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M| Motion to use prefix to categorize messages and threads (Robert's Rules of Order over Email)

From: Rob Burns <robburns1@mac.com>
Date: Sun, 19 Aug 2007 07:12:32 -0500
Message-Id: <E10E29D7-5749-4E21-B885-333394BC11AA@mac.com>
To: public-html WG <public-html@w3.org>

Hello All WG Members,

Motion to use prefix to categorize messages and threads

Since email is such an important part of our decision making  
according to the WG's charter[1], I'd like to propose a few  
conventions that we could follow in order to make handling the volume  
of email easier. This may also help keep members aware of the purpose  
for an email posting; keep members aware of maintaining proper  
subject headings and threading; and make it easier to find relevant  
email messages and navigate the archives.

What I'd like to suggest is that we create a taxonomy of email  
messages using the following notation to begin a subject heading:

   "M|": Motion (an actionable motion requiring a seconding email  
and then subsequent discussion; within the same thread and using the  
same subject)
   "R|": Review (a detailed review of the draft or portion of the  
   "P|": Proposal (a proposed enhancement to the specification)
   "A|": Announcement (announcement of general importance to work  
group members; this might also be posted to the separate announcement  
   "Q|" For posting questionnaire responses to the list
   "D|": General informal discussion (default for unspecified)

Like the example set by this email, each subject heading would begin  
an M, R, A, P, or D followed by the vertical-line character (U+007C)  
found on most keyboards. This allows an easy categorization and  
sorting of emails by these broad types while still being able to view  
the most significant parts of the subject heading.

In keeping with this proposal, the only initial response to a message  
beginning with "M|" should begin with "seconded" before any  
discussion on a motion continues.

Announcements, should not generally see additional discussion.  
Proposals and reviews might see significant discussion. The category"  
D|" for informal discussion should generally be avoided since they do  
not focus on the tasks of the WG or may tend to be tangentially  
related  discussions better conducted elsewhere.

Though much or our deliberations need not involve formal votes, it is  
still helpful to clearly delineate motions by members that are then  
seconded. As in face-to-face meetings, the chair is still free to  
gauge the tenor of the WG without a formal decision. Promoting  
opening statements in the form of motions (with seconding) helps  
focus discussions and accomplish ends productively.

If this motion is adopted, by the WG, I recommend we include the  
description of the procedure  on our main web page and perhaps the  
HTML Wiki page as well.

Can I get a seconding?

[1]: <http://www.w3.org/2005/10/Process-20051014/policies#Votes>
Received on Sunday, 19 August 2007 12:12:43 UTC

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