[rfc-i] new draft summarizing updated Transitional RFC Editor recommendations now available

Brian E Carpenter brian.e.carpenter at gmail.com
Sun Dec 12 12:47:01 PST 2010

Just a few (delayed) comments:

On 2010-12-01 09:26, SM wrote:
> Hello,
> At 00:47 23-11-10, Glenn Kowack wrote:
>> A new draft summarizing updated Transitional RFC Recommendations,
>> "draft-kowack-rfc-editor-model-v2-overview-00" is now available.
>> http://datatracker.ietf.org/doc/draft-kowack-rfc-editor-model-v2-overview/?include_text=1
> It's odd to reference the datatracker for this draft.  Is the document
> source "Network Working Group" (see RFC 5741)?
> Quoting the Abstract Section:
>   "The RFC Editor is a set of functions that accepts draft documents
>    from the community, makes edits and other changes for clarity and
>    formal correctness, and publishes and archives openly-accessible
>    RFCs.  Editorial services are provided by a Production Center,
>    publication and access services by a 'Publisher'.  The RFC Series
>    Editor is responsible for ensure ongoing operations as well as
>    development of the Editor function and the Series."
> If that sums up the RFC Editor Model, do we really have to get into a
> long discussion about it?  I don't think so.  If the draft is to serve
> as a basis for coming up with a RFC Editor Model, it could reuse some of
> the text from RFC 5620.

But that RFC is too long. I think there are some arguments for writing
new, more concise, text.

> In Section 2.2:
>   "For example, RFC Editor functions could be implemented under
>    separate or joint contractual arrangements, and bidders may make
>    proposals that could include one or more contractors.  Determining
>    the acceptability of various implementations is the responsibility
>    of the RFC Series Editor and the IAOC, in consultation with the
>    Policy Council."
> What is this Policy Council?

I assume that's an editing oversight and the REOC was intended.

> In Section 2.3:
>   "RFC Editor internal reporting structure is subject to change over
>    time depending, for example, on plans and the manner in which
>    contracts are awarded."
> This is internal affairs.  I suggest leaving this up to the IOAC.

Well, since the RSE is supposed to be the ringmaster, not the IAD,
I think the IAOC will not be involved in the fine details.

> From Section 3.3:
>   "RFC Publisher and RFC Production Center contractors are recommended
>    by the Series Editor and IAOC after an open RFP process, and approved
>    by the IAB."
> What does the IAB have to do with contractual agreements?

The IAB is chartered to "approve the appointment of an organization to
act as RFC Editor". The IAD is chartered with "negotiating and maintaining
contracts or equivalent instruments with outside organizations". I think
the proposed text is compatible with both.

> From Section 4.1:
>   "The RFC Series Editor appointee is an individual.  The Series Editor
>    is designated by the IAB, and may be removed by the IAB, subject to
>    contractual requirements."
> This is not an appointment; it is more of a contract.

Any employment is a contract of sorts. What's your point?

> From Section 4.2:
>   "The Series Editor is responsible for ensuring that the Editor
>    policies are adhered to and developed in line with community
>    interests."
> What community is that?

I assume it's shorthand for "the Internet technical community."

> The title of Section 4.2.5 is "Represent the Series to the Rest of the
> World".  Is that really needed?

As others have said, yes. I tend to agree with Ted Hardie that
80% of the actual work is concerned with document flow, but external
relations, even beyond the Internet technical community, are
inevitably needed.

> From Section
>   "authoritative community entities (e.g., the IETF Trust regarding
>    IP notices"
> The IETF Trust is not authoritative for Internet Protocol notices. :-)

Yes, a misprunt.

> If the IAB wants to divest its responsibility and leave it to the REOC
> to run the RFC Series, it is free to do so.  Having so many committee is
> a bad idea though.

The IAB *is not* responsible for running the series. Its responsibility
is extremely general in nature: "The IAB must approve the appointment
of an organization to act as RFC Editor and the general policy followed
by the RFC Editor." Yet again, that is the entirety of the IAB's charter
responsibility. No more and no less, and I think this draft reflects
it quite well.

Having an oversight committee is good practice, since we want the RFC series
to reflect the needs of the Internet technical community.

> In Section 6.1:
>   "Disagreements between RFC Editor Components and Model
>    Participants"
> This is about contractual relationships.  It does not matter what a RFC
> says as it cannot override a contract.

No, but it can provide a channel for conciliation before having to
"go nuclear" by invoking penalties and cancellation clauses from the


> To summarize, I am far from convinced after reading
> draft-kowack-rfc-editor-model-v2-overview.
> Regards,
> -sm
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