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Re: A Contingency Plan for Winding Up the Working Group

From: Peter Swire <peter@peterswire.net>
Date: Fri, 14 Jun 2013 02:54:10 -0700
To: Jonathan Mayer <jmayer@stanford.edu>, David Singer <singer@apple.com>
CC: "public-tracking@w3.org Group WG" <public-tracking@w3.org>
Message-ID: <CDE0604D.8CF76%peter@peterswire.net>
I am working with W3C colleagues to have an update about our thinking about process/schedule to you today.


Prof. Peter P. Swire
C. William O'Neill Professor of Law
Ohio State University

Beginning August 2013:
Nancy J. and Lawrence P. Huang Professor
Law and Ethics Program
Scheller College of Business
Georgia Institute of Technology

From: Jonathan Mayer <jmayer@stanford.edu<mailto:jmayer@stanford.edu>>
Date: Friday, June 14, 2013 1:53 AM
To: David Singer <singer@apple.com<mailto:singer@apple.com>>
Cc: "public-tracking@w3.org<mailto:public-tracking@w3.org> Group WG" <public-tracking@w3.org<mailto:public-tracking@w3.org>>
Subject: Re: A Contingency Plan for Winding Up the Working Group
Resent-From: <public-tracking@w3.org<mailto:public-tracking@w3.org>>
Resent-Date: Friday, June 14, 2013 1:54 AM


Participants in the working group have frequently proposed agenda items and estimated consensus on issues.  I'm not sure what would be different about evaluating and adopting a contingency plan.

Moreover, there's working group precedent for contingency planning.  Some time ago members of the group proposed tabling a component of our charter, Tracking Selection Lists, for lack of consensus.  And we did.


On Thursday, June 13, 2013 at 10:26 PM, David Singer wrote:

Sent from my iPad

On Jun 13, 2013, at 9:19 PM, Jonathan Mayer <jmayer@stanford.edu<mailto:jmayer@stanford.edu>> wrote:


We first met to discuss Do Not Track over 2 years ago. We have now held 10 in-person meetings and 78 conference calls. We have exchanged 7,148 emails. And those boggling figures reflect just the official fora.

The group remains at an impasse.

No, alas, that is what you would like to believe, and what you tell others.

Determination of consensus, impasse, and alternative routes ahead are primarily the responsibility of the chairs.  It is perhaps kind of you to assume their role, but there is still work remaining for us mere delegates to do.

Thanks, nonetheless

We have sharpened issues, and we have made some progress on low-hanging fruit. But we still have not resolved our longstanding key disagreements, including: What information can websites collect, retain, and use? What sorts of user interfaces and defaults are compliant, and can websites ignore noncompliant browsers?

Our Last Call deadline is July 2013. That due date was initially January 2012. Then April 2012. Then June 2012. Then October 2012. We are 18 months behind schedule, with no end in sight.

There must come a stopping point. There must come a time when we agree to disagree. If we cannot reach consensus by next month, I believe we will have arrived at that time.

I would make two proposals for next Wednesday's call. First, that we commit to not punting our July deadline. If we have not attained agreement on Last Call documents, we should wind up the working group. Second, that we begin planning a responsible contingency process for winding up the working group if we miss our deadline.

Let me be clear: I am not proposing that we halt our work. I plan to continue collaborating in good faith right up until our deadline. I remain committed to Do Not Track as a uniform, persistent, easy-to-use, and effective control over collection of a consumer's browsing history. I believe a consensus Do Not Track standard is the best possible outcome for all stakeholders in the web ecosystem. But I also believe prudence dictates some planning for foreseeable alternative outcomes.


(Speaking only for himself, as usual.)
Received on Friday, 14 June 2013 09:54:41 UTC

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