[rfc-i] Short summary of IAB discussion

Olaf Kolkman olaf at NLnetLabs.nl
Mon Jan 10 02:32:41 PST 2011

On Jan 9, 2011, at 12:12 AM, Dave CROCKER wrote:

> On 1/7/2011 11:40 AM, Scott O. Bradner wrote:
>>> Olaf said
>>> I believe that what Andrew exposes
>>> is that we setting precedent by hiring staff with strategic
>>> responsibilities.
>> pls clarify - in what way does Glenn's picture of the role of RSE
>> have different "strategic responsibilities" than did Jon Postel?

> Indeed.  The RFC Series Editor has always had strategic responsibilities, as have the IETF Chair and the IAB Chair.  We "hire" all those folk.
> None of them has ever been a true "volunteer".  They have not donated their time.  They are paid for their work in these roles.

I believe there is a big difference between strategic I* folks being that are 'donated' by sponsoring organizations and ISOC hiring strategic staff on behalf of the 'greater IETF'.  Jon Postel was a leader/strategist by nature, he and all RFC Editors assumed strategic responsibility implicitly. We are now calling out that responsibility very explicitly and hiring for it.

I am not spending very many words on this because I believe that we all agree that a strategic role is needed and that a discussion about the above might be distractive.

> What is distracting people's thinking is the fact that for the current round involving the RSE, the funding will come from the IETF itself (or, at least, from ISOC) rather than some random outside source.

I would call that 'greater IETF' (the 4 streams) and realistically there have not been any cycles thinking about other ways of funding than through IASA budgets. I would argue that such is not needed and that, all within reason, funding is not the issue as long as transparency in what is funding is provided. Remember that IASA is spanning more than just the 'narrow IETF'.

(I am not trying to build an argument, just trying to explain why funding is _not_ a distraction to me. Personally, I want to optimize on what is best for the community, funding is important, but secondary)

> But as important as that is pragmatically it has nothing to do with the point raised here, namely "strategic responsibilities".
> The change being proposed is a rather profound one of moving strategic responsibilities for the RFC Editor from the RSE to a (new) committee.

Clarification question, to make sure I understand we are talking about the same: "The change being proposed" is the change that Paul proposes?



Olaf M. Kolkman                        NLnet Labs
                                       Science Park 140, 
http://www.nlnetlabs.nl/               1098 XG Amsterdam

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