[uf-discuss] Re: On emergent policy and self vs governance in common

Chris Messina chris.messina at gmail.com
Sun Jan 14 16:23:33 PST 2007

Hey Ernie,

Thanks for your feedback -- and taking the time to read thru my tome! ;)

Yes, I would very much agree with the two points that you raised and
second your amendments.

For one thing I worry that the microformats "cabal' with end up
leading to fragmented semantic html efforts when the Microformats
community could really stand to benefit from these efforts. While
those other efforts may not result in any "microformats", they may
generate guidelines for community adoption of semantic html behaviors
-- that in turn might result in "widespread, community-sanctioned

This way anyone can play, no one is denied their piece of the semantic
pie, and the original principles that enbue our community can seep
into other related endeavors.

By encouraging this behavior, we position ourselves in the center of
this work, behaving like a more open Apache project for semantic html
undertakings. With the future of browsers now beginning to be
influenced by our work, we need to be cognizant that we have to grow
in a positive direction, and not become simply a clearinghouse for our
pet standards. Instead, we should generally support and promote
semantic html practices and develop a community of knowledge and
practice (whether on our domain or elsewhere) that is squarely bent on
advancing the state of the open web.

Given your clarifications, I think that that is a mandate worthy of pursuit.


On 1/8/07, Dr. Ernie Prabhakar <drernie at opendarwin.org> wrote:
> Hi Chris,
> On Jan 6, 2007, at 2:45 AM, Chris Messina wrote:
> >  I think the point is that anyone should be able to build out and see
> > through the execution and development of a microformats, potentially
> > entirely outside of this list, simply by religiously adhering to the
> > principals by which we govern ourselves and allow ourselves to be
> > governed.
> I think this was a brilliant post, and I'm tempted to agree, but I'm
> not entirely sure what you're asking for!
> I completely agree that we should allow -- nay, encourage --
> microformat-like discussions and proto-standards to emerge and prove
> their viability that don't qualify as "microformats" under the
> current Tantek-inspired definition.
> However, my preference would be that they:
> a) be developed outside this particular list
> b) don't call themselves microformats
> If you're okay with those two constraints, then you have my full
> support, but I'm not sure exactly what you're asking for.  What would
> make sense to me is to:
> a) Promote the term "semantic HTML" for microformat-like specifications
> b) Somebody volunteers to provide lists and wiki hosting services for
> alternate communities
>      (this could even be microformats.org, under a different namespace)
> c) Various individuals who have a concrete vision for non-microformat
> development -- and are prepared to enforce it! -- create communities
> on those alternate sites
> d) Microformats.org creates a meta-discuss mailing list where
> governance and the evolving relationship to its rhizomatic cousins
> is "on-topic"
> Is that in line with your vision?
> -- Ernie P.
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Chris Messina
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