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[Bug 12776] Define process for deciding whether a draft is REC-track or Note-track

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Mon, 20 Jun 2011 08:00:58 +0000
To: public-html-a11y@w3.org
Message-Id: <E1QYZPm-0001b6-3e@jessica.w3.org>

--- Comment #15 from Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com> 2011-06-20 08:00:57 UTC ---
(In reply to comment #14)
> (In reply to comment #13)
> > Informative vs normative and REC vs Note are orthogonal dimensions.
> Agreed. To be even more specific: A Note can contain statements that are
> intended as normative requirements, and it's possible for a Rec to contain no
> normative requirements at all, and to just be purely informative.
> [...]
> > It is certainly up to Editors (initially) and the Working Group (ultimately)
> > whether a draft will include normative requirements. But it is also up to the
> > Working Group whether a draft will proceed to Candidate Rec and beyond. It
> > seems much better to decide this up front, in an orderly manner, than to go all
> > the way to the point of being ready to go to CR and then having the CR
> > resolution fail.
> > 
> > That is what this bug is about.
> As I understand it, the background on this bug was that during the LC survey,
> Lachlan stated that he believed a couple of drafts which are currently Working
> Drafts should be made into Notes instead. And we have two other bugs open now
> for those.

Yes, the comments from Lachlan and others asking for certain drafts to be
targeted to become WG Notes led indirectly to this process bug. However, the
process issue is not about making Lachlan happy. It's about making a clear way
for the WG to decide a matter that should be a WG Decision.

> The reason Lachlan gave what that he does not want those documents to contain
> any statements of normative requirements, and he mistakenly believes that the
> way to ensure they don't have any normative requirements is to put them on the
> "Note track".

There does seem to be some confusion between normative vs non-normative on the
one hand, and REC vs WG Note on the other. There is some tangential
relationship, because Notes are often not seen as authoritative, whether or not
they contain normative requirements. It's definitely great to explain this to

> But that's not going to achieve what Lachlan thinks its going to achieve; if
> the documents are turned into Notes -- or if the group decides they are
> destined to eventually become Notes -- that is not going to prevent the editors
> of those documents from including statements of normative requirements in them.
> So establishing a process in the decision policy for turning documents into
> Notes is not going to solve the problem Lachlan wants fixed.

That may be so, but Lachlan was not the only WG member to suggest converting
some or all of our deliverables to Notes and likely will not be the last. We
need a way of fielding such requests. Anyone is welcome to get Lachlan to
withdraw his request, as well.

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