[uf-discuss] inappropriate behaviour (was: Discussion of public domain declaration template usage)

Christopher St John ckstjohn at gmail.com
Thu Aug 2 22:56:00 PDT 2007

On 8/3/07, Ben Buchanan <microformats at 200ok.com.au> wrote:
> The informal approach worked well when the community was new and
> smaller, but now that it's ramping up it doesn't seem to be coping.
> I'm not claiming there's an easy answer, but we should start by
> accepting there's a problem.

The IETF, that master of rough consensus and running code[1], is often sited as
an example of a group that is good at lightweight standards development. And it
is. But a closer look shows that "lightweight process" is not at all the same as
"no process whatsoever."

A quick read through the home page for the The Internet Engineering Steering
Group[2] shows that there is quite a lot of hard-won wisdom about how groups
of grown-ups[3] cooperate to produce a standard. The IETF process is not
without problems, and I'm not suggesting it's something that should be
copied, but it is a good example of how some real governance is necessary
even for a very results-focused group of engineers.


[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rough_consensus
[2] http://www.ietf.org/iesg.html
[3] And/or prickly unsocialized prima donna engineers pretending to
be grown-ups :-)

Christopher St. John

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