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Parent issue: RFC Series Streams Specific issue: How to add a new document stream to the Series

Size (time): 18+ months Importance/Urgency: High/Medium

Problem Statement: The concept of RFC Streams was defined in RFC 4844. At the time, the addition of new document streams was not advised. As the Series eveolves, however, it becomes possible and even likely that new communities of document authors will want to publish through the Series while not being a “fit” for the broader IETF, IRTF, IAB, or Independent Submission streams.

In May 2012, a group focusing on federated internet identity policies called REFEDs contacted the RFC Series Editor regarding potentially becoming a new stream. Determining if their documents would add to the quality and value of the Series, whether those documents should be published through an existing stream, and what the financial implications will provide an excellent “pilot” to explore what it would take to add a new document stream to the Series.

Closing Action

The RSE and the RSOC agreed at the RSOC retreat that the proposal made by Nevil Brownlee, ISE, to use the Independent Stream (see proposal below) will be used for the immediate use case of REFEDs. This solution will be preferred over reopening the question of creating new streams if and when other groups request a new stream for their documents.

RSE Actions:

  • Open discussion with REFEDs, keeping RSOC and RPC informed
  • Explore any reasonable alternatives (a new, separate contract with AMS? Feed REFED docs through the Independent Stream? Other?) (N/A)
  • Formula for financial costs potentially associated with a new Stream? (N/A)

RSOC Actions:

  • Feedback required on procedure for adding new streams and how to determine quality

RFC Production Center & Publisher Actions:

  • provide input on staffing impact
  • provide input on how to determine quality

Current proposal (from the Independent Submissions Editor) :

 1. When one of those organisations makes an Independent Submission, it
 would be in the form of an Internet Draft, with a paragraph in its
 introduction clearly stating how it was developed, how it was
 reviewed, and how strong a consensus it achieved.
 2. The ISE would review it (like any other submission), and possibly
 get some reviews from the IETF community so as to check that it
 clearly was of interest to the Internet Community, i.e. the
 readers and users of RFCs.
 3. When satisfied that the draft is suitable for publishing, the
 ISE could ask the ISEB to see whether any of them object to its
 being published because it did not seem to be of interest
 to our community.
 4. After that the document would go to IESG for its 5742 review,
 then - after any final improvements - it would be published. 


Financial: Adding a new stream will have financial impact, but exactly how much will depend on a variety of factors, including

  • number of new documents published
  • training time for staff and new authors

Project schedules: While important, this may not impact schedules for RFC Format or Style Guide efforts.


  • Must determine selection and process criteria in order to make sure the quality of the RFC Series as a whole is maintained
  • Consider the concern regarding how to mitigate confusion (already strong within the community) around an additional stream. (If existing streams are not understood, it is possible that a new stream would only confuse matters further.)
  • Consider what would be required to close a stream, both in the cases of a voluntary closure versus one done perhaps because quality of documents is not up to Series expectations.

Estimated completion date: TBD

newstream.txt · Last modified: 2013/07/29 11:36 by rsewikiadmin