> Also Informational and experimental could be visually distinct.
> I am thinking they should all have icons in the masthead. Experimental
> would have a test tube, retort, flasky chemistry set up. Only proposed
> and standard would have the IETF logo (proposed would have a question
> mark).
> Informational would be tricky.

I think (but am not sure) that some of this has been hashed out in the
comparatively recent past by the IETF, probably when we went from Draft,
Proposed, and Standard to just Proposed and Standard.  I don't have the
details on that discussion.  Does anyone else have more information on
what came up with the concept of branding and colors in the past?


> On Sat, Aug 4, 2012 at 2:02 AM, Joe Hildebrand (jhildebr)
> <jhildebr at cisco.com> wrote:
>> On 8/3/12 2:30 AM, ""Martin J. Dürst"" <duerst at it.aoyama.ac.jp> wrote:
>>> As to the 'IETF' part, I think there are two broadly different views of
>>> the relationship between the IETF and the RFC Editor. I'd call the first
>>> the "insider view". That view sees the IETF and the RFC Editor as two
>>> essentially totally separate entities. The second view I'd call the
>>> "outsider view". That view thinks IETF when they hear RFC, and RFC when
>>> they hear IETF.
>>> You seem to argue from the viewpoint of the "insider view". Joe and I
>>> seem to argue from the viewpoint of the "outsider view". So maybe we
>>> have to change levels and talk about these two views before we can talk
>>> again about branding.
>> I largely agree with what Martin is saying, but I'd tweak it a little bit.
>>  Regardless of the format decided upon, we might decide to have a somewhat
>> different brand for consensus-based output of the IETF, IRTF, ISE, IAB,
>> etc.
>> Once you can have a brand that goes beyond the capabilities of the
>> lineprinter format, we might decide that the differences in brand are
>> important.  Alternately, we might decide that the "RFC" brand is more
>> important than the brand of the organization or individual that produced
>> the work.  I'm not convinced one way or the other yet, but it seems like
>> we should make an explicit decision.
>> For example, the fact that the IRC cluster of RFCs (2810-2813) is
>> informational and not really the output of a consensus-based approach by
>> the IETF has been surprising to many people that I've talked to over the
>> years.  "It's got an RFC number, so it must be good"
>> Note: I'm not saying that IRC is bad here, or that the process was flawed,
>> or anything like that.  The question is, to a casual observer, should
>> those RFCs look exactly the same (aside from the word "INFORMATIONAL" in
>> the title) as a fully consensus-based document?
>> --
>> Joe Hildebrand
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