[Fwd: consensus and ownership]

foo... wrong email address, and the bounce
notice got lost in the Sobig.F bucket.

Dan Connolly, W3C http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/

Forwarded message 1

  • From: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>
  • Date: Fri, 10 Oct 2003 12:35:23 -0500
  • Subject: consensus and ownership
  • To: sw-meaning@w3.org
  • Message-Id: <1065807322.13832.1809.camel@dirk.dm93.org>
These discussions often refer to "the owner of the URI",
which begs questions of whether all URIs have owners,
how many, and such.

I suggest that the case of http://www.ford.com/
being owned by Ford Motor company is, while very
common, not the general case. It belongs to the
pattern where the Internet Community delegates
(via the IANA URI scheme registry and the DNS),
authority over a set of URIs with a common
prefix to one particular owner.

Consider news:comp.text.xml . The Web Community
has come to agree that it refers to a "big 7" USENET
newsgroup without delegating authority to any one
party in paricular, but rather thru a time-honored
process set out in

 How to Create a New Usenet Newsgroup

(I tried to find a path from the URI scheme registry
to that how-to document; the path goes quite happily
thru RFC 1738 (December 1994)
to RFC 1036 (December 1987)
where we find "Newsgroups specified must all be the names of
existing newsgroups" but the trail goes cold there.
I think this is just failure of the RFC maintenence
system to keep up with community practice.)

Anyway... I think the general case is that a
URI has meaning to the extent that there's consensus
in the Internet Community about what it means, as expressed
in Internet protocol messages, especially messages that
express a relationship between a URI and a representation
of what it means; and that the HTTP/DNS case is, while very
common, a special case where the Web Community has delegated authority
to one party (and that delegation has limits, as we
see in the Verisign SiteFinder case).

[I think I'll send this now rather than figuring out how it
relates to the proceedings  of this forum or to www-tag or

Dan Connolly, W3C http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/

Received on Tuesday, 14 October 2003 18:11:43 UTC