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Re: Mailing Lists (was Re: Evolving AppCache discussions)

From: Steve Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 13 Sep 2012 10:31:22 +0100
Message-ID: <CA+ri+VncFjRxcBwq5nrHv=icCz2aYNxSU5UX+3yL74XfUV+2bA@mail.gmail.com>
To: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Cc: Adrian Bateman <adrianba@microsoft.com>, "HTML WG (public-html@w3.org)" <public-html@w3.org>, Paul Cotton <Paul.Cotton@microsoft.com>, "Sam Ruby (rubys@intertwingly.net)" <rubys@intertwingly.net>
Hi Maciej,

I like the delineation of subjects using the [] notation. I find it
difficult to (a) keep track and (b) ensure that email are directed to
the right mailing list, when there are multiple mailing lists with
often overlapping subject areas.

I also have found it diffcult when most of the dicussion occurs on a
bug rather than being on a mailing list as discussions are siloed and
easy to miss.



On 13 September 2012 03:21, Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com> wrote:
> Hi Adrian,
> I like the idea of taking up new work on AppCache. Let me comment for a moment on just the mailing list aspect of your proposal (and thus changing the subject line):
> On Sep 7, 2012, at 9:45 AM, Adrian Bateman <adrianba@microsoft.com> wrote:
>> Since there are some people who wish to participate in this work but only engage in this
>> one activity, the consensus of our small group in Mountain View was to propose a new mailing list
>> (public-html-appcache) to host the discussion (in a similar way to the public-html-media list).
> I am worried that the increasing proliferation of mailing lists is not good for the HTML WG.
> We currently have (excluding administrative and obsolete lists):
> * public-canvas-api
> * public-html
> * public-html-a11y
> * public-html-media
> * public-html-testsuite
> And I expect more proposals to keep coming.
> I understand the benefit to participants who are highly focused on one specific technology area - they can have a focused conversation and ignore everything else. However, I think there are some downsides:
> * Multiple lists tend to fragment the conversation. People may discuss the same topic in multiple places and miss each other's comments.
> * Anyone who wants to follow all of the WG's technical work has to subscribe to many lists, and must keep subscribing to more as new ones are created.
> * As meaty technical discussion spreads into the focused lists, the general list has less useful technical discussion, and becomes more a venue solely for administriva and noise.
> Other Working Groups with many deliverables have faced a similar problem. A pattern that I feel works well is using a single mailing list, and using subject line tags in brackets. For example, the CSS WG does this with their public www-style list, and the Web Apps WG does this with their public-webapps list. This way, it is easy for people interested in only one or a few subjects to filter. But it is also easy to follow everything. And we reduce the risk of fragmenting the conversation, or of the main list appearing dead.
> Therefore, I propose we move to the following approach to mailing lists:
> * public-html for discussion of the following specs, with the following subject tags:
>     HTML5: [HTML5]
>     Media Stream Extensions: [MSE]
>     Encrypted Media Extensions: [EME]
>     Canvas 2D Context: [Canvas]
>     HTML Microdata: [Microdata]
>     Discussion of the Polyglot Markup spec: [Polyglot]
>     Discussion of HTML5: techniques for providing useful text alternatives: [Alt-Techniques]
>     HTML to Platform Accessibility APIs Implementation Guide: [HTML-AAPI]
>     HTML5 Differences from HTML4: [HTML5-Diff]
>     HTML5: Edition for Web Authors: [HTML5-Author]
>     HTML: The Markup Language: [Markup]
>     AppCache extensions proposals: [AppCache]
>     HTML.Next proposals that do not yet have their own tag or spec: subject tag of [HTML.Next]
> * Discussion of the test suite: public-html with a subject tag of [Testsuite]
> * Working-group-wide announcements: [HTMLWG]
> * Discussion of Accessibility Task Force matters: public-html-a11y (since this is actually a proper joint Task Force, and for historical reason its participants wanted a safe space for discussion)
> public-canvas-api, public-html-media, and public-html
> I think this approach gets you the best of both worlds - most of the advantages of split mailing lists and of a unified mailing list at the same time.
> I'm interested in hearing what WG members think of this approach. Also I think lowercase subject tags would be fine too, if that is what WG members prefer.
> Regards,
> Maciej

with regards

Steve Faulkner
Technical Director - TPG

www.paciellogroup.com | www.HTML5accessibility.com |
HTML5: Techniques for providing useful text alternatives -
Web Accessibility Toolbar - www.paciellogroup.com/resources/wat-ie-about.html
Received on Thursday, 13 September 2012 09:32:35 UTC

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