[rfc-i] draft-iab-rfc-editor-model-v2-02 - policy authority

Dave CROCKER dhc at dcrocker.net
Fri Jul 1 07:50:50 PDT 2011

On 7/1/2011 7:33 AM, RJ Atkinson wrote:
> With regard to Dave Crocker's note on terminology, I strongly prefer
> using "Internet community" over "IETF community" (as Olaf's words
> above already do), because any plain-language reading of the phrase
> "IETF community" has a meaning that is far too narrow.  The RFC series
> serves not only the IETF/IESG, and separately also the IRTF/IRSG/IAB,
> but also the broader Internet research, development, operations,
> and user communities.  We want to use and retain clear language that
> keeps the RFC series scope obviously broad.

This is an important conceptual distinction about the scope of the RFC Series. 
I think it's definitely justified, in terms of who is being served.

However as soon as the scope is expanded to be that wide, I don't see a 
practical way to count that almost-infinite group to have "control" over RFC 
Series policy decision-making.  By contrast, we have an approximation we use for 
assessing rough consensus within the IRTF/IETF/IAB community.

A way to put the choice here:

    1.  For matters of policy, is the final assessment done by the IAB?  If not, 
then who?  By final, I mean top of the appeals chain, if there is one.(*)

    2.  Whoever does that final assessment, is the decision make based on their 
own preferences or based on their sense of community rough consensus, for some 
definition of community?

    3. If they do it on their own, why is community rough consensus not used?


(*) Decision-making hierarchy models make efficiency tradeoffs, involving 
delegation.  When authority is delegated, there is usually an ability to 
pre-empt the delegated authority's decision through a review/appeal process, so 
that higher group retains "ultimate" authority.


   Dave Crocker
   Brandenburg InternetWorking

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