[rfc-i] citing historic internet drafts

RFC Editor rfc-editor at rfc-editor.org
Tue Oct 21 13:58:52 PDT 2008

Part 4

----- Forwarded message from Bob Braden <braden at ISI.EDU> -----

Cc: rfc-editor at rfc-editor.org
From: Bob Braden <braden at ISI.EDU>
Subject: Re: [rfc-i] citing historic internet drafts
Date: Mon, 20 Oct 2008 11:12:19 -0700
To: Julian Reschke <julian.reschke at gmx.de>

>So, just this:
>    [DASLREQ]  Davis, J., Reddy, S., and J. Slein, "Requirements  
>for DAV
>               Searching and Locating", February 1999, <http://
>               www.webdav.org/dasl/requirements/
>               draft-dasl-requirements-01.html>.
>would be ok?

How about this?

>    [DASLREQ]  Davis, J., Reddy, S., and J. Slein, "Requirements  
>for DAV
>               Searching and Locating", February 1999, <http://
>               www.webdav.org/dasl/requirements/

>>Then the remaining issue would seem to be the stabiity of the  
>>webdav archive.
>>We hate URLs like that, but in the end we sometimes have to be  
>I really like to understand *what* kind of URLs you dislike -- ones  
>containing the original "draft-" string? That's fixable in this  
>case (as I have write access to webdav.org).

We dislike too specific URLs, which are much less likely to be stable  
the generic root URLs.  Readers can be expected to apply some  
intelligence, given
the general neighborhood; the URLs don't have to be  one-click.  The  
gave above is still pretty specific; www.webdav.org should be  
sufficient, I
would think, but I don't want to argue that point.
>Of course with tools.ietf.org and Google internet drafts do not  
>vanish anymore, and the draft name *is* a good reference.

See my comments below about adult supervision over archival document  
series.  The fact that
pragmatically I-Ds are available does not change the principle.

>>>>This is another case of a draft that clearly is not work in  
>>>>progress: the spec that references it
>>Wasn't it in progress in July 1999?
>Yes, it was.

So "work in progress" in the citation to a 1999 document is actually  

>So is it allowed to both say "work in progress", and then add an  
>annotation (xml2rfc <annotation> element) that gives more details?

XML2RFC is just a tool.  The issue is what is in the final text.

>Well, both are relevant to the reader; "work in progress" is  
>plainly confusing because it suggests that somebody is working on  
>the document. In this particular case it would mean that
>the development of DASL somehow was forked by me (leading to  
>RFC5323), while others may be working on a potentially competing  

In the case of independent submissions, when questions of derivation  
arise, we ask the
authors to spell it out explicitly in the text, not depend upon some  
inferences from the
format of the references.  We don't have control over IETF documents  
in this regard,
of course.

Bob Braden

>BR, Julian

----- End forwarded message -----

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