[rfc-i] citing historic internet drafts

Joe Touch touch at ISI.EDU
Wed Oct 15 10:44:23 PDT 2008

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Julian Reschke wrote:
> Joe Touch wrote:
>> ...
>>> Maybe I'm a bit slow with process issues like this, but to me, as a
>>> reader, "work in progress" means just that: this is not finished, but
>>> somebody is working on it.
>>> So, again, what's the best way to cite something that once was published
>>> as ID, but was abandoned?
>>> It seems to me that there is none, except by lying to the reader.
>> You can always say "expired Internet Draft", either in addition, or
>> instead.
> Potentially. My impression is that the RFC-Editor refuses *anything*
> that contains the term "draft".
>> However, I don't think it's useful to try to argue about the use of
>> document terms in the IETF. RFCs aren't requests for anything, so the
>> fact that Works in Progress expire isn't particularly problematic either.
> The difference here is that most readers do not care what the acronym
> RFC stands for, while stating that something is "Work in Progress" when
> it clearly isn't simply is stupid (I think).

Fine. Call it WIP and then they're both equally obscure/stupid.

You should be able to cite a draft for informative, 'supplemental'
references, the same way you can cite emails or websites. All are OK for
giving credit where due, and all are inappropriate for material whose
content is needed to understand the citing document.

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