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Re: discretion in adding issues [was: respecification of document.write...]

From: Michael(tm) Smith <mike@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 4 Jun 2008 21:06:11 +0900
To: Robert J Burns <rob@robburns.com>
Cc: Shawn Medero <soypunk@gmail.com>, Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>, www-archive@w3.org
Message-ID: <20080604120608.GD5229@sideshowbarker>
Robert J Burns <rob@robburns.com>, 2008-06-04 12:38 +0200:

>  Your recent flurry of messages on the issue tracker are way out of 
>  line[1][2][3].

Be that is it may, the point I was made to you in them (that the
proposals should not have been raised as tracker issues to begin
with) is one that I mean for you to take as an authoritative
decision from me acting in my responsibility as the W3C contact
for the group -- not as my personal opinion.

>  It is inappropriate for you to address other WG members in this
>  manner

I haven't actually addressed any other WG members in the manner I
did to you in my messages. Only you. Because so far you're the
only one I've needed to have this particular discussion with.

Nobody else in the group has yet caused 9 new issues to be raised
virtually at one time -- in particular, 9 issues most or all of
which would never had been raised to begin with if there had been
previous discussion about whether or not they were appropriate
tracker issues.

>  and I don't want to see it again (to anyone).

While I appreciate your advice, I'll hope you'll let me worry
myself about how I choose to address other members of the group. I
addressed you in the way I did in order to try to make my point as
emphatically as I could. And despite that, it seems I'm still not
getting that point across to you successfully.

>  The low level of decorum that you and others on the WG feel
>  they can maintain is disgraceful.  Calling the results of my
>  time spent volunteering for this WG, researching issues,
>  discussing and understanding the views of other WG members and
>  distilling that into actionable items is definitely belittling
>  and insulting. Don't imagine for an instant that it is not.

I think the second sentence above is missing a word. "Calling the
results... <missing word>". I've never said anything negative in
this discussion about how you've invested your time. What I did
say is that issues 42-50 have created a mess for us. And the
longer this particular discussion goes on about them, the more
clear it's going to be that that was an accurate assessment.

One thing we can do together productively at this point is to talk
instead about how you can move forward appropriately with
encouraging discussion within the group of the proposals behind
those issues once they are no longer tracker issues (and doing the
same with any future proposals you want to bring to the attention
of the group).

>  Also, defending others’ comments that I created a mess is still 
>  inappropriate no matter what ways you find to justify in your mind.

Then let me be a little more clear about that: I would have called
it a mess (or worse) myself anyway -- regardless of whether
somebody else had said it before me. So I'm not defending anybody
else here (or myself).

It is absolutely a mess for me personally in that it has now
created extra, unnecessary work for me, personally, and is now
sucking up time that I could and should be spending on other
priorities (like, for example, getting the next WD for the HTML5
spec and accompanying documents ready for publication).

If you want to keep pursuing this particular discussion and you
want me to respond, then that's going to obligate me to spend more
of my time on it, and take that much time away from other work I
need to get done.

I've already said pretty much what I have to say about this as the
W3C contact for the group -- which is: I need you to understand
that issues 42-50 should not have been raised as tracker issues to
begin with, and that you are not to have any further tracker
issues raised for you without first getting an OK on the
issue-tracking list, from me personally or from the chairs.

Further discussion about this it not going to change that position.

>  These are all legitimate issues which I raised in good faith and
>  have volunteered my own time to address.

I have never questioned whether you raised them in good faith nor
questioned whether you were willing to spend time on addressing
them. But there is nothing that requires them to be tracker issues
in order for you to address them. You were addressing them long
before they were raised in the issue tracker, and you'll be able
to continue addressing them after the tracker issues associated
with them are closed.

>  Closing them prematurely would be inappropriate as well.

No, closing them at this point would not be premature nor
inappropriate. What instead is premature about most or all of them
is that they were raised as tracker issues to begin with.

>  In your defense, would you care to point to a document somewhere (including 
>  statements of the co-chairs) that clearly states a policy or policies, 
>  regarding the issue tracker, that I (or Gregory) violated? Please point to 
>  the working criteria for raising issues in the issue-tracker that these 
>  issues do not meet.

See http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html-wg-issue-tracking/2008Jun/0002.html

And don't think that I'm joking or trying to be cute.

See especially the part where I said this:

  [The issue tracker] is meant to track WG progress (often
  represented as ACTIONs) on broad concepts concerning the
  specification, [in] cases where there is a groundswell of WG
  discussion about a concept and the issue tracker will help track
  how our decision came to be.

If you want me to make that statement more official, I can further
set aside everything else I haven't gotten done today and refine
that statement a bit and put it right on the group home page.

But I'd question the value in me taking time to stop and do that
just now, since there's a very limited set of people who I can see
that would benefit right now from me doing that (that is, the set
of people who currently have access directly or indirectly to
getting tracker issues raised and who may remain unclear on what
the working criteria are for raising new issues).

>  As for my comments about Andrew, I have numerous times cordially requested 
>  Andrew clarify his remarks when they have seemed hostile. Typically Andrew 
>  simply withdraws from the conversation rather than providing elaboration on 
>  his meaning. This has been a pattern and I would not use the term 'hostile' 
>  lightly. To take the focus off of Andrew directly, there has been a pattern 
>  of knee-jerk responses where some WG members respond with a repertoire of 
>  canned answers. The recent response I cited was simply the most clear case 
>  of it having nothing to do with the conversation. I'm not calling for any 
>  action regarding such WG disruptions, but I will not hesitate to call them 
>  out when they occur (especially so blatantly as calling a zero 
>  implementation proposal too much "implementation complexity").

That's all up to you to decide. What I was attempting to do was
offer you a little only-for-what-it's-worth-to-you advice about
how to help prevent your proposals from getting further negative
reactions -- or worse yet, from just being ignored completely by
people who otherwise might be inclined to comment on them.

>  Keep in mind most of these issues were in the issue tracker in some form 
>  when we were using the wiki. They simply failed to get moved to the new 
>  issue tracker when that was setup.

No, the Wiki was not "the" issue tracker, and no, your proposals
did not simply fail to get moved to "new" issue tracker when it it
was set up. Regardless, it's moot now, because the main point that
needs to be made here remains that most or all of them do not meet
the criteria for being tracker issues for the group. Again, that's
not my opinion -- that's me speaking as the person who's now
tasked with making the final decision about which of them (if any)
should actually be moved to "open" status (and thus be officially
taken up as issues in by the group), and which should be closed.

  --Mike

-- 
Michael(tm) Smith
http://people.w3.org/mike/
http://sideshowbarker.net/

Received on Wednesday, 4 June 2008 12:06:48 GMT

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