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Mailing Lists Proposals

There is a proposal for creating a new mailing list for discussing the research and creation of new microformats so that those discussions do not overwhelm microformats-discuss.

Some candidates for names with the thinking behind them. Feel free to add your name and opinion (+/- 1 or 0).


Focusing on discussing "new" microformats

  • +1 Tantek - this name has the advantage of attracting the newbie that wants to do a "new" microformat.
  • +1 ScottReynen
  • -1 Lachlan Hunt
  • +1 Joe Andrieu
  • -1 Andy Mabbett
  • +1 Bob Jonkman
  • +1 Ben Ward
  • +1 Ben O'Neill
  • +1 Robert Bachmann
  • +1 Colin Barrett - "new" is a shiny word, and will hopefully folks interested in shiny things off uf-discuss.
  • +1 Spike


Focusing on the essential, and often overlooked by first-time proposers "research" phase(s) in the process

  • -1 Tantek - agreed with Bob Jonkman's comment, research is only part of the process.
  • +1 ScottReynen
  • +1 cgriego
  • +1 Phae
  • +1 JustinThorp
  • -1 Andy Mabbett
  • -1 Joe Andrieu
  • -1 Bob Jonkman (research is part of process, best documented on the Wiki)
  • -1 Ben Ward (strikes me as dilution too far of µf-discuss and µf-new)
  • 0 Lachlan Hunt


That's really what we're talking about with research of new microformats, isn't it?

  • +1 ScottReynen
  • +1 Lachlan Hunt
  • +1 singpolyma
  • -1 Andy Mabbett
  • -1 Joe Andrieu
  • -1 cgriego (reminds me of parsing--processing--more so than even microformats-dev)
  • -1 Bob Jonkman (Is this the process of creating a new microformat, or the some other process? Document it on the Wiki, I say)
  • +0 Tantek - I think this is too vague and won't automatically attract the newbie that wants to propose new microformats. Still the semantic is roughly correct.
  • -1 Jon Williams 11:10, 26 Jan 2007 (PST)
  • -1 Colin Barrett - A bit ambiguous, might be mistaken for a meta discuss list.


  • -1 Tantek - It misses the point of the process, and implies that there is a desire for microformats proposals - there isn't.
  • -1 ScottReynen
  • 0 Andy Mabbett
  • -1 Bob Jonkman
  • -1 Ben Ward


Similar to propose but milder ;)

  • +1 ChrisMessina
  • -1 Tantek - same comment as on microformats-propose
  • -1 ScottReynen
  • -1 Phae (I feel this is just -propose in disguise)
  • -1 BenWest
  • -1 Andy Mabbett
  • -1 Bob Jonkman
  • -1 Ben Ward (If µf-new or similar is created for active spec'ing and format development, uf-discuss would comfortably accomodate this as part of the course of discussion)


For working on microformats, new and old.

  • +1 BenWest: I thought we are interested in a list that provides a venue for iterating through the process, and revising and refining microformats in general. discuss is for newbies, and dev is for implementing them.
  • -1 Tantek: work could mean anything though, not just work on creating new microformats.


WG is an abbreviation of Working Group

  • +1 Lachlan Hunt
  • -1 Tantek: "working group" means something quite specific in W3C terminology. Very little of that applies to the set of people that work on creating new microformats.
  • -1 BenWard: As Tantek says, ‘working group’ means something that Microformats doesn't have and doesn't want. What's more, to an observer ‘Working Group’ implies exclusivity which isn't what µf development is about.


TF is an abbreviation of Task Force

  • 0 Lachlan Hunt
  • -1 Tantek: Though less overloaded with specific meaning than "working group", "task force" still means something quite specific in W3C terminology as well as other standards organizations. Very little of that applies to the set of people that work on creating new microformats.
  • -1 BenWard


General-purpose "meta-discussion" about process and policies

  • +1 Ernest Prabhakar: captures all the things normal people don't want on uf-discuss. :-)
  • -1 Tantek - this is outside the scope of the proposal for a list for new microformats.

Change nothing

e.g fix uf-dev (we have done that), do nothing else (for now)

  • +1 RyanKing
  • +1 Tim White
  • +1 Andy Mabbett
  • 0 Bob Jonkman
  • 0 Ben Ward
  • -1 BenWest
  • -1 Tantek - we have opened uf-dev and I still strongly believe we need a new list for the discussion of new microformats, separate from microformats-discuss in order to avoid overwhelming new folks with details and minutiae of new and in development formats.
  • -1 Robert Bachmann
  • -1 Ernest Prabhakar: there's way too much "useful" noise that confuses new entrants (and me, sometimes)
  • 0 Colin Barrett - I'm not convinced that doing nothing isn't an option, but momentum seems to be in the other direction, so I've registered my vote for uf-new
  • -1 DerrickPallas It confused the heck out of me.

General Comments

Andy Mabbett

Why not create a new mailing list for each proposal, once it's reached a certain stage? Then , if the uF is created, or the proposal abandoned, the specific list would be closed, and the archive retained as a link from the "brainstorming" page, as a permanent, and discrete record of discussion on that topic.

Alternatively, the list could be retained for discussion of the implementation and development of that specific uF.

For example, several academic and professional taxonomists have told me in e-mail that they would be interested in the species proposal, (and one astronomer, likewise, for mars/ luna), but do not have the time to follow a general mailing list; indeed, a couple asked me specifically if I would set up a separate mailing list for the subject.

Andy Mabbett 04:44, 24 Oct 2006 (PDT)

  • The biggest challenge with creating new microformats (especially for new comers) is with following the process. The same discussions are often had over and over for different formats, thus it makes sense for people developing different formats to at least see the discussions around the creation of other formats and hopefully learn from them and avoid repeating the same questions or mistakes. Tantek 00:10, 25 Oct 2006 (PDT)
    • Someone new to the mailing list won't see past discussion there anyway; they need to be referred to the archive. If busy people, whose expertise we need, choose not to see discussion of other, unrelated microformats, we can't force it on them - we either provide a more specifically-focussed forum, or they don't participate at all - which is best? Andy Mabbett 03:06, 25 Oct 2006 (PDT)
      • Getting the *process/format/interop/reuse* aspects correct are more important than specific expertise in any vertical field. The point of the process is that we don't actually need the expertise of field experts - anyone can do research on the open web and find examples. In some ways, field experts may be a negative on the process in that they usually want to represent 100% of the possibilities for a format, rather than 80/20 of the *real world* use cases that are already in use on the Web. Tantek 10:53, 26 Jan 2007 (PST)
  • In addition, part of the microformats methodology/philosophy/principles is simplicity and minimalism - the fewer the better. This applies not only to microformats, microformats properties, and microformats values, but to microformats mailing lists as well. Thus since the beginning we have only created lists when absolutely necessary (i.e. when the traffic/topics crowded out one of the other lists), and then only one at a time. Tantek 00:10, 25 Oct 2006 (PDT)
    • I can see what has happened previously; I'm suggesting - with a stated justification - a variation on that. There is more than one opinion, as to what is "necessary". Andy Mabbett 03:06, 25 Oct 2006 (PDT)
      • You don't know that more than one list will be necessary until you create the first one and use it. Let's base our actions here on real world experience with the creation of *a* new list, not the theoretical expectations of needing more than one list. In addition, the previous discussion shows why it would be a *negative* to have more than one list that created microformats.Tantek 10:53, 26 Jan 2007 (PST)