[uf-discuss] Very basic question that is not in the FAQ
Eric A. Meyer
eric at meyerweb.com
Thu Jun 22 08:21:20 PDT 2006
At 1:13 PM +0100 6/22/06, Sam Sethi wrote:
>My take on it is this - Tantek and others started this idea but as it grows
>up (its 1 years old) it should be handed over to some standards body.
>Tantek due to his commercial connection with Technorati - IMHO - should
>divest ownership of Microformats.org to the W3C or some other body. My only
>concern is that this may kill the speed and agility of MF's just as they
I have to disagree with the idea of turning this over to a
standards body, because I agree with your concern over strangulation.
The fastest way to kill microformats is to yoke it with a formalized
process like those of the W3C, IETF, etc.
The original poster asked "who controls microformats" and the
answer is "the microformats community does". Tantek made a number of
excellent points during his talk at @media, the audio for which I
hope will be available soon. If I may be permitted to attempt a poor
* The community collectively determines whether a given
microformat is accepted or not, simply by whether a given microformat
is accepted into wide use or not.
* This works because the goal of a 'standard' (in the de facto
sense) is to interoprate with others. If your proposal isn't
accepted by others, then it won't interoperate; ergo, an active
community acts as its own review process and therefore its own
This is decentralized standardization, which some would argue is
the only kind that has any prayer of working over the long haul
anyway. It's certainly lead to a great deal more movement and
innovation than I've seen in any formalized standards body in the
last decade or so.
Of course, if a given microformat becomes so widely adopted that
it's become a de facto standard, then that is a time when it might be
submitted to an external body (W3C, IETF, etc.) for de jure
standardization. But that would be done on an individual basis, not
for microformats as a whole-- if such a thing were even possible.
Eric A. Meyer (eric at meyerweb.com)
Principal, Complex Spiral Consulting http://complexspiral.com/
"CSS: The Definitive Guide," "CSS2.0 Programmer's Reference,"
"Eric Meyer on CSS," and more http://meyerweb.com/eric/books/
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