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Re: HTML Working Group Decision Policy - for discussion

From: Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>
Date: Fri, 9 Oct 2009 18:50:29 +0300
Cc: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Message-Id: <EC216292-F9C0-44F2-9854-70005F74657E@iki.fi>
To: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
On Oct 8, 2009, at 11:24, Maciej Stachowiak wrote:

> On Oct 8, 2009, at 12:26 AM, Henri Sivonen wrote:
>
>> On Oct 7, 2009, at 12:04, Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
>>
>>> It's very important for Working Group members to read this  
>>> document and give questions or comments. Once we settle on a  
>>> policy, we're going to follow the procedures outlined and will  
>>> expect Working Group members to be the same. So now is a great  
>>> time to ask about things that are unclear, or suggest improvements.
>>
>> It's unclear to me if issues can be revisited once an endpoint of  
>> the escalation process has been reached.
>>
>> If person A escalates and indicates that (s)he'll produce a Change  
>> Proposal but fails and the issue becomes deferred, can person B re- 
>> escalate the same issue and undefer it? Can person A re-escalate?  
>> (I'd expect it to be out of order if person A re-escalates.)
>
> I think it would be out of order for anyone to re-escalate an issue  
> that has timed out (or a nominally separate but effectively  
> identical issue).

That kind of rule would make the process vulnerable to attack, as  
dbaron already observed.

>> This policy doesn't seem to cover how the WG decides to take on new  
>> deliverables. Is that intentional?
>
> Taking on new deliverables in practice boils down to two publication  
> decisions: publishing a First Public Working Draft and going to Last  
> Call. I assume once we go to Last Call we likely intend to stick  
> with it through REC, but FPWD does not carry any implication that we  
> will proceed further on the REC track. We did not document the  
> process for these kinds of publication decisions; the policy focuses  
> on decisions about spec content. Do you think these steps need to be  
> explicitly documented somewhere? Our de facto practice seems to be  
> that a lazy consensus resolution or poll is sufficient for FPWD, but  
> there is no precedent yet for LC.

It seems odd to me to document a process even for responding to other  
WGs but not to document the process for taking on new FPWDs. After  
all, the W3C Process makes completely disposing of a document  
impossible once it has reached FPWD, so it seems like a bad idea to  
take on FPWDs too lightly.

(It seems that outside the W3C people put more weight on WG Notes than  
is appropriate considering how WG Notes are published. I noticed  
Wikipedia even referring to WG Notes as "W3C Notes". Thus, it's  
probably a good idea to avoid a situation where the WG has to  
published Notes it doesn't really endorse at all.)

Previously a policy of requiring a certain number of independent (as  
determined by the chairs) WG participants who've volunteered to work  
on a spec was put forward. Is that policy still in effect and have the  
chairs identified the required independent volunteers for the  
documents that have recently been put forward for FPWD?

-- 
Henri Sivonen
hsivonen@iki.fi
http://hsivonen.iki.fi/
Received on Friday, 9 October 2009 15:51:06 UTC

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