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Re: Change Proposals and Counter-Proposals (was Re: Issues 89 through 97)

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Mon, 18 Jan 2010 16:25:27 -0800
Cc: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>, Shelley Powers <shelley.just@gmail.com>, HTMLWG WG <public-html@w3.org>, Paul Cotton <Paul.Cotton@microsoft.com>
Message-id: <135E954B-0277-4FA1-8735-7CEC89F4D3B1@apple.com>
To: "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>

On Jan 18, 2010, at 4:15 PM, Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:

> On Mon, Jan 18, 2010 at 6:06 PM, Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com> wrote:
>> On Jan 18, 2010, at 3:42 PM, Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
>>> So then there's no reason to write a zero-edits counter proposal,
>>> since we can just object when the Call for Consensus is made?  It's
>>> been implied by Maciej that it's somehow better to write a zero-edits
>>> counter proposal.
>> You could choose to do that, but the Chairs would expect any such objection to come with full rationale. Would you rather write a rationale that's going to be judged on the one-week timeline of a Call for Consensus or the typical one-month timeline of Call for Counter-Proposals? Would you rather have your side of a dispute judged by multiple fragmented comments instead of an integrated whole, when the other side has laid out its position in a single coherent document?
> That's what I thought.  You *are*, then, saying that a change proposal
> by itself is more likely to be passed than a change proposal plus a
> zero-edits counter proposal.  Sam seems to be implying otherwise.

Really it's the quality of the rationale presented for both sides, and the reaction to Working Group members to that rationale, that is decisive. But much though we might prefer otherwise, presentation counts. Thus, writing a counter-proposal is likely to do a better job of making your case than just objecting informally. I think Sam and I have pretty similar views on this, though we may be communicating them differently. 

> Thus I am obligated to write a counter proposal to change proposals
> that I feel are really bad, but I don't know if they're bad (and thus
> worth the effort of writing a counter proposal) until they've been
> written.  Thus the current method of saying "all right, change
> proposal is in, here's the deadline for counter proposals" is a good
> idea.  ^_^

This approach is originally Sam's idea, and I am pleased with the way it's been working out. I don't think Sam is saying we're going to change things. But he *is* saying that the counter-proposal period is not guaranteed, and if a Change Proposal is either a clear winner or a clear loser just from mailing list discussion, we may not bother formally calling for alternatives.

Received on Tuesday, 19 January 2010 00:26:01 UTC

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