[rfc-i] Who decides on the contracts

Paul Hoffman paul.hoffman at vpnc.org
Tue Jan 4 16:53:22 PST 2011

On 1/4/11 4:32 PM, Joel M. Halpern wrote:
> I hope that in eliding to highlight one point, I have not miss-stated
> your message:
> On 1/4/2011 6:52 PM, Paul Hoffman wrote:
> ...
>> "works in tandem with" doesn't mean "must agree with them on contracts".
>> If the proposed model is changed to have either the RSE or IAOC decide
>> on contracts, *of course* that body would consult with the other.
> ...
> If we all agreed on what was "obvious" (a term with similar tone to "of
> course they would do X"), then we would not be having this discussion.
> Yes, Bob and you both agree that would be an obvious and correct thing
> to do.
> But if it is actually important to the process (and I think it is), then
> it better be written down so that when all of us discussing this burn
> out, those stuck with what we write will still do the correct thing.

We fully agree.

> Writing this so that it specifies sufficient interaction, without
> binding how the IAOC goes about its necessary part of the process is
> tricky.

The current wording in RFC 5620 says:
    o  Works with the IAOC for contractual responsibilities.
    4.  Coordinating with the IAB and/or IAOC and, together with the IAB
        and/or IAOC, participating in reviews of the RFC Publisher, RFC
        Production Center, and Independent Submission Editor functions to
        ensure the above-mentioned continuity;
    Since the IAOC maintains oversight of the implementation, the RFC
    Series Editor is expected to be invited and to participate in reviews
    of that implementation.
Maybe we have already done that tricky part.

> And getting the balance among the fact that the RSE is responsible for
> the proper operation of the system, the IAOC is responsible for the
> contract, and the IAB is responsible for high level policy, is hard to
> write in a way that respects all of the players.

RFC 5620 is far from perfect, but I think it is adequate in this respect.

> In particular, the RSE
> needs to have sufficient weight in the process so that the contract does
> not leave him with something he strongly believes won't work. (I started
> to write "thinks", but if he just thinks it won't work, and the IAOC
> thinks it is the right answer, then they should be able to go ahead with
> it. I am concerned about a stronger difference of views.)

If the RSE strongly believes that an IAOC selection won't work, he can 
bring that to the IAB; they will probably care about that strong of a 
difference. Also, the IAOC is also motivated to keep the RSE from 
quitting, so they are certainly likely to take that into account in 
their contract decisions with the PC and Publisher.

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