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Re: Another Draft of TAG position on use of unregistered media types in W3C Recommendations

From: T.V Raman <raman@google.com>
Date: Thu, 3 Aug 2006 10:24:25 -0700
Message-ID: <17618.12617.267603.846438@retriever.corp.google.com>
To: noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com
Cc: connolly@w3.org, www-tag@w3.org


I find it somewhat disturbing that we appear to  be taking a
position with respect to telling groups what to do namely,
"Attempt to get all types you used registered with IANA"
-- but then step back  when it comes to saying what a group
should do if the above fails. I believe it is fair for us to say
"You cannot create new types unless you register them
appropriately" --- 
but I'm not comfortable with our   guidance to WGs on
pre-existing unregistered types.

noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com writes:
 > 
 > Dan Conolly wrote:
 > 
 > > That much is fine. I don't like the last bit, but I wasn't 
 > > going to object until you prompted me again ;-)
 > 
 > Oh, I wouldn't have wanted to miss a chance to go another round.  Lucky 
 > thing I checked :-).  Let's see if we can wrap this up.  First, let me 
 > just merge the changes I think you've asked for, so you can at least 
 > verify that I understood your proposal.  Is this what you intended?
 > 
 > ==================YET ANOTHER DRAFT =================================
 > Members of the W3C Advisory Board have recently approached the Technical 
 > Architecture Group (TAG) to ask for clarification of the guidelines 
 > regarding references to unregistered media types from W3C Recommendations. 
 >   The TAG briefly considered this question during their teleconference of 
 > 18 July 2006 [1,2], and again on 25 July [minutes not yet available]. This 
 > note is being circulated to publicize our conclusions. 
 > 
 > Media types and other formats referenced from W3C Recommendations should 
 > be properly registered with the appropriate authority.  Nonetheless, the 
 > TAG recognizes that certain such formats come into widespread use without 
 > registration, and that there may thus in exceptional circumstances be 
 > reasons for considering reference to unregistered types in W3C 
 > Recommendations.  To emphasize that the importance attached to 
 > registration, the TAG suggests the following guidelines for W3C 
 > Recommendations:
 > 
 > * Workgroups preparing Recommendations should avoid dependencies on media 
 > types or other data formats that are not properly registered with the 
 > appropriate registration authority.  In the case of MIME media types, that 
 > authority is IANA.
 > 
 > * Accordingly, workgroups should arrange for registration of new media 
 > types that they may create, and should make reasonable efforts to promote 
 > the proper registration of other formats on which their Recommendations 
 > depend.
 > 
 > W3C process is a balance of consensus, architecture, and timeliness; if a 
 > working group requests to proceed with references to unregistered media 
 > types, it's a process question to say whether the extenuating 
 > circumstances are sufficient.   As the TAG is not chartered to address 
 > process questions, we leave it to the Advisory Board to establish any 
 > policies or just leave it to the discretion of The Director.
 > 
 > Noah Mendelsohn
 > For the W3C Technical Architecture Group
 > 
 > [1] http://www.w3.org/2001/tag/2006/07/18-agenda.html
 > [2] http://www.w3.org/2001/tag/2006/07/18-tagmem-minutes.html#item05
 > 
 > ===================================================
 > 
 > For the record, I can easily live with that.  Just to follow up a bit, you 
 > wrote:
 > 
 > > On Tue, 2006-07-25 at 18:06 -0400, noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com wrote:
 > > [...]
 > > > The TAG does recognize that there are a few unregistered media types 
 > > > already in widespread use, and we agree that there may be exceptional 
 > > > cases when Recommendations would benefit from reference to such types.
 > > 
 > > Well, that suggests that we think there are, currently, cases
 > > when Recommendations would benefit from reference
 > > to unregistered media types. I don't think there are.
 > 
 > > >   We 
 > > > believe that the W3C process should recognize that there is 
 > > great value to 
 > > > encouraging W3C groups to promote the registration of such types, but 
 > > > should also recognize that asking a workgroup to do this as a
 > > precondition 
 > > > for referencing a type could in some cases be burdensome.
 > > 
 > > That suggests that in this burden is undue. I haven't seen a case where
 > > it is.
 > 
 > Well, actually, I think some TAG members such as Raman strongly indicated 
 > that they felt the burden could be significant, and wanted that point of 
 > view represented a bit.  That's why I wrote the draft as I did.  My own 
 > position happens to be about half way between (enough burden to matter, 
 > though rarely), but more to the point, if Raman and other TAG members can 
 > live with your proposed text (which is sort of neutral on the burden), 
 > that seems like a good compromise to me.
 > 
 > So, at the risk of the AB being weeks past needing an answer by the time 
 > we get this done, I'm going to restart the clock on having a draft out for 
 > a couple of days, using the text above as the point of review.  If we get 
 > either silence or explicit assent from other TAG members by, say, Thurs. 
 > noon East Coast time, I'll send it out.  I really think it's time to wrap 
 > this up.
 > 
 > Dan, thanks for your help with this.
 > 
 > Noah
 > 
 > 
 > --------------------------------------
 > Noah Mendelsohn 
 > IBM Corporation
 > One Rogers Street
 > Cambridge, MA 02142
 > 1-617-693-4036
 > --------------------------------------
 > 
 > 
 > 
 > 

-- 
Best Regards,
--raman

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Received on Thursday, 3 August 2006 17:24:57 GMT

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