[rfc-i] Format for STDs, BCPs, FIYs

Paul Hoffman paul.hoffman at vpnc.org
Sat Aug 18 08:46:08 PDT 2012

On Aug 18, 2012, at 6:29 AM, Brian E Carpenter <brian.e.carpenter at gmail.com> wrote:

>> I would propose a single file that describes the BCP/STD/FYI, with links
>> to the actual RFCs it consists of.
> For HTML, certainly.
> For printable files (whether plain .txt or something else) I would suggest
> a concatenation of the texts with a preamble that is more use than
> "[Note that this file is a concatenation of more than one RFC.]"

The value for HTML is the same as the value for plain text: it makes it clear that the STD or BCP is not a single document, so references need to be made to the component RFCs.

The file that describes the BCP or STD, regardless of format, might have another value: to give the history of the grouping. As a specific example, a reference to BCP 9 made in August of 2009 meant "RFC 2026". Two months later, it meant "RFC 2026 and RFC 5657", the latter of which has some valuable changes to the IETF process. This type of history would be valuable to someone who is looking at a reference to BCP 9 from, say, 2005.

Yes, this is a proposal for a work project for the RSE. It would be of value to the RFC-reading community, and there is no one else who is tasked with this type of work.

--Paul Hoffman

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