RE: Unverifiable Transactions / Cookie draft

On Tue, 18 Mar 1997, Yaron Goland wrote:
> The IETF is not a social engineering organization ...

I went to the W3 home page <> for other reasons today and
found three major areas of research listed there: 'User Interface',
'Technology and Society', and 'Architecture'.  Under 'Technology and
Society' was a subheading for 'Privacy and Demographics' (the topic we have
been primarily arguing).  Does that make the W3C a "social engineering
organization"?  Isn't Microsoft a W3C member?  If those topics -- privacy,
demographics, and society, not to mention user interface -- are germane to
the W3C's work, why are they suddenly irrelevant and out of scope for the
HTTP-wg?  Are you saying we can't discuss them simply because we haven't
paid the W3C's membership fee?

> ... and its purpose is not for users to "forcefully indicate their
> preferences to UA vendors."

The IETF has, through its open admission policies, made itself a forum for
any interested party to express an opinion and argue a position.  This is
true for the representative from DoubleClick just as much as it is true for
me or any other user or implementor out there.  If the position is
persuasive and the group is persuaded (and working implementations can be
produced), then the standard can be modified to the group's wishes.  This
is not a matter of forcing any vendor to do anything.  Instead, it is an
opportunity for a a standards document to benefit from public review and
comment.  If you or your company don't like the product of that review, the
worst we can do to you is call you "non-compliant."  No other force is
available for exercise.

> I figure I should just relax and let it ride. After all, the reality of
> the spec was decided before the last call was ever taken.

Oh, PLEASE.  I personally made several invitations to Microsoft for
representatives to attend the state-management subgroup, and the topic was
a matter of open debate on www-talk and http-wg for literally _YEARS_
before the last call without the slightest comment from Microsoft.  The
subgroup was announced on the http-wg list and all interested parties were
invited.  Netscape managed to send not one but _two_ representatives to the
group (Lou Montulli and Ari Luotonen).  If you or anyone else at your
company feels that all decisions were made before last call, you could have
SHOWN UP for the discussion and participated, which is _how the decisions
get made_.  Don't whine about abrogation of process unless you are ready to
produce an alternative document and defend it under the same public review
the current draft is receiving. 

M. Hedlund <>

Received on Wednesday, 19 March 1997 02:18:10 UTC