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DID Methods, Linked Data Key Types, and Credential Status Method Registries

From: Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
Date: Sat, 9 Dec 2017 11:32:35 -0500
To: W3C Credentials CG <public-credentials@w3.org>
Message-ID: <a9e28ad6-2d35-5805-ba0e-c1142aa74685@digitalbazaar.com>
Hi all,

I had an action from the last call to submit a registries proposal to
the group. There has been an increasing desire to externalize the DID
Methods, Linked Data Key Types, and Credential Status Methods out of the
core Verifiable Credentials and DID Method specs. It would be desirable
to make the maintenance of these registries easy to do and ensure that
they're long-lived.

Goal #1: Easy maintenance for Registries

We want minimal process around maintaining the registries. This means
that we should probably make the registries informative instead of
normative. The latter requires W3C Process and a minimum of 6-9 months
to publish any updates, or for the W3C staff (overworked) to handle
updates. Since we wouldn't use official W3C Process, it means that the
CG should adopt some low-effort process for creating and updating the
registries.

To create a registry:

1. One would create a ReSpec document, and propose it as a CG Work
   Item with the intent to make the document a CG Registry. The
   proposal would pass per the CG's documented consensus process.
2. Once the document is ready, one would request that it transition
   to a CG Registry. The proposal would pass per the CG's
   documented consensus process.

To update a registry:

1. One drafts an update to the registry and submits it as a
   Github pull request. For those that don't know how to use Github,
   a request to this mailing list that results in an editor drafting the
   pull request is also acceptable.
2. The CG would review the pull request and would make a decision to
   merge per the CG's documented consensus process.

I suggest we adopt the process above as it's fairly light weight and
mirrors our current process, which seems to be working quite well.

Goal #2: Long-lived Registries

In order for the registries to be useful, they need to be kept up to
date by an active community. We have a number of choices when it comes
to who maintains these registries.

1. W3C Staff have been known to maintain registries, but they prefer not
   to due to heavy workload.
2. W3C Working Groups are short lived by design, so they're not the best
   choice as far as long term maintenance is concerned.
3. IETF has a registry process[REG], but it's reserved for IETF specs.
4. W3C Community Groups, like this one, can be long lived and less
   process heavy.
5. Some communities, such as Microformats2, use a wiki, but that tends
   to not have any before-the-fact review process, which can lead to
   personality conflicts when the community decides to remove entries.

I suggest we go with option #4, which seems like the best option for
accomplishing our goals both in the short term and the long term.

Goal #3: Setup registries for our family of specs.

There are three registries that are under consideration (links are to
the initial proposal for the registry):

DID Method Registry
http://bit.ly/2AHJ1KG

The DID Method Registry is an informative registry for all known
Decentralized Identifier Methods and their associated specifications.

Linked Data Key Types Registry
http://bit.ly/2jfhpZs

The Linked Data Key Types Registry serves as an informative registry for
all known Linked Data Key descriptions and their associated  specifications.

Credential Status Method Registry -
https://w3c-ccg.github.io/vc-status-registry/

The Credential Status Method Registry is an informative registry for all
known Credential Status Methods and their associated specifications.

I suggest that we adopt each registry as a CCG Work Item and then
transition to a CCG Registry over the next few months.

------------------------------------------------------------------

To summarize. There are two proposals on the table:

PROPOSAL 1: Adopt the registry creation and update process for the
            Credentials Community Group as defined above in
            Goal #1 and #2.

PROPOSAL 2: Adopt the Credentials CG as the registry maintainer for
            the DID Methods, Linked Data Key Types, and Credential
            Status Method Registries defined above in Goal #3.

-- manu

[REG] https://www.ietf.org/assignments/

-- 
Manu Sporny (skype: msporny, twitter: manusporny, G+: +Manu Sporny)
Founder/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
blog: The State of W3C Web Payments in 2017
http://manu.sporny.org/2017/w3c-web-payments/
Received on Saturday, 9 December 2017 16:33:07 UTC

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