[rfc-i] issue: canonical formats

Paul Hoffman paul.hoffman at vpnc.org
Fri Jun 1 11:33:54 PDT 2012

On Jun 1, 2012, at 9:33 AM, Joe Hildebrand wrote:

> On 6/1/12 8:55 AM, "Paul Hoffman" <paul.hoffman at vpnc.org> wrote:
>> What the heck is a "legal use case"? Do you have any evidence of a law
>> anywhere that says "the canonical format for publishing must be displayable"?
>> From Heather's requirements list:
> "* to verify the final content of a document in cases of legal dispute"
> "While the canonical source format MUST be easily converted in to a variety
> of other formats, a single canonical display format must exist to satisfy
> the requirements of legal and content disputes"

This thread is a proposal to change the requirements list to not have a canonical display format. If a court says "give us an exact copy of RFC 9886", we send them the canonical document. If they ask "what does this look like", we say "it looks like many things, such as these different versions". Both are completely truthful and actually useful to a court.

> I'm more worried about contracts than IPR.  The use case is that a contract
> specifies that software X complies with RFC Y.  How does an expert witness
> decide?

If an expert witness can take our canonical format and turn it into a form that does not have all the information in it, that's pretty easy to detect, yes?

--Paul Hoffman

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