Call for objections: Tri-part choice requirement for user agents

One-line summary -- deadline of 29 August for poll at

As we discussed in Seattle we have an issue that did not have consensus emerge after full discussion. On the conference call of 8 August, we discussed the two possible options and had no objections to the wording of the two options. We will hear from all of you about your substantive objections, if any, to either proposal. The proposal that draws the least strong objections in the eyes of the chairs is the consensus decision of the Working Group. We will adopt one of the two possibilities, and close this issue. This Call for Objections is a step in our "Getting to Closed" as documented here:

For those who asked for examples, has a list of similar polls from the HTML Working Group. 

The question before us is: Should we add a requirement that compliant user agents must provide functionality for sending DNT:0 as well as DNT:1 and unset, and require that all options be equally easy to exercise in the interface?

At Bellevue we narrowed down to the following two texts (or rather, one text and silence). This text would be *in addition to* the requirements on which we have already decided, namely that the DNT signal MUST reflect the user's preference (as opposed to some institution) and that general purpose user agents MUST send unset by default. Depending on the group's decision and later editorial choices, this text would appear either in Section 3 of Tracking Preference Expression ("Determining User Preference") or in a corresponding section in Tracking Compliance and Scope (like "User Agent Compliance"). If you are referring back to the minutes from the Bellevue meeting you will see these were called, respectively, "Option 0" and "Option 3" as a quirk of numbering various possible proposals; here we just use "A" and "B".

> Option A: Silence.
> (Keep just the existing text that MUST reflect the user's preference etc. User agents -- general purpose browsers or extensions -- do not have to provide a DNT:0 option that is equally easy to turn on as DNT:1. They remain free to do so if they so choose.)

> Option B: A user agent MUST require equal effort to configure their agent to each of a minimum of three choices for a Do Not Track preference: 1, 0 or unset. 
> (This would add to, not replace, existing requirements.)

This question addresses, in part, ISSUE-149.

If you have an objection to one or more of these proposed options, please express your objection via this poll with clear and specific reasoning. The purpose of the poll is not to gather a count, and "me too" additions will not carry weight. Noting which option you would prefer is also not part of this poll; we have had those discussions already. We are looking for what, if anything, you cannot live with. Most polls draw responses from only a subset of participants; please do not reply if either you could live with either option, or if someone else has already reflected your views in their response to the poll. All poll responses are public. Only reasoning that you submit as part of this call for objections will be part of the process. It is fine to point to a message on the dlist (please include the URL for the message) to avoid wasting your own time writing something twice, or just copy & paste.

This poll is open to all participants in the Working Group for two weeks until August 29, 2012 at After the poll closes, the co-chairs will respond to any objections raised as we find the option with the least strong substantive objections against it. 


Received on Wednesday, 15 August 2012 19:22:38 UTC