[rfc-i] Referencing Internet Drafts

Brian E Carpenter brian.e.carpenter at gmail.com
Fri Jun 16 13:49:11 PDT 2017

On 17/06/2017 08:09, Paul Kyzivat wrote:
> On 6/16/17 3:13 PM, Heather Flanagan (RFC Series Editor) wrote:
>> On 6/16/17 11:42 AM, Paul Kyzivat wrote:
>>> On 6/16/17 2:33 PM, Julian Reschke wrote:
>>>> On 2017-06-16 20:19, Heather Flanagan (RFC Series Editor) wrote:
>>>>> ...
>>>>> Who would make the call as to whether an I-D is a work in progress or a
>>>>> [stale|historic|overtaken by events|your favorite term here] I-D? It's
>>>>> not a simple case of time, and the author of the I-D being referenced
>>>>> might have a difference of opinion than the author doing the
>>>>> referencing.
>>>>> ...
>>>> There'll be edge cases, right. But if an ID hasn't been updated in
>>>> years, it's likely abandoned, right?
>>> Isn't it sufficient to define that an ID that is the most recent version
>>> and hasn't expired is a work in progress, and that others are historic?
>> I don't think it's quite that tidy. For example, there are drafts that
>> are expired but which are in one of the stream manager's queue for
>> consideration (e.g.,
>> https://datatracker.ietf.org/doc/draft-young-entity-category/).
> *That* is a whole different issue. IMO those should not expire!
>> There's also a certain consideration about how useful it is to make this
>> distinction when someone reads the RFC referencing these I-Ds in a year;
>> all the I-Ds may be historic, or may be revised, or may be replaced, or
>> a mix of all the above. Unless the author of the RFC doing the
>> referencing is careful to explain the context in which he or she is
>> referencing the I-D (which they should do regardless) I'm not sure we're
>> helping the reader with an "the I-D being referenced was older than six
>> months at the time this RFC was published".
> Yeah, guess so.
> If change description from "Work in Progress" to "Working Draft" then it 
> ages better, and maybe no need to make a distinction for historic.

Yes, that would work, I think. Heather is correct that this issue is
rare, and the distinction is a judgment call. But it disturbs me (mildly)
that the phrase "Work in Progress" is occasionally used when it's
manifestly untrue.


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